Author: Mariah Stewart
Title: Mercy Street
Publication Date: 2008
Number of Pages: 302 pages
Part of a Series: Mercy Street Foundation Trilogy, 1st book of 3
- Romantic Suspense novels
Geographical Setting/ Time Period: United States/current- 2000s
- Mallory Russo, love interest
- Charlie Wanamaker
Plot Summary: Mallory Russo left the police force and started writing novels. She is a talented policewoman, though, and left behind that reputation despite the rumors that ultimately forced her to leave the force. However, a local case finds her involved as a Private Investigator and from this case she realizes she has a gift for perception and detection and thinks she finally found someone who realizes she isn’t a loner as much as she pretends to be.
Appeal: The appeal of the novel stems from several aspects. First, it is a quick paced read that is carried through the suspenseful events (i.e. murders, missing people, a police detective with whom the main character is attracted but isn’t sure if he can be trusted) which happen almost every chapter as well as plenty of dialog to explain thoughts, opinions, and actions. Another appeal factor is the main character of the novel who is an independent (calls herself a loner, but we find out that may just be a mask), private, smart, sleek, and pretty private detective. A third appeal factor is the plot line which is suspenseful but also follows the end oriented rule of romance where a reader expects a happy ending in the fact that both the heroine and the love interest are safe and moving forward.
Brief quote: [Mallory speaking to her love interest, Charlie] “I’ve made good progress on the book I was working on, but frankly, it just isn’t doing it for me. I think maybe the idea appealed to me because it kept me connected to my years as a cop, and when I left the force, I really needed that connection…But I miss working on cases, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t. I wasn’t even aware of how much until the past few weeks.” (p. 300)
Similar Works: A similar work would be the To Die Series by Lisa Jackson which feature a female detective and fall within the romantic suspense genre. Another similar work would be the In Death Series by J.D. Robb which also feature a female detective and fall within the romantic suspense genre.
Reviewer’s Name: Taryn Kingery
Adapted from Saricks, Joyce G. and Nancy Brown. Readers’ Advisory Service in the Public Library 2nd. Chicago: ALA, 1997.