Friday, September 4, 2009

Dead By Sunset By Ann Rule

This is the horrific account of a charismatic man adored by beautiful and brilliant women who always gave him what he, money, their very lives.... When attorney Cheryl Keeton's brutally bludgeoned body was found in her van in the fast lane of an Oregon freeway, her husband, Brad Cunningham, was the likely suspect. But there was no solid evidence linking him to the crime. He married again, for the fifth time, and his stunning new wife, a physician named Sara, adopted his three sons. They all settled down to family life on a luxurious estate. But gradually, their marriage became a nightmare.... In this gripping account of Cheryl's murder, Ann Rule takes us from Brad's troubled boyhood to one of the most bizarre trials in legal history, uncovering multiple marriages, financial manipulations, infidelities, and monstrous acts of harassment and revenge along the way.

The next time you hear someone described as charismatic,I suggest you run a mile,away from the charismatic man.These are just a few of the actions of THIS charismatic man:
-Served divorce papers on 7 month pregnant wife
-New lawyer girlfriend serves the papers
-Disconnected phone at pregnant estranged wife’s apartment,she really needed the phone in case she had to phone emergency if she went into labor,being all alone.
-Had the car repossessed while estranged wife was in hospital giving birth
-Paid child support by cheque religiously every month so that ex could not claim from welfare then would have the cheques cancelled.
-Convinces his daughter to come live with him,tormented her,then when she asked to go back to her mother he took all her clothes away because he bought it.She then caught the bus wearing tattered clothes
-Picked up kids for weekend visit,then destroyed the new clothes the mother bought and sent them back with old clothes
-Beat up wives and convinced them they were stupid
-Sent faxes to estranged wife’s work with naked photos taken while they were married
-tried to convince estranged wife’s co workers that she was loose and wild
-when all else failed,killed wife and made sure one of their kids was there to see that happen
-Then he got involved with a new woman,convinced her to adopt the kids,then left this woman and sued her for child support (while she was still paying off the USD1 million debt he incurred and left her with)

And the list goes on...
This man was cunning hence I introduce you to Brad Cunningham!

This book centres around the murder of Brad Cunningham's fourth wife,Cheryl.Ann Rule takes us back into the past of Brad Cunningham,and from witness accounts,the details of his life lived and the cruelties he imposed on the people in his life,including his own children.This man is a piece of work!You know how we all moan about the man in our lives from time to time.This man,Brad, made me realise that most of us are actually with brilliant,wonderful,loving,amazing men if we use Brad Cunningham as the yardstick with which to measure how great our partners truly are.

It took me a while to get close to Cheryl(the murdered wife) specifically because she was the attorney girlfriend who had served divorce papers on the pregnant wife.I just could not get past the fact that in my opinion any man who would do that to the mother of his child,would obviously not be prime husband or boyfriend material.PLUS I have my own views on the "sisterhood" and one of the basic rules is "Do not go anywhere near a married or committed man".But as time went on and I saw what Cheryl went through I began to empathize and the eventual feeling was "No one deserves this,not even if they looked for this trouble"

And to meet a truly amazing woman,read about Sara Gordon,his fifth wife, a doctor who despite all the trauma she suffered at the hands of Brad Cunningham,did the ultimate selfless act.But I won't tell you what she did.You will have to read the book!Hint: it has to do with the three sons that Cheryl has with Brad.

This book was brilliant and I have yet to meet a man like Brad Cunningham,even in my true crime books.He had such an massive sense of entitlement that I am now convinced that there should be a study into what kind of childhood creates this "abnormal" feeling and what kind of crimes it can lead to,and possibly the different ways to avoid and treat this problem.

If you would like to read this book,here are some links:
Dead by Sunset
or Kalahari Books-South Africa

And for those who would like to find this book elsewhere here are some more book details:
Country: United Kingdom
Format: Mass market paperback
Publisher: Pocket Books
ISBN: 9780671001131
Pages: 544
Illustrations: Illustrated

To see what Cheryl looked like go hereand a photograph of the amazing Brad Cunningham is here


  1. Hmm isn't it just mindboggling what some people are capable of? I think I might give this one a try, as hideous as Brad Cunningham sounds. Great review!

  2. Well, after picking my jaw up off of the floor reading about this horrible man, I am adding this book to my list. Great review, Yvette!

  3. This book sounds really good. Thanks for the review.


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