In her long career as America’s most beloved suspense writer, Mary Higgins Clark’s The Lost Years is her most astonishing and dramatic novel to date. At its center is a discovery that, if authenticated, may be the most revered document in human history—“the holiest of the holy”—and certainly the most coveted and valuable object in the world.
Dr. Jonathan Lyons, a seventy-year-old biblical scholar, believes he has found the rarest of parchments—a letter that may have been written by Jesus Christ. Stolen from the Vatican library in the fifteenth century, it was assumed to be lost forever. Under the promise of secrecy, Jonathan attempts to confirm his findings with several other biblical experts. But on the eve before his own murder, he confides to Father Aiden O’Brien, a family friend, that one of those whom he trusted most is determined to keep it from being returned to the Vatican.
The next evening Jonathan Lyons is found shot to death in his New Jersey home. His daughter, twenty-seven-year-old Mariah, finds her father’s body sprawled over his desk in his study, a fatal bullet wound in the back of his neck, and her mother, Kathleen, an Alzheimer’s victim, hiding in the study closet, incoherent and clutching the murder weapon. The police suspect Kathleen, who in her lucid moments knows that Jonathan was involved with a much younger woman.
But Mariah believes the key to her father’s death is tied to another question: Where is the missing parchment? Whom, among his close circle of friends, might he have consulted? And did one of them kill to keep possession of the letter?
What Mariah doesn’t know is that there was an eyewitness to the murder, someone whose unwise attempt to blackmail the killer begins a new circle of death, with Mariah as the ultimate target of one person’s obsession with a priceless historical treasure.
With all the elements that have made her a worldwide bestselling author, Mary Higgins Clark’s The Lost Years is at once a breathless murder mystery and a hunt for what may be the most precious religious and archeological treasure of all time.
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