Mysteries by Merry Bloch Jones



Now available
from St. Martin's Minotaur

A taut, fast-paced suspense novel in the tradition of Mary Higgins Clark, The Deadly Neighbors again features the tension-packed storytelling of the talented Merry Jones.

In this third novel featuring art therapist Zoe Hayes, the neighbors are shocked when a woman's body is discovered in the kitchen of Zoe’s estranged father, Walter. In fact, they suspect Walter of killing her. But as Zoe investigates further, it seems that the neighbors are up to some pretty shocking shenanigans themselves.

As Zoe tries to prove her father’s innocence, she encounters a cruel ring of organized criminals who specialize in dark and deadly forms of entertainment. Trying to escape their grasp, Zoe—with her daughter, Molly, in tow—must solve a series of grisly murders, but in the process, stumbles into secrets that force her to reconnect with a lost and very frightening part of her own past….


The Nanny Murders
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(Thomas Dunne Books, St. Martins Press, 2005; paperback, 2006)

The first in the Zoe Hayes mystery series, The Nanny Murders is a mesmerizing page-turner about missing nannies who have disappeared, one by one, from a close-knit Philadelphia community.

Zoe Hayes, who works as an art therapist in an institute for seriously deranged patients, is the single mother of an adopted and adorable little girl named Molly. Zoe gets involved in the missing nannies case when Molly, playing in the snow, makes a grisly discovery—She finds a piece of litter that turns out to be a human finger.

One of Zoe’s neighbors (but which one?) seems to be a serial killer. Zoe and a mysteriously scarred detective named Nick Stiles team up to catch the killer when suddenly Zoe becomes the prey….


“A brooding nightmare with twists and turns to the very last page.”
FAYE KELLERMAN, author of Street Dreams

“The NANNY MURDERS is a fine debut, fast-paced and full of heart. Merry Jones maintains a grip on the reader from the first page and doesn’t let up.”
ROBERT FERRIGNO, author of The Wake Up

“Wow. What a zinger of a mystery! Zoe Hayes, like the inner-city block she lives on, is in perpetual, chaotic transition: a forty-one-year-old single mom intent on raising an adopted daughter, connecgting with friends, and making a life that does not include nannynapping and murder. Zoe is smart, tough, and tender; the mystery is taut, the settings vivid, the characters authentic. This may be Merry Jones’s first novel, but she is already an accomplished writer.”
SUSAN WITTIG ALBERT, best-selling author of the China Bayles mystery series

“Merry Jones has created her own new brand of riveting suspense in this page-turning series debut.”
KAREN HARPER, Mary Higgins Clark Award-winning author of DARK ANGEL and the Elizabeth I mysteries

The River Killings
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(Thomas Dunne Books, St. Martins Minotaur, 2006; paperback due winter, 2007)

The sequel to THE NANNY MURDERS, Jones’s suspense novel, THE RIVER KILLINGS weaves a gripping, fast-paced tale set on Philadelphia’s famous Boathouse Row. It begins just a few months after the previous book has ended, involving many of the same characters.

On summer vacation from her art therapy job, Zoe takes a sculling class for fun with her best friend, Susan Cummings. One evening, while her daughter waits with Susan’s children at the boathouse on the banks of the Schuylkill River, Zoe rows off with Susan to practice for an upcoming regatta. When Susan’s oar catches on some flotsam (which turns out to be a woman’s dress), the boat flips, and the two find themselves in deep waters with not just one but an entire throng of floating bodies.

Someone along Boathouse Row is a multiple murderer, but who? And why?

One night, after Zoe’s boyfriend, Detective Nick Stiles, goes to the river but doesn’t return, Zoe and Molly go looking for him and, unexpectedly, Zoe uncovers a sinister plot, far broader and deadlier than she has anticipated, and far more difficult to escape.


“A page-turning success…Hard to put down."

“Fast-paced fun…will leave readers breathless.”

“Absolutely fantastic…a character-driven whodunit with plenty of action.”

“Superb…Brilliant. Chilling. Riveting.”
CAROLYN HART, author of the Death on Demand series.

Merry's Latest!

The Borrowed and Blue Murders
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