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Silent Night Book Review

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Title: Silent Night
Author: Mary Higgins Clark
Published: 1995, Simon & Schuster
No. of Pages: 154
Cover Price: $16.00 US



Mary Higgins Clark, who is considered The Queen of Suspense, is the author of Silent Night, and over the years, it has become a Christmas Classic. The story begins on Christmas Eve in Rockefeller Center where Catherine Dornan and her sons, 7 year old Brian and his older brother, Michael are looking at the decorations and listening to a violin player play Christmas carols. The family has traveled to New York from their home in Omaha because Tom Dornan, a pediatrician and Catherine’s husband, has just been diagnosed with leukemia and has had emergency surgery by a close friend from medical school. Catherine gets out her wallet to get dollar bills to give to her boys for the violinist and carelessly puts it back into her purse; it falls to the ground without her knowledge. Cally Hunter, who has recently been released from prison (for a crime she did not commit), picks it up on impulse and takes off for home. Cally isn’t sure who the wallet belongs to, and in her mind, she plans to send it to the owner through the mail.

Brian sees Cally pick up the wallet and follows her to get it back. Besides having money and credit cards, the wallet contains a St. Christopher medal that saved the life of Brian’s grandfather many years ago; the boys are planning to give it to their father because they believe it will also save his life.

Unfortunately, Cally’s brother, Jimmy, who is serving a prison term for murdering a policeman, has escaped and shot a guard on his way out; he breaks in to his sister’s home just before she returns from Rockefeller Center. He is confronting her when Brian demands the wallet, so Jimmy not only takes the wallet, but also kidnaps Brian, steals a car, and takes off for Canada. Jimmy threatens his sister that if she reports him, he will kill Brian.

The story is suspenseful throughout, and it seems that those who are trying to make things right, are making things worse. Not only is the Dornan family worried about Tom, but now Catherine and Michael are trying to locate Brian, which adds even more stress for them. Catherine doesn’t want Tom to know Brian is missing because she is afraid it will make him worse.

Silent Night isn’t at all like dozens of Christmas books with sappy plots and unlikely scenarios. The story is good, and since it is short, is perfect for reading during the busy holidays when reading time is at a minimum.

Even though this is a good story and there is suspense throughout, the ending is fairly predictable, and is not a huge surprise like some other suspense/thriller books.

For readers who like suspense, and enjoy reading Christmas stories during the holiday season, this book is recommended. It is well-written, fast moving, and fun.

This book was purchased with personal funds and no promotion of the book was solicited by the author or publisher.

This book may be purchased at Amazon: Silent Night

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