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Dying for Mercy (Key News Thrillers) Hardcover – July 28, 2009


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

At the start of bestseller Clark's smooth third Eliza Blake puzzler (after It Only Takes a Moment), the KEY to America TV host is looking forward to attending a party to celebrate the feast day of St. Francis of Assisi at Ennis and Valentina Wheelock's newly renovated villa in Tuxedo Park, N.Y. Soon after Ennis's suicide by stigmata in the villa's greenhouse puts an end to the party, someone begins killing anyone who knows too much about the Wheelocks' connection to a 20-year-old cold case involving an abandoned convertible and its missing owner, landscaper Martin O'Shaughnessy. Each murder mimics aspects of the Passion of Jesus Christ. As Eliza and her three KEY co-workers, who have dubbed themselves the Sunrise Suspense Society, swing into action, Eliza must fight to avoid becoming headline news herself as the killer's next victim. Those curious about Tuxedo Park will appreciate the well-researched portrait of the real-life exclusive community. (Aug.)
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Review

“Clark has perfected the suspense novel . . . in classic Christie fashion.” (Booklist)

Clark’s latest rivals Christie’s best. Her short, to-the-point chapters, lucid prose, numerous suspects and faceless murderer’s creepy monologues keep the suspense at its chilliest level — and move the story forward at a brisk clip. One of Clark’s — and the genre’s — best. (Associated Press)

“smooth . . . Those curious about Tuxedo Park will appreciate the well-researched portrait of the real-life exclusive community.” (Publishers Weekly)

As always, Clark gives the reader a strong trail of red herrings. This is another satisfying look at the behind-the-scenes world of television network news tied around an intriguing puzzle (Booklist)
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Product Details

  • Series: Key News Thrillers
  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; 1 edition (July 28, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061286117
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061286117
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,090,038 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Mary Jane Clark is the New York Times bestselling author of fourteen novels: 12 KEY News media thrillers and 2 Piper Donovan/Wedding Cake Mysteries. A former writer and producer at CBS News in New York City, Clark is the daughter of an FBI agent and mother of two. She lives in Florida and New Jersey.

Customer Reviews

She keeps you turning pages.
shinerite
I thought I would have a quick look and could barely put it down until I finished!
Lili
Unfortunately, it came off as contrived and the ending was disappointing.
Sue

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By A Longtime Mystery Lover on July 30, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Mary Jane Clark's latest, Dying for Mercy, is her most imaginative suspense novel yet. Beginning with a gruesome suicide, the story just gallops forward as Eliza Blake, Clark's savvy heroine, begins an investigation and soon comes across an intricate puzzle left behind by the dead man - a puzzle meant to expose the perpetrators of a long-forgotten crime. Eliza is joined by her KEY News colleagues, Annabelle Murphy, B.J. D'Elia and Margo Gonzalez - dubbed the Sunrise Suspense Society - and as each puzzle piece is unearthed, a killer is hiding in the shadows to make sure that a 20-year-old mystery never comes to light. Eliza's on-again, off-again romance with Mack McBride seems to be deepening, but as the killer closes in on Eliza, Mack becomes "collateral damage." The Associated Press review says it all: "As Agatha Christie did with her classic `And Then There Were None,' Clark . . . deftly combines the clue-searching and puzzle-solving fun of mysteries with the action-packed, emotion-driven narrative thrust of thrillers." This is a fast-moving and inspired tale that takes place in New York State's Tuxedo Park, a walled-in enclave for the rich and famous - and in Clark's latest, no amount of wealth or status can keep these pampered residents safe. The killer thinks that some puzzles probably shouldn't be solved, but Mary Jane Clark fuels this page-turner with enough puzzle-solving fun - and menace - that getting to the explosive finale is a nail-biting joyride!
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Barb P on August 21, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have read all of Mary's books,and impatiently waited for my pre-ordered copy of Dying for Mercy. I found the book to be cryptic in many ways. I thought that the suicide was even more bizarre when I discovered his reasons for doing it. The puzzle and its pieces seemed contrived, and their discovery too coincidental. The links and relationship of the clues had to be explained because the reader could surmise nothing on his or her own. As I approached the last few chapters, I couldn't wait for the story to be over because it just didn't all come together for me. Not being familiar with the saga of Francis of Assisi also restricted my appreciation for the story.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Lunajumper on July 30, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I found this mystery to be very engrossing. The way the mystery was revealed bit by bit kept my interest going. I love a good puzzle, and the way that the mystery was laid out as a large puzzle/treasure hunt was very appealing. From the start, it was unclear even what sort of mystery we were dealing with, which made it all the more intriguing. I enjoyed getting to know the characters, and the Italy themes that were incorporated added a nice touch. Overall I really enjoyed this book.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Kelly Hogan on August 15, 2009
Format: Kindle Edition
I expected there to be more puzzle pieces in the puzzle. I also think the climax was more of a "they went to all this trouble for that reason?" than a "Wow, that was something"
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Lili on July 30, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I picked up Mary Jane Clark's latest at Union Square on my way home, day before yesterday, thinking I would read it this weekend. I thought I would have a quick look and could barely put it down until I finished! I've been a fan of Mary Jane Clark's work since Do You Want To Know A Secret, but in Dying for Mercy she has truly reached new heights. I loved breathing in the rarefied (and, often deadly) air of Tuxedo Park, New York and immediately engaged with her well-drawn characters, following every twist and turn (hah!) as Eliza and her Key crew race to catch the killer. Clark writes smart, what a pleasure! Great, satisfying summer read!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Aunt Rosie on April 18, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This is the first book I have read by Mary Jane Clark. Read it in large print that helped to read it faster. In the beginning, I needed a score card to keep track of all the characters. The story is about the rich who live within a secluded community with a guard gate to keep the common people out. They have they're perfect community of estates, golf, tennis, sailing, and rolling hills. This rich community of people do not have jobs because they live off old money. They have nothing to do but attend parties to raise money for charity and keep common people employed as servants. The book is about one family from this snobby community and their big secret involving adultery and the murder of a lover 22 years ago. The main character, a woman, a former governor of NY, had an affair with the lawn keeper of her estate, who was a hunk and didn't shoot blanks, while she ran for governor of NY. The affair resulted in a child with her lover who disappears. A successful cover up designed by her husband, he knew of her affair, finds religion 22 years later and develops a guilty conscience. Then all hell breaks loose after the husband of the former governor kills himself and leaves clues about the cover up. Twenty two years later, four people are murdered for a crime they knew nothing about because the murderer thought they did. No one blinks an eye today if politicians commit adultrey and have a child from the affair. It's an okay story but some loose ends are not tied up.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Steven James on November 23, 2009
Format: Paperback
Mary Jane Clark is the unofficial successor to the "Queen of Suspense" similarly named Mary Higgins Clark. DYING FOR MERCY is Clark's latest magnus opus and arguably her best to date. Eliza Blake, her comely damsel in distress, reaches new heights and seems to grow male body parts in this puzzling, twisting tale of murder and deception. Eliza is ready to kick some butt this time around, even attending a fundraiser for The Special Olympics mere hours after nearly being killed. I loved all the references to Saint Francis of Asissi and, as a somewhat lapsed Catholic, I appreciated the refresher course in the rituals of the Catholic Church as well as the history lesson on Jesus' crucifixion. The chapters in this book are short and to the point. I found myself flying through them and having a hard time putting the book down even though it was WAY past my bedtime (I paid for it today at work...argh!) The ending of this book seemed a bit rushed, and I never did find out what happened to Susannah, the wannabee Black Tie Club member. A considerable amount of attention was paid to Susannah throughout the story but we never heard what became of her...did she gain membership in the club? Probably not important but I tend to pick up on weird and sometime insignificant nuances while reading. Overall, I found DYING FOR MERCY to be an extremely interesting and puzzling book. Highly recommended for all readers and age groups.
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