cover image The Lost Years

The Lost Years

Mary Higgins Clark. Simon & Schuster, $26.99 (304p) ISBN 978-1-4516-6886-5

In Clark's tedious new mystery-thriller (after I'll Walk Alone), Biblical scholar Jonathan Lyons discovers a lost manuscript believed to be the only letter written by Jesus Christ. He tries to verify its authenticity with several fellow experts, but is soon found murdered in his study. When the police arrive, they find Jonathan's wife, Kathleen, clutching the murder weapon. Though she suffers from dementia, Kathleen knew of Jonathan's affair with a woman 20 years his junior, Lily. Armed with a motive and damning evidence, the police arrest Kathleen, but authorities soon realize Lily and the manuscript are missing. Jonathan and Kathleen's 28-year-old daughter, Mariah, must now take it upon herself to find her father's real killer and exonerate her confused mother. Though the set-up is intriguing, the mystery falls flat under the weight of dull characters, myriad red herrings, and an excess of unnecessary subplots. Those looking for a fun religious thriller would do better to reread The DaVinci Code. (Apr.)