On The Street Where You Live by Mary Higgins Clark


On the Street Where You Live

This being the second book by Clark that I’ve read, I would like recommend her books. There seems to be a pattern (and others attested to the same) that Clark uses few objectionable elements. There are few curse words and little else, excepting some violence.

If you haven’t read Clark, start with this excellent book. Clark typically has a female lead that ends up embroiled in a criminal investigation of some sort, almost like a modern adult Nancy Drew. I appreciate that Clark does not focus to much on the lead’s emotions as this makes the book more accessible to us guys.

In this tale, Emily Graham migrates her residency to the New Jersey coastal town of Spring Lake where she purchases her ancestral home. Driven to Spring Lake to escape a slimy nasty ex-husband and to escape memories of a now institutionalized deranged stalker, Graham hopes for a peaceful weekend residence; her “real home” being an apartment in New York City. Mix in a historical serial killer that plagued Spring Lake 100 years earlier, add a recent set of murders and simmer…..

The first of the three historical victims (all young women) was a great aunt of Emily Graham. Now, two young women had vanished;yes Emily has been marked to be the third. The day after Emily takes possession of the new home, workers digging for a pool discover two corpses buried in the backyard: one has been buried for 3-4 years, the other for more than a century.

With a few weeks before her new job begins, Emily has time to kill. Considering that the two corpses (one being that of her great aunt) were side by side, Emily is convinced that there a connection exists between both sets of murders. Naturally, she begins to explore the past to solve the present.

Clark creates an engrossing story that brings the past to life and immerses the reader into the events. Drama and mystery with plenty of red herrings and sub plots fill every page. I did semi-confidently predict who the killer was, but I can’t honestly say that I was certain till the killer was revealed and all explained. Considering my reasoning, it was probably more of a lucky guess.

But most intriguingly, Clark explored an interesting concept: can a serial killer be reincarnated? She doesn’t say either way, but it is interesting. One character argues that only good people can be reincarnated, but Clark leaves the idea for pondering.

As a Christian, I reject the idea of reincarnation in any form, but it still creates an interesting idea to ponder.

Have you ever read any of Mary Higgins Clark? If so, which of her titles would you recommend?

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7 thoughts on “On The Street Where You Live by Mary Higgins Clark

  1. Wow, sounds like my kind of book, I love a good mystery. I have never read a book by Mary Higgens Clark, but I am now inspired to do so.
    Thanks for the review, it was great.

  2. Inspired eh? That might be stretching plausibility. I can’t write that well….

    But thanks for the compliment. You will enjoy this book; or at least I hope so…..

  3. I’ve never read anything by Clark, but it sounds like she has an interesting worldveiw. Ads for BBC versions of her work appear on tv sometimes, and her stories look rather violent. Which, I grant, is an aspect easily manipulated by television.

  4. My wife taped several of her TV movies, but I have yet to see them. Judging from her books, the violence is there, but not necessarily graphic.

    I suspect that it would be graphic if displayed on TV, but fortunately books obscure that element (usually).

    So, don’t let that stop you. Even people that I know who aren’t interested in violent content don’t mind Clark.

  5. Good point. My favorite writers are ones who leave the majority of details to your imagination (allowing some “personalization” of the story to suit one’s own tastes). What is your “imaginative taste”? Mine is alot like a Romantic era painting; no blood, no unsightly bruises or dirt, and the camera simply pans away for anything requiring the above (like death, which means I love murder mystery books but am not fond of the tv versions much). And I can’t stand animals or plants that talk because my mind brings up a disney-fied cartoon!

  6. Like you, I prefer not to have explicit violence. That is one of the factors that made the movie “The Grudge” so enticing AND frightening. There are suggestions of violence and violent acts, but you never actually see them. That was scarier.

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