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McNally's Secret (Archy McNally, #1)
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McNally's Secret (Archy McNally #1)

3.79  ·  Rating Details ·  2,717 Ratings  ·  145 Reviews
Sex, lies, blackmail. Archy McNally is a freewheeling playboy who specializes in "Discreet Inquiries" for the rich and not-so-discreet. Beneath the glaring sun of Palm Beach - and behind the lowest crimes of high society - he is paid to keep family skeletons in the closet. But when it comes to sex and scandal, he has a few secrets of his own.
Paperback, 352 pages
Published January 1st 1993 by Berkley (first published 1992)
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Robin Donovan
Jan 12, 2014 Robin Donovan rated it it was amazing
Sanders' character Archie McNally is nothing short of brilliant. He's an affluent living, intelligent, capable underachiever - and he's fine with that. He didn't make it through law school to make his stuffy old law firm dad happy, but he manages to solve some tricky problems that Dad's clients seem to get themselves into regularly. He can't afford luxurious digs - so he lives with Mom and Dad - how else would a guy with his resources be able to live right on the water and have servants at his ...more
Jan 12, 2014 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Archie McNally is a 37 year old, single guy that lives in the attic of his parents' house. He does investigation work for his lawyer-father. In the first of this series, he is investigating the disappearance of some very valuable stamps for one of his father's very wealthy clients.

I loved the smart, irreverent humor, the surprise ending and Archie's respectful and loving relationship with his parents. I will definitely be reading more about Archie and family.
Greer Andjanetta
Sep 14, 2013 Greer Andjanetta rated it really liked it
The 'Archie McNally' stories by Lawrence Sanders are all essentially the same, small mysteries, sometimes murders, taking place in Palm Beach, Florida. Each book features descriptions of AM's food, clothing, girlfriends and lifestyle and while repetitive after two or more books, all stories make good, light, entertaining reading. The plots are virtually indistinguishable but Sanders' excellent writing style, above-average vocabulary and non-reliance on profanity and foul language to give his ...more
Julie Fruchtman
Jan 22, 2010 Julie Fruchtman rated it it was amazing
I find that all of the McNally books are perfect "palette cleansers".
Any time that I finish heavy reading, I pick up one of the McNally mysteries and they never fail to amuse and ground me.
May 04, 2013 Helen rated it really liked it
Haven't read any of this author's work before but boy did it sound familiar. It was McNally's first name that gave it away: Archie. I grew up reading Rex Stout and McNally is an incarnation of Archie Goodwin, complete with smart cracks and multi females. We're fifty years on so the plots can involve a number of problems which would have been only hinted at in those earlier stories; homosexuality can say its name and sex can act in front of the curtain but the language in this remains decent and ...more
An Odd1
Jun 14, 2013 An Odd1 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery, fan
He lives at home, in a separate garage apartment, shares cocktail hour with mater and pater, tries to be faithful but falls for buxom beauties, enjoys the specialties at his local yacht club/ bar. His fashion sense would match a striped lime green beret to cherry red polkadot tie over lilac checkered golf knickers. The finest cognac, aromatic cheroot, and onion bedecked burger. I read the series more for his eccentricities and hot Florida sun than adulterous greedy socialite soap opera leading ...more
Apr 12, 2015 Sharyn rated it really liked it
I can't believe I never read this series! Assigned for book club, will be fun to discuss. Ok, so I lived in Palm, Beach for a summer, and West Palm for awhile and my mother lived in Delray beach, so it was fun knowing many of the places. Archie is just a riot, and I love that he uses Yiddishisms, which is funny in WASP Palm Beach. I also own a Miata, but silver. This is just a fun romp, and I will read at least the next 3. The mystery was almost incidental to the story, which is more character ...more
Jul 26, 2016 Linda rated it liked it
Shelves: audio-only
The mystery and the story were fine.

But I was completely distracted by the fact that while it was set in 1990's Florida, everyone spoke as if they lived in the 1930's. Referring to a woman as a "cupcake" and a man as "lad". Discussion of old maids or spinsters. A reference to Gibson Girls. The formal dialogue between father and adult son.

I kept being convinced it was set in the 30s after all, and then I'd remember the references to the Mazda Miata or a cellular phone.

Oh well. It was an entert
Sanders, Lawrence - 1st in series

From Fantastic Fiction: Although he doesn't usually handle burglaries, playboy/sleuth Archy McNally agrees to handle a "discrete" case for a society matron. And his search for stolen property leads Archy into a maze of sex, lies, and blackmail, uncovering a secret that's much too close to home

Funny, very enjoyable. Love the character's relationship with his parents. Light fun.
Jul 26, 2016 Pamela rated it liked it
This series is enjoyable enough. Nothing spectacular, but having a foppish, egotistical, self styled ladies' man as the main character is something different. Sanders manages to pull it off and, try as you might not to, you wind up liking Archie.

One thing irritated me to no end, though. One of the main characters is Cynthia Horowitz, one of whose husbands was awarded a title. There are a few times when Sanders refers to her correctly as Lady Horowitz. No problem there. BUT! When he calls her Lad
Aug 21, 2015 Beverly rated it liked it
Charmer. This series seems delightfully old-fashioned without being artificially historical. Archy McNally is a PI for his father's white shoe law firm in Palm Beach. He is a natty man about town, maybe a little silly, the type that is easily underestimated. Something like Peter Whimsy now that I think about it. In this first of the series Archy investigates a missing block of misprinted stamps that disappeared from the palatial home of the law firm's rich client, Lady Cynthia Horowitz. A ...more
Tom Nailor
Mar 01, 2014 Tom Nailor rated it really liked it
Is it high literature? No. Is it Sherlock Holmes or Miss Marple? No. Is it a fun romp and a good mystery? Of course. Ala a playboy Adrian Monk or a wealthy Shawn Spencer, Archy McNally is a ton of fun as narrator and protagonist. This one has some good intrigue and is classic McNally--with the usual flirtations, foodie fun, and fashionable finery. Recommended if you like fun mysteries, if you like to laugh with the rich and not so fabulous, or if you want a beach read to be enjoyed in any ...more
Kevin Sterling
Sep 18, 2013 Kevin Sterling rated it it was amazing
I've read all of the McNally novels by Lawrence Sanders and Vincent Lardo. As one might imagine, Lawrence Sanders' original books are the best, and this one is no exception. They all reflect exactly what I hope to achieve in my own books - sheer entertainment and fun. Every one of them deserves five stars.
Bill Donhiser
May 03, 2014 Bill Donhiser rated it really liked it
A fun short novel. This tongue in cheek series is fun light reading. Stolen Stamps, spoiled rich people, murder, and money. I read or listened to several of this series many years ago and thought it might be fun to go through them one more time
Apr 22, 2009 Nancy rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
An entertaining mystery with the requisite surprises. To be honest I think I gave it 3 stars rather than 4 because it was hard for me to like the playboy detective. If you enjoy a little glitz in your mysteries, this is a good one for you.
Mar 07, 2013 Bill rated it it was amazing
This book will crack you up, and while you’re laughing, you’ll be treated to a little sex, some secret romance, a murder or two, and enough suspense to fill your pint glass again and again. If you want a good laugh, some romance, and a great mystery, grab this baby!
May 28, 2012 Elizabeth rated it really liked it
I really enjoy Archibald McNally. He is a fun character to follow. And Saunders' devotion to always including a description of whatever food is being consumed is a charming addition to these quick mystery novels.
Nov 13, 2009 Shishir rated it it was amazing
Shelves: witty
Archy McNally rocks! I love the way this series has been written - the wit is super and the language pretty darn good.
Bruce Thomas
Oct 30, 2016 Bruce Thomas rated it really liked it
Inverted Jennies are stolen and Archy is given the job by his dad to find out what happened. Crime in the upper class of Palm Beach.
Michelle Ahrens
Dec 04, 2016 Michelle Ahrens rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read these books awhile ago. Nice surprise, Nathan Lane was the narrator of this book. Great books for light, quick read with some laughs.
Aug 12, 2012 rabbitprincess rated it liked it
Recommends it for: those who like light, silly mysteries
Palm Beach denizen Archy McNally is the "son" of McNally and Son, Attorney-at-Law -- his father, Prescott, is the actual attorney at the head of the firm. Archy is the head and sole employee of the Discreet Inquiries department, which specializes in investigating cases that require a little more delicacy than a typical police investigation. In this first installment, Archy is tasked with investigating the disappearance of a block of four "Inverted Jenny" stamps from the home of one of the firm's ...more
Jul 27, 2014 HBalikov rated it really liked it
Let's go back about a quarter of a century to THAT Palm Beach, Florida -- The one that Donald Trump was so anxious to be accepted into. Then, there was still a lot of the old money around and the need to fit in to a society that recently rich could only aspire to. This is where McNally & Son have chosen to serve their clientele. Father McNally is head of a local law firm and the son, Archy, a Yale failure, is responsible for the firm's discreet inquiries.

Educated at the proper Ivy League sch
Karen B.
Feb 23, 2015 Karen B. rated it it was amazing
I was hesitant at first to read this book because I figured McNally would be a hard boiled detective but was pleasantly surprised by the book. I bought the whispersync narration and initially was listening to part of the book before falling asleep. About 30% of the way through I decided to read and listen at the same time so that I could keep the various characters and their actions straight.
Archie carries cards that say "McNally Attorney at Law" but explains that he is not the attorney who is a
Apr 01, 2013 Rhonda rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

This was a good mystery it kept me guessing. I really did not connect with any of the characters. Thats probably just me. Every character has good faults but mostly bad qualities stuck out for me. This is a clean read.

Archy works for his father a lawyer in Florida. He is sent into find out about a clients missing US. Stamps that had been stolen.
Her safe was not locked. Lady Cynthia Horowitz has been married six times and the stamps were part of a divorce settlement. A simalar set sold for
Jun 01, 2013 Julie rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley, e-book
I received this book from Open Road Media and Netgalley. This is a re-issue of the first McNally mystery by Lawrence Sanders in digital format.
I have read Lawrence Sanders before, but never the McNally series.
Archy McNally, womanizer, detective in his father's law firm, and still living at home, lives the good life in Palm Beach, Florida.
When his father assigns him the job of finding out who stole a set of collectable stamps from the infamous Lady Horiwitz, McNally uncovers a clever scheme. In
Mar 11, 2016 Anna_schtr rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
First book in the series and introducing Archy McNally, a tribute to Rex Stout’s Archie Goodwin. Archy, a Palm Beach playboy of undeniable charm, has similar irreverent voice and critical detachment from his surrounding but attempts to take upon the role of a Great Detective as well. The first part works, the second one not so well. The plot itself is a bit thin, and sometimes I wished there were a bit less of sandwiches and bit more of an action. Forgoing a tight mystery plot however, is a ...more
Sep 09, 2016 Susan rated it liked it
I have read many books in this series but then let the series go for a while as I was never sure if I liked the main character/narrator Archie McNally (and actually grew to dislike him over the course of the series).

This one is a re-read of the first of the series but far enough away from my first read that, while some of the plot points seemed familiar I could not remember 'who dunnit'. In this second reading, I am still not sure if I like Archie. I am not sure yet if I will re-read the next on
May 24, 2016 John added it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rahul Kulhalli
Sep 04, 2016 Rahul Kulhalli rated it really liked it
Archibald McNally has probably become my favorite fictional character. His playboy charm, his '800 watt' smile, and the meticulous ways in which Sanders describes his daily life; it makes one want to be best friends with Archie. Definite must-read for all Sanders' fans!

McNally marathon, engage!
Sharon Storm
Nov 15, 2015 Sharon Storm rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Just read McNally's Secret again, and enjoyed it just as much as the first time. The humor keeps the story moving, and keeps it light. In the hands of a less-skilled writer, Archie McNally, a ladies man who works as an investigator for his father's law firm and lives in his parents' house, would be crude or juvenile. Archie and the other characters are well-developed, thanks to Sanders' skills. If you're looking for serious fare, this is not the book, or series, for you. Very fun read, in my ...more
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McNally's Secret 2 17 Mar 22, 2013 04:08PM  
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There is more than one author with this name

Lawrence Sanders was the New York Times bestselling author of more than forty mystery and suspense novels. The Anderson Tapes, completed when he was fifty years old, received an Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America for best first novel. His prodigious oeuvre encompasses the Edward X. Delaney, Archy McNally, and Timothy Cone series, along with
More about Lawrence Sanders...

Other Books in the Series

Archy McNally (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • McNally's Luck (Archy McNally, #2)
  • McNally's Risk (Archy McNally, #3)
  • McNally's Caper (Archy McNally, #4)
  • McNally's Trial (Archy McNally, #5)
  • McNally's Puzzle (Archy McNally, #6)
  • McNally's Gamble (Archy McNally, #7)
  • McNally's Dilemma (Archy McNally, #8)
  • McNally's Folly (Archy McNally, #9)
  • McNally's Chance (Archy McNally, #10)
  • McNally's Alibi (Archy McNally, #11)

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