Mercy Street (Mercy Street #1) by Mariah Stewart

StewartMercyStreetReleased: February 24, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Pages: 388
Publisher: Ballantine Books
ISBN-13: 978-0-345-49227-2

It’s a new year and one of my resolutions is to read outside of the urban fantasy genre more. I’ve found myself reading urban fantasy almost exclusively and so I want to get back to some of the other types of books I like. And so I picked up “a novel of suspense.” That’s how the cover describes Mercy Street. I’m not so sure I’d say that since it’s more of a novel that tries to be suspenseful but it’s still a decent read.

Mallory Russo is an ex-cop who gets hired to investigate what happened one night in a park that left two teenagers dead and another two missing in Conroy, Pennsylvania. Everyone else figures that the missing teens are the ones who did it but there’s some doubt in the families, which is where Mallory comes in. Her investigation is financed by billionaire Robert Magellan, whose wife and child went missing over a year before the story takes place. Along the way, she meets cute with her replacement on the police force, Charlie Wanamaker, a hometown boy who went to Philadelphia to be a cop in the big city. Circumstances have called him home, though, and the two of them pair up to figure out what’s going on.

The story itself is fine and dandy. Things move along in a pretty straightforward manner even though there’s nothing extraordinary about the plot. Mercy Street is your standard detective story except for the fact that Mallory’s a PI, but even that isn’t atypical. All in all, it’s an okay book but I don’t think this is a series to invest in. It’s hard to care about the characters that much and there are many more compelling authors in the genre. That being said, I can see myself borrowing the other books from the library somewhere down the line – I just don’t feel any urgency to visit these characters again.

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