TARNISHED ANGEL by Phyllis Leonard


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The cheerful splatter-gun adventures of young Lily Randall, the singing sensation of San Francisco in the 1850s--she's pursued by three suitors, becomes a murder target, is shanghaied twice and sentenced to be hung, escapes from durance vile in China, and generally keeps busy until True Love triumphs. At the start, burdened with the care of her senile father, Lily skimps along in San Francisco. . . till she's rescued from a brothel (to which she's been dragged) by Harry Marshall, owner of the Golden Bonanza saloon. Lily, ""The Songbird of the Pacific,"" now becomes the toast of the town, is courted by neat nouveauwealthy Ben Gray (who turns out to be a crumb), disdains the virile advances of clipper captain Jake Thorne, and learns about vodka and balalaika fingering from Russian toff Nikolai Alexandrovski. Meanwhile, back at the Bonanza, girls (mistaken for Lily) are being horribly cut up--and then enter the darkest of villains, Wolf Trumbull, who does nasty things to Lily on his ship aptly named the Barracuda. She escapes, but Wolf will nab her again in China while he's double-crossing Jake. And in Canton Lily runs into (yep) Nikolai and a giant Chinese assassin (her pal), so she escapes, only to be captured in Mexico and sentenced to hang by Ben. . . . Finally, however, Lily is rocking in a rowboat in San Francisco harbor while True Love Jake is doing in Wolf on the mizzenmast. Likable ring-a-ding foolishness for the totally vacant hour.

Pub Date: March 11th, 1980
Publisher: Coward, McCann & Geoghegan