There’s a therapy clinic called Serenity, yet it’s anything but serene. Serenity is the creation and obsession of Dr. Martin Braddock, a scientist who enlists unorthodox methods for treating phobias. He claims to be the “Guardian of Hope” and the “Messenger of Enlightenment,” but in reality, Dr. Braddock has succeeded only in twisting the simple truths of innocent victims and enforcing emotional terrorism. Bittersweet Serenity, an eighty-thousand-word mystery, commences with Krystyna Kramer-Braddock, desperate to erase her connection with the maverick scientist she once married. Nevertheless, Krystyna’s demands for a divorce have resulted only in a volatile series of denials from her estranged husband. Then, quite unexpectedly, Dr. Martin Braddock is agreeable to the divorce and suspiciously eager to declare a truce. The ill-fated truce sends Krystyna traveling to a remote mountainside, where she discovers sadistic experiments choreographed by the scientist, and aided by an evil cohort decidedly cut from the same ebony cloth. It comes as no surprise that what Dr. Braddock cannot lure, finesse, or manipulate, he’ll seize outright using the abundant resources available to him; family money that sometimes also serves as a backbone, and much worse, a soul. The bottom line, Krystyna has good reason to be afraid. Regardless, Krystyna Kramer-Braddock is forced to confront the scientist as well as the shadowed side of SERENITY. * * * * * Bittersweet Serenity was a winner in the North American Fiction Writers Awards of 1999.