by Mary Higgins Clark
How’s this for a chilling start? Meghan Collins, a New York City TV reporter, has been dispatched to St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital to cover the Central Park mugging of a U.S. senator. But an ambulance wheels up with another story: a mid-town stabbing victim. Meghan watches as an oxygen mask is removed from the now lifeless female face. What she sees are…her own features.
Turns out this is the least of Meghan’s problems. Her father, Edwin, partner in an executive employment firm, is missing, presumably lost in a Hudson River bridge accident; but the police and the insurance company believe he is alive and hiding. Her financially strapped mother is about to lose the family inn. At work, there are unexpected snags in Meghan’s story on the Manning Clinic for assisted pregnancies. To top things off, she’s being followed by an obsessive admirer.
The real mystery is how Clark manages to pull a half-dozen dubious plot lines into one compelling and credible narrative. Bouncing from insurance scams to stalkers, domestic deception to office intrigue, unrequited love to in vitro fertilization, she has produced a satisfying page-turner that is one of her strongest books ever. (Simon & Schuster, $23)