Mary Higgins Clark ©Bernard Vidal

I don´t know if it was 4 am or 4:30 or even later when I saw at my Instagram feed in the early morning hours of today a post by her publisher Simon & Schuster, telling the world the sad news that Mary Higgins Clark had died in the evening hours of January 31, 2020. I had to read it a few times to realize that it was really the announcement of her passing. To say that I am sad is an understatement. Over the past thirty years, I´ve read many of her books, some of them I literally breathed in during an overnight reading session while I needed a few days to read others of her work. Yes, not every book could thrill me but most of her work did.

Mary Higgins Clark was born on December 24, 1927, in New York City and started writing at the age of 35 when her first husband died. Throughout her writing career, she´s published 56 books and sold more than 100 million copies of her work in the US alone. Her work is translated into 35 languages and until today she is called “Queen of Suspense" by her fans around the world. 

Her books “A Stranger is Watching” and “The Cradle will Fall” were adapted into films. Not that I want to focus too much on the money part of her career but in 2002 she got awarded by her publishing company with a $64 million contract for five more books, which made her, at that time, the highest-paid female author in the world. 

For me, it was always wonderful to read about her heroines. Strong, independent and well-situated women who all had a strong belief in themselves but somehow got into a bad situation. The fact that they all found support by some dear friends and a male figure whom they mostly fell in love with, was a combination that worked well for Mary Higgins Clark and the success of her work. She didn´t need to show sex in her books to be accepted by her readers. I, as the reader, always knew that there was not only a happy end for the protagonist but also that the case got solved. And I either knew from the beginning who the evil person was and could watch the others figure it out or I had to unravel the mystery myself while reading. Which wasn´t less fun as the other way around. Mary Higgins Clark always knew how to keep her readers turning the page, how to get them involved in her murder cases and although she always used the palest person as the evil one, I couldn´t always figure out who it was before the end of the book. That didn´t bother me at all because it was always more or less thrilling to watch her figures find out who the real killer was. 

To know, that her creative work has now come to an end and that there will be no more waiting for her next new release (when it comes to her original English editions) is a sad reality I still can´t believe is true. 

Rest in Peace, Mary Higgins Clark

Your sad fan


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