Gina's Reviews > Mercy Street

Mercy Street by Mariah Stewart
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Mar 24, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: group-reads, own, mystery, romantic-suspense
Recommended for: mystery/romantic suspense lovers
Read in July, 2009 , read count: 1

** spoiler alert ** There is more than one plot in this book, but the story only focuses on one.

First piece: Robert Magellan, self-made millionaire. His wife and son disappeared over two years ago, vanished without a trace. PI after PI were hired, never finding a thing.

Second piece: and the one that's focused on: a double homicide and two missing teenagers. Police are looking for the missing teens, the age-old addage: teens on the run are guilty teens. But, to the families and friends who know Courtney and Ryan, they know the kids aren't guilty. Mrs. Corcoran, Ryan's grandmother, with the help of Kevin, priest and cousin to Robert, convince Robert they need to hire a PI, someone Robert never dealt with before (because he doesn't trust any of his former PI's.) Going to the chief of police, Joe Drabyak, Joe recommends they approach Mallory Russo, ex-detective and one hell of a good one. Mallory had no plans on becoming a PI, but after hearing about the case, her instincts and curiosity start humming.

Charlie Wanamaker has returned to Conroy after finding out how bad things have gotten for his mother and sister from one of their neighbors. Joe has asked that Charlie lend Mallory a hand with the case, off the record of course. Charlie is intrigued with Mallory, despite the rumor mill floating about at the station. Charlie is 'Mallory's replacement' on the force.

Third: A shooter is creating havoc in Conroy. Seems he is shooting at people, but never actually hitting anyone. Every spare detective is on that case, and the double homicide and missing teens, after two weeks, is pushed aside.

-The more Mallory works the case, the more we also learn about her. Brought up by family who didn't really want her but it was the right thing to do because she's a blood relative, Mallory felt she never fit in, was always alone, and learned to watch out for herself. No one else would. When the chief was retiring and Joe was promoted, the slot for Lead Detective was open. The retiring chief put Mallory's name in to fill that slot, but others in the department who had seniority, including her partner, weren't happy with it. When her partner screwed up and Mallory refused to lie for him, the rumors began once her partner was busted back to patrolman. Knowing that she no longer had even her colleagues to watch her back, she resigned.

But now that she's caught 'the bug', investigating the case of the missing teens, she did something she never thought she'd do: applied for a PI license. Investigating, figuring out the puzzle, is what she missed, and is glad to be 'back in the saddle.'

With Charlie, she sifts through ideas, statements and facts, and the more she looks, the more she's convinced that she's right; that Courtney and Ryan are on the run and are hiding. When she figures out why, she knows time is short; she must find the teens before the person who killed their friends does.

**The mystery plot was smooth, the pace just right, the action and climax had me holding my breath. The characters are great, the ones you love and the ones that disgust you. The character development is really good; information is spread out so that you're not overwhelmed. With the smaller plot of the shooting spree, I felt like I could have used just a little more, even though it wasn't part of the actual plot. I'd have loved to hear what Mallory's ex-partner, Cal Whitman, and Detective Toricelli, had to say for themselves.

The more I learned about Mallory, the more I liked her. A strong woman, she stands her ground, even after being shunned by colleagues. No matter the situation, she doesn't back down, doesn't tuck tail and run. She trusts her instincts, and is as fierce as a pitbull, never letting go once her teeth have sunk in.

I really liked Charlie. A stand-up guy, he came back to help his family once he learned how bad things had really gotten after the deaths of his father and younger brother. He trusts his instincts, goes with his gut, and puts things together using facts, sifting through rumors and lies and finding the truth.

In my heart of hearts, Mallory and Charlie are a perfect match.
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07/12/2009 page 101
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