R.I.P. Mary Higgins Clark.
Who are Alvirah and Willy?
Written by the American “Queen of Suspense” herself, the famous Mary Higgins Clark, the Alvirah and Willy series is, of course, a murder mystery series
Launched in 1987 with the book “Weep No More, My Lady,” the series is about a lottery winner named Alvirah Meehan and her husband Willy, a plumber.
Together, they solve murder mysteries and all sorts of crimes.
Alvirah and Willy Books in Order:
Every book in the Alvirah and Willy series works as a standalone story, but the lives of the different characters evolve from one novel to the other.
- Weep No More, My Lady – Elizabeth Lange has arrived at Cypress Point Spa in Pebble Beach, California, weary of heart and soul. Still grieving for her beloved sister, a famous actress who plunged to her death from her Manhattan penthouse, Elizabeth is determined to unearth the truth about how Leila died. Dashing multimillionaire Ted Winters stands accused of her murder, but Elizabeth has doubts.
- Plumbing For Willy (a novella) – Winning the lottery has made Willy and Alvirah Meehan famous. Now, Alvirah quite enjoys being a guest on a talk show. But fame has its downside: three ex-cons in the viewing audience choose Willy as a kidnapping target. Unfortunately for the criminals, the Meehans haven’t forgotten their old skills.
- The Lottery Winner and Other Stories – Together with her devoted mate, Alvirah has jumped into crime-solving on a grand scale-and with her indomitable spirit and style. This book collects four of their many adventures: “The Body in the Closet,” “Death on the Cape,” “The Lottery Winner,” and “Bye, Baby Bunting.”
- All Through the Night – A woman abandons her newborn at a Manhattan church. Simultaneously, a thief is absconding with a treasured artifact, a chalice adorned with a star-shaped diamond. To elude the police, he grabs the stroller and disappears. Seven years later, the mother returns to the scene and finds Alvirah and Willy helping neighborhood kids prepare for a Christmas pageant at an after-school shelter. Soon the savvy sleuths set out to solve the puzzle of the missing child and chalice.
The next four books were written with Carol Higgins Clark. They are crossovers with the Reagan Reilly series, Carol’s series.
- Deck the Halls – Three days before Christmas, Regan Reilly meets Alvirah Meehan when they both arrive at a dentist’s office. Regan is there in hopes of connecting with her busy father. Once it becomes apparent that Luke Reilly is not going to keep his appointment. When a call comes through on Regan’s cell phone, telling her that her father and his driver, Rosita Gonzalez, are being held for $1,000,000 ransom, Alvirah insists that Regan allow her to lend a hand in trying to gain their release.
- The Christmas Thief – Alvirah Meehan joins forces with private detective Regan Reilly to track down the ninety-foot tree, destined for display in Rockefeller Center, that vanished en route to the city, unaware that the tree contains a secret cache of priceless gems, hidden by scam artist Packey Noonan before being sent to prison.
- Santa Cruise: A Holiday Mystery at Sea – Alvirah Meehan and Regan Reilly are guests, along with their spouses, on the “Santa Cruise.” Alvirah, Regan, and her new husband Jack are joined as guests on the cruise by a mystery fan convention as well as ten men who donated time playing Santa Claus, now hoping for a restful post-season. That tranquility vanishes when two Santa suits disappear from a locked room, a storm develops, and an attempt is made on a passenger’s life.
- Dashing Through the Snow – In the village of Branscombe, the townsfolk are all pitching in to prepare for the Festival of Joy. The night before the festival begins, a group of employees at the local market learns that they have won big in the lottery. One of their co-workers decided at the last minute not to play and goes missing. A second winning lottery ticket was purchased in the next town, but the winner hasn’t come forward. Alvirah Meehan and Regan Reilly have arrived in Branscombe for the festival. They are just the people to find out what is amiss. As they dig beneath the surface, they find that life in Branscombe is not as tranquil as it appears.
- I’ll Walk Alone – Alexandra “Zan” Moreland is haunted by the disappearance of her son two years ago from Central Park. Now, she is terrified to discover that not only is somebody using her credit cards and manipulating her financial accounts but photos have surfaced that seem to implicate her in the kidnapping. Hounded by the press, under investigation by the police, attacked by both her angry ex-husband and a vindictive business rival, Zan sets out to find the mastermind behind the cruel hoax.
- The Lost Years – Dr. Richard Callahan, a world-respected biblical scholar, is astonished when Mariah Lyons shows him a letter left to her by her late father, a distinguished professor of ancient history. The letter, which contains a translation from a 2,000-year-old papyrus scroll, is accompanied by a dusty clay jar and a fragile fragment of papyrus torn from a scroll. If accurate, the translation made by Mariah’s father, an Arabic scholar, shows that the scroll contains a letter in Christ’s own handwriting, and more than that, concerns a pivotal moment in his life. But the rest of the scroll has vanished, and Mariah is aware that somebody else out there wants it.
- As Time Goes By – Television journalist Delaney Wright is on the brink of stardom when she begins covering a sensational murder trial. She should be thrilled with the story of her career, but her growing desire to locate her birth mother consumes her thoughts. When Delaney’s friends Alvirah Meehan and her husband Willy offer to look into the mystery surrounding her birth, they uncover a shocking secret they do not want to reveal.
- All By Myself, Alone – A gems and jewelry expert, Celia Kilbride hopes to escape from public attention by lecturing on a cruise ship. Onboard she meets 86-year-old Lady Emily Haywood – “Lady Em”. Immensely wealthy, Lady Em is the owner of a priceless emerald necklace that she intends to leave to the Smithsonian after the cruise. Three days out to sea, Lady Em is found dead – and the necklace is missing.
What should you read if you like the Alvirah and Willy novels?
If you like reading Mary Higgins Clark’s Alvirah and Willy books, you may be interested in another series by the author, Under Suspicion.