Book Reviews: Mary Higgins Clark

I only read my first Mary Higgins Clark book last year and she has fast become one of my favourite authors. Her books are my comfort reads in the same way that Agatha Christie’s are – great old-fashioned whodunnits. And there is always a great epilogue that leaves you feeling satisfied at the end.

I have just finhished The Cradle Will Fall which is now one of my favourites. In The Cradle Will Fall, County prosecutor Katie DeMaio lands in hospital after a minor car accident. During the night, she sleepily watches through the window as a man loads a woman’s body into the boot of a car. Is it just a medicated nightmare, or is the scene horrifyingly real? On the same night, a 7 month pregnant woman, who had waited 10 years for a baby, drinks cyonide and kills herself. When police start looking into the suicide and become suspicious and potential witnesses start turning up dead, it’s a race against time to find the culprit.

From the first few pages I knew that this was going to be another page-turner. This book is different to some of the others that I have read in that you know from the start who the killer is so it’s not so much of a whodunnit but a will-they-catch-him-in-time. Massive thumbs up!

In Where are you Now? , a university student vanishes without a trace for no apparant reason and calls home every mothers day for the next 10 years. His messages are brief and always end up with him telling her not to look for him. After his latest call home, his sister vowes to find him and opens a can of worms that someone wants to stay buried when long buried secrets are unearthed.  Another massive thumbs up for this one!

Just Take My Heart is perhaps my least favourite of MHC’s books, but that said I still thoroughly enjoyed it. Emily Wallace is an Assistant Prosecuting attorney. She has just been handed the high profile case of the murder of movie-star, Natalie Raines. Natalie was killed in her own kitchen and her ex-husband, Greg, is on trial for the killing. The only problem is that Natalie’s mother, doesn’t believe Greg could have killed her. Emilyworries that she is not up to handling the case as she has had a heart transplant recently and has also lost her husband. The trial finally goes ahead and Greg is convicted. But Emily is now having second thoughts about his guilt. She begins her own investigation…….

In Two Little Girls in Blue, twins, Kelly and Kathy, are kidnapped for ransom while their parents are out and a babysitter is looking after them. The money is paid, but the handover goes wrong and only Kelly is returned. Initially, it seems that Kathy has died, but twin Kathy still talks to her and convinces her parents that she is still alive. Evidence mounts, but the police are frustrated at every turn. The tension mounts as the race to find the little girl alive builds and the kidnappers become desperate….

I heard That Song Before: Twenty-two years ago, 6 year old Kay heard a man who is hidden from view, whistle a familiar song. She also over heard a conversation between a man and a women and that same night 18 year old Susan Altrop disappeared . Years later she is now married to Peter Carrington who is still suspected of murdering Susan and he is arrested. Peter is tried for the crime but his wife is sure that he is innocent and finds new evidence….

In No Place Like Home Celia Nolan is given a very expensive gift for her birthday by her new husband who wanted to surprise her – a house! The house is beautiful and set in lovely countryside, but what Alex Nolan doesn’t know is that his wife has already been there. In fact she lived there as a child under a different name – Liza Barton. The same Liza Barton (now dubbed Little Lizzie Borden by the townsfolk) who shot and killed her Mother and wounded her stepfather in that very house aged 10.

Twenty-four years later, all Celia’s old memories are awakened by the house as it appears that someone is trying to scare her by painting messages on the lawn and leaving old newspaper clippings around of the Liza Barton case. Does somebody remember her and know who she is? Just when she thinks things can’t get any worse, people start turning up dead and all the evidence seems to be pointing at Celia.

On the Street Where You Live was the perfect good ole-fashioned whodunnit to read while being wrapped up in the front of the fire, poorly.
Emily Graham moves in to her ansestoral home in Spring Lake, NJ knowing that over 100 years ago a family member was murdered in that very town. In the following years, two more of her ancestors friends were also murdered and the town now appears to have a copycat murdered over a century later with young girls disappearing on the same dates. The last date that fits with the older crimes is less than a week ago so there is a race against time to find the perpertrator before he strikes again.

As with all MHG’s books, there are suspects aplently and you soon learn that, true to form, it could be anyone of them. I love the fact that her books have no gratuitous gore in them, just an old- fashioned whodunnit.

And finally here is her new book that is due out in May (CANNOT WAIT!). Here is the synopsys for The Shadow of Your Smile from Goodreads:

“When at twenty-six Olivia Morrow married Jonathan Williams, she joked that it was a good thing she was a psychologist. Thirty-four year old Jonathan and his identical twin brother, Charles, were brilliant obstetricians, renowned for their research, and sharing a thriving practice in Manhattan. Olivia, like most people, had difficultly telling them apart. Five years later, Charles is found murdered in his midtown apartment, apparently the victim of a robbery. Olivia understands the terrible grief her husband is enduring at the loss of his twin until, as the months pass, she begins to suspect that it is not Charles who was killed but her husband Jonathan. Her search for the truth plunges her into life-threatening danger which is only increased when she crosses the path of Henry Patton, a criminologist, who is on a search of his own, the truth behind a long-ago scandal involving his grandmother that must now be solved at all costs.”

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10 thoughts on “Book Reviews: Mary Higgins Clark

  1. I’ve never read any Mary Higgins Clark before…but I’ve seen a few reviews of her books on other book blogs lately. I love Agatha Christie, so it sounds like I’d really enjoy them.

    BTW, great blog 🙂

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  2. I just picked up a copy of M.H.Clark’s latest book at the library on audio. It is a completely different story and a completely different jacket. Mine is about an dying old lady and a nun. The only similarity is that the main character is named Olivia….I can understand authors changing some details of a book before it hits the market, but changing the entire story line? Does anyone have any answers for this? I wanted to read the book described here. The one that I have is not interesting to me.

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    • This is SO weird! When I first saw your post I wasn’t really sure what you meant about it being a different book. I had my copy at home (which I have just read and reviewed) and it was about a nun.

      However, when I was about to post my review on the Simon and Schuster website (the UK publishers) it was a synopsys for a totally different book. It was something about a 26 yr old Olivia Morrow who’s husband dies and he has a twin. I am SURE that this is the plot for one of her other books – does anyone know?

      This is so bizzarre! Is the book you have, Mari, actually called The Shadow of Your Smile?

      I will get on to S&S about this, I think.

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  3. Yes, it definitely is The Shadow of Your Smile. I have recently had an email from the audiobook publishers and they said that between the time they printed the jacket and the actually sale of the book, the whole story changed. I had looked for the synopsis in all of her other books, but could not find any book like it.

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  4. Glad I found this site and your comments. I’ve been driving myself crazy trying to figure out why the book I downloaded (based on the overview) was not the book I was reading. I was so eager to read about the twin brothers, but book was about pediatrician and a nun! I would never expect this sort of mix-up from Simon & Schuster and MHC! BIG DISAPPOINTMENT!

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  5. That is just crazy….would’ve really liked to have read the book with the twins. Not to say that the nun story like was a bad read but the other book sounded interesting.

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