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Fallen Angels (Mercy Alcutt) Hardcover – June 8, 2011

17 customer reviews
Book 3 of 4 in the Mercy Allcutt Series

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Product Details

  • Series: Mercy Alcutt (Book 3)
  • Hardcover: 252 pages
  • Publisher: Five Star (May 18, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594149593
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594149597
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 5.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,419,259 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

In an effort to avoid what I knew I should be doing with my life (writing'it sounded so hard), for several years I expressed my creative side by dancing and singing. I belonged to two professional international folk-dance groups. Dancing made for a lousy living, but it was certainly fun. I also sang in a Balkan women's choir. I got to sing the tenor drone, for the most part. My first book, ONE BRIGHT MORNING, was published by HarperMonogram in 1995. What's more, it won the HOLT Medallion for Best First Novel. It was a good start, but my career has been . . . rocky, is the best word for it, I guess. Publishing's a brutal business, but I've got more persistence than brains so the publishing gods haven't killed me yet, although they seem to be trying awfully darned hard, curse them. In September of 1996 my herd of wild dachshunds and I moved from Pasadena, CA, to Roswell, NM, where my mother's family settled fifty years before the aliens crashed. We love it here. No smog, no crowds, no money, but I had no money in California, either, and you don't need so much of it here.

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Detra Fitch on July 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Set in Los Angeles, the late 1920's. Mercedes "Mercy" Louise Allcutt had been born into a family of Boston Brahmins. Though Mercy need never fear of ever being poor, she wants to do more with her life than simply be a meek and proper wife to a man ... much to her blue-blooded mother's dismay. This is one reason (among many) that Mercy ended up moving to L.A. to live with her sister, Chloe, and her (Chloe's) husband, Harvey Nash, who owns and works at his own moving-picture studio. (Hmm, Mercy is absolutely correct when she states, "The English language suffers from severe pronominal deficiencies.") Considering the option of writing mysteries in her future, Mercy craves experience. Therefore, Mercy has been the secretary for a private investigator name Ernest "Ernie" Templeton during the past couple of months. Mercy has been in a wee bit of trouble (that Ernie considers out-and-out danger) once or twice, but Mercy is determined to continue earning some money on her own and learn the ways of the "real" world.

On one September morning, Ernie's best friend, Detective Phil Bigelow, shows up at the office. Ernie and Phil were to meet at nine o'clock, but Ernie never arrives. By the afternoon, Mercy is worried and heads to the home of Mrs. Persephone Chalmers, the client that has hired Ernie to find some stolen jewelry. Upon entering the Chalmers' residence, Mercy discovers Persephone's body at the foot of the stairs and Ernie, bound and gagged. When the police arrive to investigate the crime, Ernie is the prime suspect. Phil, being Ernie's close friend, is not allowed to lead the investigation. Worse, the lead is assigned to Detective O'Reilly, who would enjoy nothing more than pinning the crime on Ernie.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Donna on June 29, 2011
Format: Hardcover
If you haven't yet met Mercy Allcutt, Alice Duncan's heroine of the Angel Flight series, listen to me, you really, really DO want to meet Mercy. The spunky, but proper, daughter of blue-blood Bostonians turned loose in the speakeasies, opium dens and (gasp) barber shops of Roaring 20's Los Angeles is a true delight. I love the way Alice has turned the stereotypical dumb blonde sidekick/girlfriend of a hard-bitten detective on its head in creating Mercy. I'm wondering whether or not Alice has created a new subgenre in this hard-bitten cozy.

Oh, yes, and all you animal lovers--just wait till you meet Rosie, the miniature black poodle. And then there's streetwise, 12-year-old Barbara Ann, And did I mention Ernie Templeton AKA Sam Spade? All great characters.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Nancy C. Beck on June 29, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
The Mercy Allcut mysteries are one of the mystery series I look forward to (the other is Kate Kingsbury's Pennyfoot Hotel mysteries). In fact, both are an auto-buy for me. :-)

This is the best one yet. Mercy is furious at the beginning that her boss, Ernie (the P.I.), isn't at work, though he typically strolls in later than she thinks he should, so she goes in search of him. Seems he had a call from Mrs. Persephone Chalmers, she of the breathy voice from a prior book, claiming that some of her jewelry had been stolen. But when Mercy arrives at the Chalmers residence, she finds the wait staff nowhere to be found, Persephone dead, and Ernie bound and gagged upstairs.

Except the police don't believe Mercy when she tells them she found Ernie that way. Due to the personal hatred one of the LAPD detectives (named O'Reilly) has toward Ernie and the fact the suspect list is slim, Ernie becomes the major suspect.

Is Mercy about to let Ernie go down for the count? Of course not! Her questioning of those whom she considers suspects leads her to someone in a religious congregation that is clearly modeled on Aimee Semple McPherson and her brand of religion.

And, boy, is the ending a humdinger! As always, there is plenty of humor along the way, but also plenty of suspense - of course I didn't figure out who the murderer was until almost the end :-).

This is one of the most fun and satisfying cozy mystery series I've read. I especially like how it takes place during the 1920s (with Ms. Duncan throwing in some nice turns by the very real John Gilbert and another silent screen star, Renee Adoree), and that Mercy is so spunky and persistent.

Loved this story and can't wait to dive into the next one!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on June 9, 2011
Format: Hardcover
In Los Angeles, Boston Brahmin Mercy Allcutt works as a secretary for former police officer turned private investigator Ernest Templeton. Mercy's duties are supposed to be strictly office, but she sometimes gets involved in field work.

Currently she searches for her boss who has been hired by Persephone Chalmers to recover stolen jewelry. The secretary enters the Chalmers' residence only to find the client dead. Searching for her employer, Mercy locates him tied up and gagged. She frees him, but the cops believe Mercy is covering for Ernie who is the only murder suspect. Mercy investigates by following the money trail as Ernie always suggests; this includes donations by the victim to the Adelaide Burkhard Emmanuel School of Religion.

Readers will enjoy Mercy's latest 1920s Los Angeles mystery (see Angel's Flight) as the fascinating heroine is a sheltered courageous young female who works the investigation. Besides the deep time and place that readers will feel they are visiting inside a fun whodunit; it is the comparison between the gentle aristocratic Mercy and the kick butt street wise Ernie that makes the tale. She is cozy and he is noir.

Harriet Klausner
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