Reviewed by Lauren Cannavino

Mariah Lyons is faced with a perilous situation as a young woman in Mary Higgins Clark’s latest novel of mystery and suspense. Mariah’s father, Jonathan, a prominent biblical scholar, is found murdered in the study of her childhood home. Mariah’s mother, Kathleen, who suffers from Alzheimer’s, is found at the same time, covered in blood and clutching the gun in her arms. Mariah, while fighting through her own insurmountable grief, must fight to not only preserve her father’s memory, but also prove to police that her beautiful mother is innocent of the murder. There is much more to the story than the seemingly perfect family presents at first glance: Jonathan had been having an affair for years with a colleague, a relationship that was discovered by both Mariah and Kathleen prior to his murder.

Aside from his affair, it was revealed that Dr. Jonathan Lyons had also come into possession of a rare, much discussed and highly desired Biblical document before his death. This document was believed to be written by Jesus Christ himself and had been stolen from the Vatican hundreds and hundreds of years before. After Jonathan is murdered, it quickly becomes evident how important this document was not only to history, but also to those that would stop at nothing to possess it.

As the novel wears on, Mariah must overcome her own hurt from her father’s affair in order to help free her mother, who is arrested for the crime, and find out not only where the sacred document is, but who may be after it. Mariah also comes to find out that she is also sought after, almost as much as the priceless document is.

Mary Higgins Clark weaves The Lost Years in the way that only she can do. She manages to create characters of all backgrounds, ages and social status and make them all equally critical to the telling of the tale. The author is also able to incorporate in the Biblical facts and information of the highly sought after document without pulling away from the murder mystery and Mariah’s plight at hand.

Mary Higgins Clark really is a master of this genre and The Lost Years will not let the author’s steadfast fans down. The novel is quick, Mariah is strong as well as sympathetic, and the cast of characters keeps you guessing about what is coming next and who is to blame for the crime.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Lauren Cannavino is a graduate student, freelance writer, wine lover, and avid reader. Random musings can be found over at www.goldiesays.com.

A review copy was provided free of any obligation by Simon & Schuster. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.