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The Shadow of Your Smile [Hardcover]

Mary Higgins Clark
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)

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Book Description

29 April 2010
At age eighty-three and in failing health, Olivia Morrow knows she has little time left. The last of her line, she faces a momentous choice: expose a long-held family secret, or take it with her to her grave. Olivia has in her possession letters from her deceased cousin Catherine, a nun, now being considered for beatification by the Catholic Church. These letters reveal that, at the age of seventeen, Catherine gave birth to a son and gave him up for adoption and they identify the father as Alex Gannon, a world-famous doctor, scientist and inventor of medical patents. Now, two generations later, thirty-one year old paediatrician, Dr. Monica Farrell, Catherine's granddaughter, stands as the rightful heir to what remains of the Gannon family fortune. But in telling Monica who she really is and getting what is lawfully hers, Olivia would have to betray Catherine's wishes and reveal the story behind Monica's ancestry. But as the pressure of Olivia's impending choice weighs down on her, little does she realize that Alex Gannon's grand-nephews - who are currently exploiting the Gannon inheritance to fund their profligate lifestyles - will stop at nothing to silence Olivia and prevent Monica from learning the secret, even murder.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Ltd (29 April 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847377866
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847377869
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 596,656 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Mary Higgins Clark is the author of twenty-two worldwide bestselling works of fiction and a memoir. She lives in Saddle River, New Jersey, with her husband.

Product Description

Amazon Review

To build up a reputation as one of the most solid and reliable of storytellers, it is not necessary to reinvent the wheel with each new book -- and Mary Higgins Clark knows perfectly well that her legion of admirers expect a certain standard narrative from her without any striking innovations or flourishes. And that dependability is fully on display in The Shadow of the Smile, which delivers precisely the kind of reader-pleasing plotting that the author has virtually taken out a patent on -- no more, no less.

Olivia Morrow is well aware that her life is drawing to a close. At 83, she is the last of her clan, and as death approaches, Olivia is faced with a daunting decision: should she reveal a closely-guarded family secret or allow it to die with her? She possesses letters from a dead cousin, Catherine, who was a nun -- and who is now being considered as a candidate for sainthood by the Catholic Church. But the clandestine letters contain a startling fact: in her teenage years, Catherine became a mother, although she subsequently gave up her son for adoption. This is, of course, is incendiary information about someone who is scheduled for beatification. The letters also name the father, now a celebrated doctor of science. In the present, Catherine's granddaughter, Dr Monica Farrell, is the heir to the family fortune, but should the dying Olivia reveal these facts to her? Soon, the act of murder is weaved into this dangerous scenario, and there are those who want a long-guarded secret to remain just that.

Clark's admirers -- and they are many -- will know exactly what to expect from this latest book; it will glean no literary prizes, but will give great pleasure to those who have followed the writer's career over many years. --Barry Forshaw


'This book is written skilfully in short chapters and moves at a fairly rapid pace, to say more aboit it would spoil the story. The author has certainly lived up to her excellent reputation and I have no hesitation recommending this as a delightful summer read' New Books, February Issue

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Again, up to her usual standard 25 Jun 2010
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Once again MHC has written a attention grabbing book. In fact it arrived at 08.00am and I had finished by 8.00pm the next day and then had nothing to look forward to only jobs I had put on hold. I like the fact that there is no excessive descriptions of violence, no bad language etc., but plenty of suspense and thrills. Even if you guess who the villian is, it still makes you go on reading it to see how it all comes together at the end. I read a lot of book but MHC is the only writer whose books I eagerly await coming out in print.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A joy to read (as always) 21 May 2010
What an absolulute treat reading a Mary Higgins Clark book is! I always know I'm in for a good read when I pick up the Queen of Suspenses books.

In this book, her latests (published last month), thirty-two year old Dr Monica Farrell is at the centre of a plot to keep her from what is rightfully hers. Although she doesn't know it (as her father was adopted as a baby and never knew his real family) she is heir to The Gannon Corporation, run by a quartet of greedy, cheating men who will stop at nothing to make sure Monica doesn't find out that the corporation belongs to her, including murder.

Monica, who is a Pediatrician at a Manhattan Hospital, recieves a tip that an elderly lady, Olivia Morrow, may have some information regarding her fathers birth family and agrees to meet her at her appartment. However, when she arrives the next day she is too late; Olivia is already dead. When several others also turn up dead, and Monica herself appears to be the next target, it's the old race against time to see who will triumph.

As with all her books, Higgins Clark, manages to entice you to keep turning those pages by way of short chapters and no uneccessary detail. There is, however, one thing that does bother me at the end which I can't really go into here as it may spoil the book for some people. It is something that is revealed in the letters at the end of the book and if anyone reads this and wants to discuss please do add a comment below as I would like to see if the same thing bothers you as it did me.

That said, this book still gets full marks from me!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top entertainment to keep you awake all night! 17 May 2010
By Sissel M. Østdahl TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Mary Higgins Clark who has for years proved what an excellent storyteller she is, has once again produced a brilliant novel. Fast-paced, clever characterization and based on an extraordinary story.

Pediatrician Dr. Monica Farrell's father was adopted and has all through his life tried to find his real ancestors. That never happened, but now, two generations later, eighty three year old Olivia Morrow, failing in health and the last of her line, is faced with the choice of exposing a long-held family secret, or take it with her to her grave.

As always in matters of family and inheritance, it's all - or at least mostly - about money. People will go far in getting what they believe, or want to believe, is theirs, even murder.

The author keeps us on our toes to the very end. Short chapters. No unneccessary drawn out details cum explanations. To the point. Top entertainment to keep you awake all night.

Praise for Mary Higgins Clark!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Dynasty and St. Catherine 30 July 2011
By Jane Baker VINE VOICE
It's been sometime since I read a novel by MHC. I was always an avid fan of her thrilling plots. I had forgotten the number of characters she enmeshes in her novels and had to refer back several times to refresh my memory of where they fitted in to the story. The Gannons were not very interesting considering their central role, very flat characters, whilst Dr Monica and Olivia were rounded and developed. This is not her best work. Was the plot plausible? I think not. Why the title? - I'm still trying to work that one out. Worth a read but not life-changing.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing 16 May 2011
By Rosie
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Having enjoyed a number of this author's previous books, I found several of the main characters in this one bland and two-dimensional. The story never really engaged me.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The shadow of your smile 25 Aug 2010
Format:Audio CD
Loved it from start to finish bought a few more of Mary Clarks books and have loved the all up to now.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another great mystery from MHC 18 Aug 2011
I don't know how she does it but MHC continually produces high quality, suspenseful mysteries which keep you turning the pages! The Shadow of your smile is an enjoyable thriller that I couldn't put down. Thoroughly enjoyed it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very exciting book 11 Jun 2011
This is a really excellent and exciting book. I read it in a day because I could not put it down until I finished!
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