The Cinderella Murder by Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke
|The Cinderella Murder by Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke|
|Reviewer: Louise Jones|
|Summary: A TV producer seeks to open a cold case involving a promising UCLA student found murdered and wearing only one shoe.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 305||Date: November 2014|
|Publisher: Simon and Schuster|
|External links: Author's website|
'Under Suspicion' is a TV show that aims to shed light on cold cases by re-enacting the crime and interviewing those closest to the victim. The pilot episode was a runaway success when it led to the successful apprehension of the murderer and now producer Laurie Moran has been given the green light to continue the series. Her curiosity is piqued by a 20 year old case dubbed the 'Cinderella Murder', in which a bright young UCLA student was found dead in parkland, miles from her car and wearing only one shoe. The investigation will take Laurie and her team to some of the most glamorous locations in California, but it soon becomes clear that certain individuals will do anything to stop the truth from being revealed.
The Cinderella Murder combines the interesting premise of a TV show with spectacular locations and a varied line-up of suspects. Mary Higgins Clark has a reputation for keeping the reader guessing right until the last page and this book was no exception. The murder victim was a bright and beautiful student, as well as an aspiring actress. Could the murderer be the famous TV producer she was going to audition for on that fateful evening, but who claims that she never arrived? Or maybe it was the reclusive internet billionaire, who was secretly in love with her? What about her room-mate Madison, a struggling actress who was secretly jealous of her friend? Or perhaps it was the prime suspect; her womanising, alcoholic boyfriend, who is now supposedly a reformed character after 'finding God'?
The story has plenty of twists and turns and it is clear that most of the characters are hiding significant details about their past for different reasons. Laurie's job is to find out what they are hiding and whether it relates to the murder case. Understandably, there are plenty of red herrings mixed in with the plot, as well as a rising death toll, as Laurie gets nearer to uncovering the truth.
The Cinderella Murder is an absorbing read, although it sometimes does seem to suffer from too many plot threads and ancillary characters. The pace of the book is quite slow, but builds up to a crescendo in the final few chapters. I loved trying to guess who the murderer was; I think I suspected absolutely everyone at some point, which means the author was doing her job well!
This was my first Mary Higgins Clark book, but I'd love to read more books in this series, as I'm interested how the TV show format will develop in future cases. I would also like to note that despite the seemingly-dark subject matter, the book contains no graphic violence, swearing, or sex scenes, which may make it an ideal starting point for younger fans of the genre too. Many thanks to the publishers for my review copy. We also have a review of The Sleeping Beauty Killer (Under Suspicion 4) by Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke.
If you are looking for a good murder mystery to curl up on the sofa with this weekend, try Dead in the Water by Veronyca Bates
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You can read more book reviews or buy The Cinderella Murder by Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke at Amazon.com.
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