Silent Night

Mary Higgins Clark, the Queen of Suspense, has given us Silent Night, a short, suspenseful novel set during the Christmas holidays, but with more substance than the usual saccharine sweet stories set in that season. It was intended to be an enjoyable, light read for the Christmas season, which is probably why it isn’t up to her usual standards of intricately woven mysteries, and is a bit predictable.

Set against a background of crime and a medical crisis, this is the story of a mother whose son is taken at the worst possible time. Catherine Dornan has taken her children to New York City where their father is hospitalized for leukemia. While taking the children to soak up some of the city’s festive holiday atmosphere, Catherine doesn’t realize she has dropped her wallet.

A young woman, Cally, steals the wallet. Catherine’s son follows Cally, and is kidnapped by Cally’s abusive brother. Cally feels guilty for the theft. Her brother does not.

Will Cally have the courage to turn in her brother to the police? Will the children’s father recover? This heartwarming story is a wonderful example of the courage of a young woman struggling to do the right thing, and the fear of a family at risk of losing their husband and father. It is another great holiday read.

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