THE MELODY LINGERS ON by Mary Higgins Clark
(from Simon & Schuster.)
Mary Higgins Clark has always been a favorite of mine. I haven’t read all of her books, but many of them. Though she’s now called a thriller writer, I’ve often thought of her books as in a genre of its own—women in jeopardy.
I was pleased to read Ms. Clark’s latest and enjoyed it thoroughly.
As usual, she’s plucked a nugget from the news to center the story around. In this case it’s a man who has fleeced many out of their lifesavings through his investment company, Parker Bennett. Wanted by the FBI, he’s been missing since his empty sailboat was found in the Caribbean.
The main female character is Lane Harmon, a young widow with a five-year-old daughter, who is the primary assistant to a famous interior designer. When Lane is called onto help with the redecorating the home of Parker Bennett’s wife, Lane finds herself in a complicated web of intrigue which includes being wooed by Parker Bennett’s son, Eric, who is suspected of being a part of his father’s scheme.
Complicated by her growing feelings for Eric and wanting to believe his innocence, Lane begins to realize a lot is not as it seems.
In her usual manner, Ms. Clark has woven a complicated tale with intriguing characters and a surprising ending.
Mary Higgins Clark has written thirty-four suspense novels, three collections of short stories, an historical novel, two children’s books, and coauthored five more suspense novels with her daughter, Carol Higgins Clark, and another with author Alafair Burke.
On the personal side, years ago I went to a small mystery writing conference that was held in a rather primitive camp, and no one had bothered to inform Ms. Clark that low-heeled shoes and informal wear would be more suitable for the setting. Without complaint, Ms. Clark, who was impeccably attired including high heels, shared her wisdom with the small group of aspiring writers.
Years later, I attended the cocktail party held before the Edgars and had the opportunity and privilege to speak with Ms. Clark. Though I certainly didn’t expect her to remember me, I reminded her of that mystery writing conference, and she graciously acted as though she was delighted to see me again. She is definitely one of the nicest and most approachable of all the authors in the mystery/thriller field.
Review by Marilyn Meredith