Anderson, Catherine 1948-
ANDERSON, Catherine 1948-
Born December 22, 1948, in Grants Pass, OR; daughter of Benjamin Early La May (a chef) and a writer; married Sidney D. Anderson (an electrical engineer); children: Sidney D., Jr., and John G. Education: Attended Oregon Institute of Technology. Religion: Roman Catholic.
Agent—Steven Axelrod, The Axelrod Agency, 49 Main St., Chatham, NY 12037. E-mail—[email protected].
Romance Writers of America, Novelists, Inc.
Janet Dailey Award.
Reasonable Doubt, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1988.
Without a Trace, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1989.
Switchback, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1990.
Comanche Moon, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 1991.
Comanche Heart, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 1991.
Indigo Blue, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 1992.
Cry of the Wild, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1992.
Coming up Roses, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 1993.
Cheyenne Amber, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 1994.
Comanche Magic, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 1994.
Annie's Song, Avon Books (New York, NY), 1996.
Keegan's Lady, Avon Books (New York, NY), 1997.
Simply Love, Avon Books (New York, NY), 1997.
Forever After, Avon Books (New York, NY), 1998.
Cherish, Avon Books (New York, NY), 1998.
Baby Love, Avon Books (New York, NY), 1999.
Seventh Heaven, Avon Books (New York, NY), 2000.
Phantom Waltz, Penguin Putnam (New York, NY), 2001.
Sweet Nothings, Penguin Putnam (New York, NY), 2002.
Always in My Heart, Penguin Putnam (New York, NY), 2002.
Only by Your Touch, Penguin Putnam (New York, NY), 2003.
Blue Skies, Penguin Putnam (New York, NY), 2003.
Bright Eyes, Penguin Putnam (New York, NY), 2004.
Works included in anthologies, including "Fancy Free" in Three Weddings and a Kiss, Avon Books, and "Shotgun Bride" in Tall, Dark, and Dangerous, HarperCollins.
WORK IN PROGRESS:
A contemporary romance to be published by Penguin Putnam in December, 2004.
A prolific writer of romance novels, Catherine Anderson draws on both historical and contemporary themes. Several of her popular works are set in the American West and explore such subjects as frontier settlement and relationships between settlers and Indians. As Romance Reader contributor Jean Mason observed in a review of the novel Cherish, Anderson writes "some of the best, grittiest, and most intense" western romances that fans of the genre could want.
Anderson's West, Mason noted, "is not a pretty place. Rather … it is violent and dangerous." It is filled with bandits, lynch gangs, and unscrupulous mining and ranching entrepreneurs only too eager to prey upon Anderson's innocent but strong heroines. At the same time, however, the West is also populated by more noble characters, like Cherish's Race Spenser, a part-Indian gunfighter-turned-rancher who cares for the vulnerable heroine, Rebecca, after Rebecca's community of religious pioneers is massacred. According to Mason, Race "possesses an inherent nobility of character" and refuses to push Rebecca into a romantic relationship until she herself desires it.
The "Comanche" series includes four novels that focus on the complex relationships between white settlers and Indians. Several characters in the series have some Comanche ancestry or were raised by Comanches; romance and friendship, as well as rivalry and violence, develop among the principal characters. In Cheyenne Amber, a tracker, raised by the Cheyenne, finds a white infant stolen by Comancheros. An unlikely romance between the rough tracker and the baby's mother eventually develops.
Simply Love, in which a wealthy Colorado gold-miner tricks innocent Cassandra Zerek into becoming his mistress, presents a story that a writer for Publishers Weekly described as a "delightful comedy of errors." In a starred review, the critic hailed the novel for establishing Anderson as a "major voice" in romance writing.
Contemporary subjects, too, have attracted Anderson's interest. Forever After tells the story of an abused widow of a Mafia-connected man; she is embroiled in an ugly battle for custody of her young daughter and finds safety with a county sheriff. Though a contributor to Publishers Weekly found the novel unconvincing and contrived, Library Journal reviewer Kristin Ramsdell hailed the book for its compassion, sensitivity, and "emotionally involving brand of literary magic."
Sweet Nothings is set in the contemporary West, where Molly Wells rescues an abused race horse and brings him to Jake Coulter, a horse whisperer who soon falls in love with her. A Publishers Weekly writer considered the novel clichéd and "formulaic." John Charles in Booklist, however, described it as "pure reading magic." Similarly, Always in My Heart, the story of a couple's grief after the accidental death of their teenage son, was described in Publishers Weekly as "maudlin" and "predictable," but elicited strong praise from Library Journal critic Kristin Ramsdell, who called the novel "emotionally involving" and "rewarding."
In Only by Your Touch, a newly-single mother and her young son move to rural Oregon where they encounter Ben Longtree, a part-Indian veterinarian with a shady past. At first wary of Ben, Chloe finds herself deeply attracted to him. A Publishers Weekly contributor found this novel predictable, but noted that the book "still possesses poignancy and charm." John Charles in Booklist commended it as "beautifully written" and "emotionally satisfying."
Phantom Waltz, which focuses on the love story between a rancher and a paraplegic woman, attracted favorable attention for its treatment of this subject. A writer for Publishers Weekly found it a "poignant" and believable love story, and noted that its descriptions of the characters' lovemaking are sensitive and empathetic. John Charles in Booklist also admired the novel, describing it as an "emotionally charged" tale of contemporary romance.
Anderson told CA: "Many of my books deal with a social issue. It is my hope to touch people's hearts and leave them feeling just a bit more hopeful than they were before they began reading."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, June 1, 2001, John Charles, review of Phantom Waltz, p. 1853; December 15, 2001, John Charles, review of Sweet Nothings, p. 708; June 1, 2002, Nancy Spillman, "New Beginnings," p. 1752; March 15, 2003, John Charles, review of Only by Your Touch, p. 1281.
Library Journal, May 15, 1997, review of Simply Love, p. 64; February 15, 1998, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Forever After, p. 130; November 15, 1998, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Cherish, p. 58; August, 2002, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Always in My Heart, p. 72.
Publishers Weekly, July 12, 1993, review of Coming up Roses, p. 74; June 3, 1996, review of Keegan's Lady, p. 81; February 24, 1997, review of Simply Love, p. 87; February 23, 1998, review of Forever After, p. 74; September 7, 1998, review of Cherish, p. 92; August 30, 1999, review of Baby Love, p. 81; June 11, 2001, review of Phantom Waltz, p. 68; December 24, 2001, review of Sweet Nothings, p. 49; July 8, 2002, review of Always in My Heart, pp. 36-37; March 31, 2003, review of Only by Your Touch, p. 48.
Catherine Anderson Web site,http://www.catherineanderson.com/ (June 2, 2003).
Romance Reader,http://www.theromancereader.com/ (November 23, 1998), Jean Mason, review of Cherish.