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Nancy's Notes - March 17, 2011

“Fadeaway Girl” by Martha Grimes, “The Shadow of Your Smile" by Mary Higgins Clark, “Echo” by Jack McDevitt,

Martha Grimes' newest, “Fadeaway Girl”, is the sequel to “Belle Ruin”. Emma Graham returns still waitressing in her mother’s decaying summer hotel. She is also a cub reporter for the local paper as well as an amateur sleuth.  Emma is hard on the trail of the truth behind several old intertwined crimes: three murders, an attempted murder and a kidnapping. 

One of the most popular mystery writers, Mary Higgins Clark, has written, “The Shadow of Your Smile”. The story revolves around a family secret. At age eighty-two Olivia Morrow knows she has little time left. She faces a momentous choice, whether to expose a long-held family secret or take it with her to her grave. Olivia has in her possession letters from her deceased cousin Catherine, a nun, now being considered for beatification by the Catholic Church. In her lifetime, Sister Catherine has founded seven hospitals for disabled children. Now the cure of a four-year-old boy dying of brain cancer is being attributed to her. The letters Olivia holds are the evidence that Catherine gave birth at age seventeen to a child and gave him up for adoption. Olivia knows the identity of the young man who fathered Catherine’s child. Now, two generations later, Dr. Monica Farrell, Catherine’s granddaughter, stands as the rightful heir to what remains of the family fortune. But in telling Monica who she really is, Olivia would have to betray Catherine’s wishes and reveal the story behind Monica’s ancestry.

Jack McDevitt’s latest is entitled, “Echo”. During eight thousand years of star-travel capability, humans have encountered only one alien species. Sunset Tuttle spent his lifetime looking for others in vain. Twenty-five years later a discovery is made: a stone tablet inscribed with cryptic markings, now in the possession of Tuttle’s onetime lover Rachel Bannister. Alex Benedict, eager to attempt a translation, wants to examine it. But Bannister turns him down. Benedict becomes determined to figure out what secret the tablet holds and why Bannister doesn’t want it revealed.

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