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Friday, 4 March 2016

‘All Dressed in White’ by Mary Higgins Clark & Alafair Burke

Published by Simon & Schuster,
10 December 2015.

The story open’s with Amanda Pierce trying on her wedding dress in the Grand Victoria Hotel in Palm Beach on the eve of her hen party. Her longtime friend Kate tells her she looks lovely, but sad, and enquires if Amanda is thinking of their conversation the previous day. Although Amanda reassures her that she has not given the matter a second though, once alone she clearly has misgivings.

Five years on Laurie Moran is preparing for a meeting with her boss, Brett Young. And she is still undecided which story she will pitch for her show Under Suspicion. Before she gets to her meeting her assistant tells her that there is a lady waiting for her in her office.  Sandra Pierce tells her that she is the mother of Amanda Pierce who the media dubbed ‘the Runaway Bride’. Laurie recalls the case but recalls equally that the disappearance of Amanda happened only weeks after Laurie’s husband was shot fatally in front of their then-three-year-old son. Despite her misgivings Laurie listens as Sandra explains that Amanda just disappeared on the eve of her wedding and nothing has been heard of her since. Amanda was to marry her college sweetheart Jeff Hunter, and was also set to inherit her father’s successful garment company.

Although the circumstances surrounding Amanda’s disappearance have placed a big question mark for the police as to whether Amanda just changed her mind about getting married, Laurie realizes a missing bride is the perfect cold case for her 'Under Suspicion' television series to investigate. Amanda's former fiancé is now married to her bridesmaid.  Interviews with relatives and friends reveal that there was friction with the direction in which Amanda was proposing to take the garment factory.  So Laurie decides to recreate the night of the disappearance at the wedding's Florida resort with Amanda's friends and family. 

A tantalising mystery that kept me guessing to the end.  Recommended.
Reviewer: Lizzie Hayes

Mary Higgins Clark is the author of twenty-two worldwide bestselling works of fiction and a memoir. She lives in Saddle River, New Jersey, with her husband.

Alafair Burke is a graduate of Stanford Law School and a former Deputy District Attorney in Portland, Oregon, she is now a Professor of Law at Hofstra Law School, where she teaches criminal law and procedure.  She is the author of “two power house series” (Sun-Sentinel) that have earned her a reputation for creating strong, believable, and eminently likable female characters, such as NYPD Detective Ellie Hatcher and Portland Deputy District Attorney Samantha Kincaid. Alafair’s novels grow out of her experience as a prosecutor in America’s police precincts and criminal courtrooms, and have been featured by The Today Show, People Magazine, The New York Times, MSNBC, The Washington Post, USA Today, and The Chicago Sun-Times.

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