Sunday, April 29, 2007

L.A. TImes Festival of Books in Pictures

Spent all Saturday on the campus of UCLA at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books. Tons of people - readers and authors alike! But no reason to tell you about it...let me show you....

No crowds yet...still about an hour from official opening time. But they're coming!

Setting up at the Mysterious Galaxy booth

Book TV

Everywhere books!

Robert Gregory Browne at his first of four signings for the day

Best T-shirt of the day

Nathan Walpow at the Mystery Bookstore booth

The Mystery Bookstore's very own Bobby McCue

The crowds begin to grow

James Ellroy at the Borders booth

Michael Connelly talking to a fan

Crowded now

The wonderful and talented Cornelia Read fresh from the Edgars

Speaking of Edgars...Edgar award winner Naomi Hirahara and I catch up (Way to go, Naomi!)

Duane Swierczynski trying to unsuccessfully get out of a picture with Sean Doolittle during our gourmet lunch

Sean Doolittle and Victor Gischler

Mary Higgins Clark (blue jacket), Carol Higgins Clark (in red), behind the Mystery Bookstore worker in the white shirt is George Pelecanos passing time with Stuart Woods.

A whole portion of the festival I only did a quick pass through...

Simon Wood

The Fonz looking for a book...that's right, Henry Winkler at the Mystery Bookstore booth

Sean Doolittle and Joanne Fluke

Laura Lippman talking with Jan Burke at Mystery Galaxy booth

Joseph Wambaugh

Megan Abbot, Jason Starr, and Theresa Schwegel

If you've never gone before, hopefully these pictures will have convinced you it's an event not to be missed.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

LAT Festival Some Preliminary Photos

From last night's party at the Mystery Bookstore in Westwood. Bobby and Linda through a FANTASTIC party. Must have been over a hundred people by final count. Here are a few pics. I should have taken more. After the party about a dozen of us went and grabbed a (too expensive) dinner: Jim Pascoe, Sean Doolittle, Jason Starr, Victor Gischler, Jan Long, Simon Wood, Stephen Blackmoore, Mark Haskell Smith, Aldo the Mystery Dawg and son, and Robert Gregory Browne.

Off to the festival...after a quick stop at the old Farmer's Market for breakfast! Enjoy the pictures....

Stephen Blackmoore and Robert Gregory Browne trying to look important

Murderati Blogmates Simon Wood and Robert Gregory Browne

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Los Angeles Times Festival of Books!

This is a big weekend here in L.A. It's the Festival of Books at the UCLA campus. An excuse for a couple hundred thousand of your closest friends to get together an celebrate the written word.

I will definitely be there, hanging out with this guy, hoping to see this guy, and this guy, and the female Brett, and her good friend...oh and this knucklehead will be there too, but if I see him first, I might be able to avoid him.

The point is there's going to be a ton of people in town for this really wonderful event. If you are in the area, I encourage you to go even if just for a few hours. It's a ton 'o fun. And you can quote me on that!

I'll be wandering around, so if you see me, stop me and say hi!

Here are some links to get you excited:

The Mystery Bookstore, which is hosting a pre-festival party Friday night (yep, I'll be there!)

A Nice Piece in the L.A. Times

Festival of Books Home Page

List of Author Attendees (which I know for a fact is not a complete list

Festival FAQ

Festival Directions

Festival Event Map (warning, this is a PDF)

Monday, April 23, 2007

The Amazing, Vanishing Brett and a Piece of Flash Fiction

In a disappearing act most famous magicians would be jealous of, I've been off the blogs for several weeks now. Blame it on several things...first, and visually the most obvious. I've been in the process of having my website, blog and myspace page redesigned and relaunch. (Very happy with the results.) Second, at least last week, I was sick - ugly sick. 102ยบ temperature sick. Here, take these antibiotics sick. Better now...mostly. And third, I've been doing a lot of behind the scenes things to prep for the release of THE CLEANER (just over 2 months from now!!)

One of those things hit today. A very nice piece in Publisher's Weekly that you can read here.

I'm not promising to be around as much as I was earlier this year, but I will try to be here a couple times a week. I'm working on rewrites to book 2, and continuing to prep for June 26th.

In the mean time, here's a story I wrote that was up last year on Flashing in the Gutters. Hope you enjoy:

Venti Latte

“The large one.”

“You mean venti?” the barista asked. She was probably just barely out of high school.

“Sure. Venti. That’s the large, right?” the man asked.

“That’s the large.”


“Can I get your name?”

The man looked around. “Why? Is there a line?”

There was no line.

“Right. Sorry. I’m a little nervous,” she said.

“This your first day?”

“No. Third.”

“You’re doing fine.”

And she was, too. Her customer service was all he could have expected.

“How much?” he asked.

She hesitated for a moment like she hadn’t understood what he was saying, then shook herself and rang up his drink.

“Three forty-five,” she said.

“Annie.” It was one of her co-workers. The red-headed kid who looked like he could use a little sun. “Just give it to him.”

“It’s okay,” the man said. "I don't mind paying."

He pulled a five dollar bill out of his pocket and handed it to the girl. Once she had given him his change, he dumped it all in the tip jar.

While the rest of her co-workers and pretty much everyone in the coffee shop watched, Annie made the made a venti latte. No one offered to help, but she seemed to have everything under control.

Somewhere in the distance, there was the faint sound of a siren.

The man waited contentedly as she finished frothing up the milk and adding it to his cup. Once she was done, she put a lid on top and slipped a safety sleeve around the base. Her hands weren’t even shaking as she handed the drink to him.

The sirens were closer now, probably only six or seven blocks away. The man took a sip of the latte, then smiled.

“This is great.”

“Thanks,” Annie said.

“You have a good day,” he told her.

“You, too.”

Except for his footsteps on the tiled floor, the coffee shop was silent. Everyone’s eyes were on him, but he acted like he didn’t notice. The only abnormal thing he did was step over the dead body of the would-be robber lying in the middle of the floor.

The unlucky bastard’s gun was still in his hand. An ancient .38 special. God only knew how much damage the kid had done with it in the past.

As the assassin opened the front door, he glanced back at the counter. Annie was still there, watching him. As he gave her a little wave, she mouthed the words, “Thank you.”

He smiled and walked out to his car. A glance at his watch told him he was still ahead of schedule. That was fine. It was never good to kill someone when you were in a rush.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


In the effort to gear up for the coming release of my novel, I've launched my new, redesigned website! Check it out HERE.

You may have already noticed the look of my blog has also changed. Thanks go to Madeira at for doing such a great job!

If you get a chance, let me know what you think!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Tasha Alexander's wonderful A POISONED SEASON is in bookstores today. I was lucky enough to read an ARC, and I have to say, it's a great followup to AND ONLY TO DECEIVE.

London's social season is in full swing, and the aristocracy can't stop whispering about a certain gentleman who claims to be the direct descendent of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. But he's not the only topic of wagging tongues. Drawing rooms, boudoirs, and ballrooms are abuzz with the latest news of an audacious cat burglar who has been making off with precious items that once belonged to the ill-fated queen.

But light gossip turns serious when the owner of one of the pilfered treasures is murdered, and the thief develops a twisted obsession with Lady Emily Ashton. It takes all of Emily's wit and perseverance to unmask her stalker and ferret out the murderer, even as a brewing scandal threatens both her reputation and her private life.

Buy it HERE.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Killer Year 2008

If you are thriller/mystery/suspense writer whose debut novel is being published in 2008, go tohttp://2008.killeryear.comto learn more about Killer Year 2008.

Killer Year began in 2007 as a group of debut thriller/suspense authors who banded together to help promote each other. In the end thirteen authors were involved. Efforts that they used in promotion included the Killer Year blog, Killer Year website, a chap book mailed to several hundred independent booksellers, organizing Killer Year panels at various conferences and bookseller events, and producing a Killer Year anthology which will be published by St. Martin's in 2008.

For their hard work, they've received major press coverage, radio interviews and feature articles as well as the sponsorship of ITW.

So get ready, because 2008 is gonna be another Killer Year.

For more details go to

Application deadline is June 15, 2007.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Help find (read: buy) a LOST DOG

Bill Cameron's debut novel LOST DOG is out now!!! I'm thrilled for him! You can purchase it here.

Peter McKrall is at a crossroads—out of work, fighting a klepto habit, and trying to figure out his next move. Life takes an unexpected turn when a search for his niece’s stuffed dog leads him to something else entirely: a bullet-riddled corpse.
Talking to reporters lands Peter on the local news, which turns out to be a dangerous spotlight. And now Darla, the troubled daughter of the victim, is reaching out to him—but can she be trusted? When a second murder takes place and evidence is planted in his trash, the cops dredge up Peter’s painful history. The only ray of sunshine in this harrowing nightmare is Ruby Jane, whose warm smile melts the winter chill.

An unwitting player in a bizarre chain of events, Peter has no idea that the deranged killer is after him—until he takes a shot at Ruby Jane.