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"Don't believe anything they say."
Those were the last words that Annie spoke to Alice before turning her back on their family and vanishing without a trace. Alice spent four years waiting and wondering when the impossibly glamorous sister she idolized would return to her--and what their Hollywood-insider parents had done to drive her away.
When Annie does turn up, the blond, broken stranger lying in a coma has no answers for her. But Alice isn't a kid anymore, and this time she won't let anything stand between her and the truth, no matter how ugly. The search for those who beat Annie and left her for dead leads Alice into a treacherous world of tough-talking private eyes, psychopathic movie stars, and troubled starlets--and onto the trail of a young runaway who is the sole witness to an unspeakable crime. What this girl knows could shut down a criminal syndicate and put Annie's attacker behind bars--if Alice can find her first. And she isn't the only one looking?
Evoking classic film noir, debut novelist Mary McCoy brings the dangerous glamour of Hollywood's Golden Age to life, where the most decadent parties can be the deadliest, and no drive into the sunset can erase the crimes of past.
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Mary McCoy is the Senior Librarian in Teen'Scape, the young adult department at the Los Angeles Public Library. She's also worked as a hot dog vendor, a hotel maid, a bass player, a fundraiser for public television, and a contributor to On Bunker Hill and the 1947project, where she wrote stories about Los Angeles's notorious past. Mary grew up in western Pennsylvania and holds degrees from Rhodes College and the University of Wisconsin. She currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband.
A privileged girl turns detective in a gritty noir thriller about the not-so-glamorous side of Hollywood in the 1940s. Alice Gates has always lived a comfortable life in her spacious Hollywood home. Her father does PR for a prestigious studio, and Alice and her sister, Annie, have spent their childhood hobnobbing with famous movie stars and attending glitzy parties. Suddenly, when Alice is 12, Annie leaves home with no explanation. Four years later, Alice receives a call that her sister is in the hospital, beaten and unconscious. As Alice tries to track down Annie's assailant, she finds herself in the thick of a Tinseltown that isn't quite so shiny, one full of runaways, pornographers, malicious gangsters, crooked cops and psychotic movie stars. As she begins to pick her way through the tangled web, she learns that the present-day events may ultimately lead back to the truth about her sister's leaving home all those years ago. McCoy's mystery unfolds slowly and cautiously, offering enough clues-and red herrings-to keep readers hooked. Its conclusion is tidily, perhaps a bit too conveniently, resolved, but against the richly envisioned backdrop of golden-age Hollywood's sinister underbelly, this minor quibble is easily forgiven. Step aside, Nancy Drew; this dark mystery holds nothing back. (Historical mystery. 13 & up) Kirkus"
Gr 9 Up Sixteen-year-old Alice imagines herself to be as good a private eye as Sam Spade or Philip Marlowe from the 1940s film noir classics. Like the Maltese Falcon and other detective films, Alice is surrounded by flawed and compromised characters, including her parents, the LAPD, and other young people involved in crime. The book opens with Alice finding her estranged sister, Annie, in a coma. She makes it her business to find the perpetrators of this crime, delving into Annie's dark past and her association with Conrad Donoghue, a devastingly handsome leading man with secrets of his own. Alice is helped and hindered by corrupt police, undercover agents, witnesses, and friends of Annie. Readers may have difficulty remembering so many characters without a scorecard. Plot twists and turns that might have made sense in a film are harder to follow in this medium. Even after solving the crime, everyone connected to this story emerges tarnished, including Alice. For fans of melodrama and mystery. Lillian Hecker, Town of Pelham Public Library, NY SLJ"
McCoy debuts with a gritty, noir-style thriller about the Gates sisters, two teenagers coming of age in Los Angeles during Hollywood's Golden Age. After four years apart, 16-year-old Alice finds her older sister, Annie, in a hospital bed after being beaten close to death. With the help of a private investigator, Alice works to untangle the events leading up to her sister's attack, plunging into a seamy world of dangerous movie stars and the henchmen who will do anything to please them. Although McCoy keeps noir archetypes alive and well, from dirty cops engaged in cover-ups to ink-stained reporters hungry for their next scoop, she develops her characters well beyond facsimiles of black-and-white Rita Hayworth esque figures on darkened street corners. Far from damsels in distress, McCoy's heroines are fierce crusaders for justice despite their own fears or the dangers they face in protecting each other. The examination of the glamorous face of fame and what lurks behind the scenes is rife with twists to keep Alice and readers guessing. Ages 12 up. PW"
McCoy debuts with a tale of murder and mayhem in post-World War II Hollywood. Alice Gates, daughter of Tinseltown insider wannabes, was 12 when her 16-year-old sister Annie ran away from home. Four years later, Annie reappears, comatose in the hospital with Alice as the only contact. Alice is determined to find out who beat her sister into a coma. Her search involves an assortment of friends and foes, including a hard-boiled private eye, Alice's dysfunctional parents, her loyal and enduring best friend, and a ruthless movie star. Alice is bright, brave, and plucky in her pursuit of answers, sometimes at her own peril. The nourish narrative reveals the grit and squalor beneath Hollywood's glitter, and the ultimate revelation literally hits Alice where she lives, forcing her to learn that there is no such thing as a perfect ending and she must accept what she gets. While the plethora of breathtaking twists and turns and colorful characters may strain credulity at times, the novel is true to the genre, and readers will enjoy the ride. Donna Scanlon Booklist"
Alice never fully knew the reason her older sister, Annie, left home as a teenager and dropped off the map. Now Annie lies comatose in the hospital, brutally beaten and left for dead, and sixteen-year-old Alice is the only family member who knows where she is. A friend of Annie, private detective Jerry Shaffer, turns up, but he is reluctant to allow Alice to assist him in finding Annie's attackers. Of course there's no putting Alice off. She and her sister used to pass the time playing with ciphers, pretending they were World War II spies, and Alice knows how to crack the clues her sister sparingly left behind. They all lead straight to trouble: her sister, her father, and now she herself have been pulled into a web of crimes surrounding a movie idol and his penchant for underage girls. Noir homage can reasonably be considered its own subgenre in youth fiction, and McCoy's debut novel suggests she will run at the head of the authorial pack. She paints a convincing picture of the seamy side of 1948 Hollywood, where tangled alliances among studio honchos, corrupt cops, and screen glitterati conspire to keep the stars' sins tucked well into the shadows. Alice is as hardboiled as the fictional detectives she admires, and her gritty, cynical voice is no comic parody but that of a smart teen who has just dis- covered her parents are more venal than she thought. There are enough twists and turns, feints and deceits to rival The Big Sleep for inscrutability, but Alice's descent into the underworld of murder, child pornography, and statutory rape will keep readers in thrall. EB BCCB"
3Q 2P J S Alice's sister Annie has been missing for four years before she turns up beaten and unconscious in a Hollywood hospital. Alice knows that something is amiss and decides it is up to her and her amateur detective skills to figure out what landed Annie in the hospital. At the hospital, Alice meets a detective who says he is helping Annie, but Alice is not sure if he is trustworthy. Setting these worries aside, Alice uses the detective and her own sleuthing skills to search into Annie's past and present. The more she digs, the more she finds that all in glamorous, movie-star Hollywood-land is not what it seems; her parents, movie stars, cops, and talent agents all have secrets to hide. Over the course of a few short days, Alice has run-ins with Hollywood gangsters, dirty cops, double-crossing informants, and movie stars who might be murderers-all while she is searching for a teen runaway whom her sister was trying to protect. Dead to Me is described as a film noir book and this description is fitting. For adults, it will bring to mind the Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle scandal, but teens without knowledge of Hollywood lore will think of this as a Boardwalk Empire meets Sopranos-esque tale.-Charla Hollingsworth. VOYA"
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Book Description Disney-Hyperion. Hardcover. Condition: New. 304 pages. Dont believe anything they say. Those were the last words that Annie spoke to Alice before turning her back on their family and vanishing without a trace. Alice spent four years waiting and wondering when the impossibly glamorous sister she idolized would return to her--and what their Hollywood-insider parents had done to drive her away. When Annie does turn up, the blond, broken stranger lying in a coma has no answers for her. But Alice isnt a kid anymore, and this time she wont let anything stand between her and the truth, no matter how ugly. The search for those who beat Annie and left her for dead leads Alice into a treacherous world of tough-talking private eyes, psychopathic movie stars, and troubled starlets--and onto the trail of a young runaway who is the sole witness to an unspeakable crime. What this girl knows could shut down a criminal syndicate and put Annies attacker behind bars--if Alice can find her first. And she isnt the only one looking Evoking classic film noir, debut novelist Mary McCoy brings the dangerous glamour of Hollywoods Golden Age to life, where the most decadent parties can be the deadliest, and no drive into the sunset can erase the crimes of past. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Hardcover. Seller Inventory # 9781423187127
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