The Shadow of Your Smile by Mary Higgins Clark

shadowsmileGenre: Thriller
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: April 2010

Olivia Morrow is dying, but she faces a horrible choice. Her deceased cousin, Catherine, touched many lives as a nun. Now the Catholic Church is considering her for sainthood. But a secret torments Olivia and threatens to destroy Catherine’s post-mortem sainthood. With days left to live, should she speak the truth or take it to her grave?

Dr. Monica Farrell is a young, attractive pediatrician, loved by patients and co-workers alike. Her background, however, remains a mystery. During his lifetime, her father tried everything to uncover the identity of his birth parents. Years later, after a series of chance events, Monica finds herself calling a complete stranger who knew Monica’s birth grandparents. This stranger is none other than Olivia Morrow.

Unfortunately, before the two women can meet, Olivia passes away in her sleep. But what originally seems like a natural death leaves Monica unsettled. The more Monica searches, the more questions arise, and with it the certainty of foul play.

Olivia’s one true love, the late Alex Gannon, famous doctor and scientist who created a fortune in medical patents, died loving another — Catherine. In his will, he left his wealth to any possible child he may have fathered. But through extravagant lifestyles and bad choices, his nephews Greg and Peter Gannon have squandered the estate with the help of their fellow board members. Should someone ever step forward to claim the inheritance, the truth of their exploitation would come to light. Silence is vital to the board members of the Gannon foundation, crucial enough to kill for.

So Mary Higgins sets the scene for her latest novel, The Shadow of Your Smile, with a wide range of unique characters all with seemingly separate subplots. As their worlds narrow, their lives overlap to form a common thread sprinkled with lies, hope, fear, and murder. Clark is one of the few authors I’ve found who can juggle so many characters without losing the reader. Her mind works in such intricate ways that she delicately weaves complex and intriguing webs that draw the reader in and hold them captive until the last word.

As in most of her books, Clark explores a controversial issue. In the case of The Shadow of Your Smile, she deals with the seemingly exclusive worlds of medical science and religious faith. Refreshingly, Clark’s novels are “clean” offering a great read without vulgarity to anyone who loves an invigorating thriller. I strongly recommend them.

Review copy provided by Simon and Schuster.

**Originally posted on Fiction Addict.


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