cover image Alibi for an Actress

Alibi for an Actress

Gillian B. Farrell. Pocket Books, $19 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-671-75707-6

The author, formerly an actress and a detective, here makes a delightful debut, calling on both those milieus. Aspiring actress Annie McGrogan moves from Hollywood to New York after her divorce, but the Big Apple doesn't offer the jobs Annie had hoped for. Having read an article about ex-cop and detective Duke DeNobili, she presses for a job as one of his operatives. Although doubtful about her qualifications, Duke hires Annie as a nighttime guard for soap opera actress Lucinda Merrill. When Lucinda's estranged husband is murdered, a witness claims to have seen the star fleeing the scene. Annie, who stayed in Lucinda's apartment the night of the murder, swears the woman didn't leave. As she juggles auditions, an acting class with Geraldine Page, serving subpoenas for Duke, and her unofficial investigation of the murder, the enchanting Annie struggles with the dichotomy between reality and sham. As depicted by Farrell, the stage world and the real world both ring true. Game and thoughtful Annie is a fresh and welcome addition to the burgeoning cast of fictional female detectives. (July)