AND IF YOU CAN’T GO WEST…..  go western!  (as in, country & western) Which, by the way, was the theme of last night’s gala engagement party, hosted by Big Tex Rubenstein and his lovely bride, Janglin’ Jaime.  Their youngest son recently got engaged and is fixin’ to get hitched this October.  Gary & Jaime were kind enough to provide some VERY tasty barbecue with all the sides a buckeroo could ever want.  Needless to say, there was also plenty of tequila, and from what I remember, folks were mighty thirsty.  Which reminds me, I need to apologize for kissing Loyd Smith when he was leaving.  (Loyd is my new [unpaid] publicity & booking agent)  He is also one of my devoted blog followers, and a darn good kisser!

In addition to the great company and cuisine, guests were entertained by one of the BEST bands in the Hill Country….  Lohman’s Crossing Band, out of Austin, Texas.  If you’re ever in need of some top notch performers, then this is the group for you.  I’ve had the pleasure of listening to this band once or twice before, and they are simply marvelous.  (I’m not sure, but I think the lead singer, a lovely young lady, has a big crush on me.  She asked me to get her a cup of water during the show.)  In any case, you can reach these folks at:   http://www.facebook.com/lohmanscrossing.

And since we’re on the subject of travel, (we were?) allow me to mention a couple of odd events that recently took place… as many of you know, I spent 3 weeks last summer sailing around Sicily.  Well, no sooner do I get home, when Mount Etna starts erupting again!  Yup, the dear lady has finally blown her top.  Last week she started oozing red hot lava, and although the scientific community says this is “normal,” the local residents are very worried.  And so am I.  Why?  Because I left a good pair of sunglasses on the rim of the darn volcano.  I’m tempted to go back next week, but I think I’ll wait for the sale at LensCrafters.

So, in addition to the volcano, we spent a good deal of time on the lovely island of Gozo.  (Which is part of Malta.)  Gozo was famous for a magnificent stone arch on the western coast of the island.  (The arch was known as the “Azure Window,” because you could look through it and observe the sea.)  Well, unfortunately, there was a huge storm in Gozo a couple of weeks ago, and the dang waves much have reached about 100 feet, because the arch was knocked down!  Sadly, the island has now lost its most famous tourist attraction.  I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but I want you to understand that the collapse had nothing to do with me walking across the arch… or the picnic we had on the top.  The waves were to blame.  Really.

Well, I would love to write more, but I am on my way downtown to see the new house that my youngest daughter recently purchased in Tarrytown.  The place is currently being renovated, and I’m certain they want my design input.  (Or maybe they just want me to take everyone to lunch!)  Regardless, I must depart!

Have yourselves a lovely Sunday and a joyous week.  For all of my “Yankee” friends, be careful shoveling that wet snow!  I hate to brag, but today is sunny and warm (80 degrees) down here in lovely Austin.  Ah well, it’s a tough job living in paradise, but somebody has to do it!

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff


So, tell me, do you remember the above tune from “The Sound of Music?”  The actual title is “My Favorite Things,” and this little gem was written by the dynamic duo – Rogers & Hammerstein.  I actually saw this musical way back in 1962, four years after the show reached Broadway.  (My family lived on Long Island, 45 minutes east of Manhattan.)  The reason I mentioned this song is because a large number of my blog followers (two ladies from Malaysia) have repeatedly asked me to discuss some of my favorite “things.”  Thus, since your wish is my command, here is a partial list submitted for your consideration:

Favorite ethnic food:   Italian

Favorite adult beverage:   Bourbon  (Blanton’s)

Favorite travel destination:   Italy  (I’m starting to see a pattern!)

Favorite musician:   Jerry Jeff Walker  (Love the Stones & Beatles, too!)

Favorite author:   Elmore Leonard

Well, there you have it folks.  Some of my favorite things.  Another one of my favorite things is having my first history book, THE SECOND MOURNING, revised and re-published by Murder Ink Press, in association with Penguin Books!  This is being accomplished as we speak, complete with a new front and back book cover, displaying the five gold medals the book has won!  I am currently working on the final galley edition, and I hope to be finished by the end of March.

You might wonder why this is taking so long…  well, oddly enough, I am also working on the final rendition of my second history book, titled, TURBULENT TIMES.  (The Remarkable Life of William H. Seward)  The publisher and I have been trying to finalize permission to use a number of wonderful historic photographs, each of them “owned” by the Library of Congress or the National Archives.  Lord, do these folks move slow.  Ah well, good things come to those who wait.

Meanwhile, I try to entertain myself by engaging in philosophical pursuits…  For instance, as I was cleaning up the Garfield book, I began to wonder…  How important does a person have to be before they are considered assassinated instead of just murdered?  I mean, what’s the cutoff?  The Senate?  The House?  Who knows.  Not I. Also, how deep would the ocean be if there were no sponges?  Just curious.

Well, as you’re pondering the above, please don’t feel sorry for me.  I am in a rather joyous mood today, as my youngest daughter, Rebecca, just announced her (long-awaited) engagement to her beloved Peter.  Naturally, he asked for my blessing, and since he was able to provide a sound financial statement, I gave it to him.  (Hey, a Dad has to be careful nowadays!)  Miss Rebecca is now the proud wearer of a stunning pear-shaped diamond, which appears to be real.  (I won’t know for sure until I get the test results!)  In the meantime, we are thrilled and delighted to have Peter join the family, and I look forward to losing my last tax deduction.

You know, I was just thinking that my family is like fudge.  Mostly sweet, with a few nuts.  But enough about me!  I hope that each and every one of you has a safe and joyous week, and I look forward to chatting with you in the near future.  If you want to help me pay for the upcoming wedding, please send a check to my home address, and make sure you include plenty of zeros!  (I love those round numbers.)

Finally, this blog post is dedicated to one of the true loves of my life, Mrs. Margaret Bell.  Whenever I think of Miss Margaret I am reminded of Lord Byron’s lyrical poem, “She Walks in Beauty.”  The title fits her perfectly.

Well, be careful out there!  Love to all,

Doc Yanoffdsc00919dsc01156




Well, almost off.  I was supposed to be running in today’s 26th Annual Austin Marathon, but I overslept and missed the entire race!  I am soooo annoyed.  I hate to admit it, but this is the 26th time that I have overslept and missed the dang race!  What the heck is wrong with me?  (Not enough time to go into that!)  I was hoping to participate so that I could get in shape for my upcoming appearance on “Dancing With The Stairs.”  (A new show that offers you a chance to “get up in the world.”)  Speaking of getting up in the world, did you know that one of my brothers was an orphan?  My brother Ron was born during an elevator strike.  He had nobody to bring him up.  Very sad.

I would actually be a good dancer except for two things.  My feet.  I simply lack the muscular coordination to glide effortlessly around the dance floor.  Of course, that has not stopped me from trying.  My grand-daddy told me that I should enjoy dancing and dance as if nobody was watching… because in my case, they weren’t!

Since we are on the subject of “effortless movement,” allow me to address a number of inquiries about my last voyage to the sun-drenched Caribbean.  A rather large number of my blog followers have asked me to write more about my travels, since they love the topic or might be planning their own adventure.  Your wish is my command!  Shall we start with Turks & Caicos?  Lovely little islands, almost always warm and sunny.  Not much to do if you don’t swim, snorkel, or scuba dive.  I enjoy all three activities, and the water in this part of the world is G-R-E-A-T!  They have 2 or 3 beaches that are worth a visit, and all of the beaches are open to the public.  (You may have to rent a chair & umbrella on some beaches.)  No food worth dreaming about, but the locals are sweet and gracious, and they do have some very good rum.

The Turks & Caicos are actually a group of about 40 islands clustered together.  The Caicos are the larger islands, and the Turks the smaller ones.  Population somewhere around 33,000 (depending on Hurricanes!)  If you’re a water rat like me, you should seek out the island of Providenciales (known as Provo).  Here you will find an incredible 14-mile-long barrier reef filled with every imaginable fish, and if you’re lucky, you might find some pirate treasure!

I love this spot for several reasons, and if you want to learn more about the area, you should read my second “Adam Gold mystery,” titled, THE PIRATE PATH.  We actually handled a fascinating insurance claim in the Bahamas, so if you want to learn more, check out the book.  Most of it is true.  (Like my life!)

So what else is new?  Well, congratulations to the gorgeous owner of the COVE BOUTIQUE on Congress Avenue.  (Downtown Austin)  I understand that the lovely establishment was recently named as “the best new clothing store in Austin,” and also posted its most profitable day since opening!  Wow, quite impressive for a store that has only been open for one year.  (I wish the owner would buy me a condo in Hawaii!)  Hey, is that too much to ask of my own daughter?  I think not.

By the way, several of my astute blog followers have asked about the poker tournaments on my last voyage.  (They probably want to borrow some money)  Well, I got lucky.  Very lucky.  I won the first big tournament (with a pair of deuces!) and came in 4th in the second tournament.  The pay-out was fairly substantial, and covered most of my trip expenses.  (If you work for the IRS, please disregard this entire blog!)

In closing, I would like to thank my friends at the Broken Spoke for a most entertaining evening.  After my last beer-fest, I told myself that I was drinking too much.  Then I thought about it and realized that I was being foolish.  Why should I listen to a guy who gets drunk and talks to himself?  (Just saying.)

Finally, I would like to send some special thoughts and prayers to Mrs. Margaret Bell, a VERY dear friend and one of the most remarkable and lovely ladies I have ever met.  Get well soon, Miss Margaret.  I miss my margarita buddy!

Well, time to run.  I am spending this afternoon in deep contemplation, trying to figure out how those little insects manage to get inside a sealed light bulb.  Very puzzling.  Nevertheless, I wish you well, and hope you have a safe and pleasant week!  Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff


P.S.   The winner of last week’s trivia contest (and a $200 gift card) was Gianmario Sanguineti of Milan, Italy.  Well done, sir!





OMG, I leave the country for a couple of weeks, and the world begins to fall apart! (Or maybe just the west coast)  I just read that the groovy citizens of California are seriously considering c-section!  Oh wait, make that secession.  Either one would be foolish, and if I remember correctly, secession has been tried before.  I don’t remember the details, but I think it ended rather poorly.  In any case, I hope our confused brethren  don’t leave until my books have been optioned by Hollywood.  (Talk about national tragedies!)

Frankly, I think that some of the protest signs have been a little questionable.  One guy had a “Stop” sign, and some old hippie chick had a yellow “Yield” sign.  Man, talk about mixed messages!  My favorite signs were “Slippery When Wet” and “No U-Turn.”  (I don’t intend to touch these jokes with a “ten foot pole!”)  Besides, methinks I doth protest too much.  (See how I slip those clever literary references into my blog?)

Well, I had my first book signing at a full-fledged honky -tonk last week, and it was great fun.  Did you know that the word “tonk” used to mean piano?  So when a fellow honked the tonk, he played some music.  I thought you might find that interesting.  One old cowboy came up to me and asked if I knew the difference between a dog and a fox.  (The answer?  Nine shots of tequila!)  By the way, if you haven’t been to Giddings, you should go there.  (The folks in Giddings get a little giddy after those tequila shots!)

For those of you who have inquired about the release date of my next historical masterpiece (TURBULENT TIMES), we are looking at early May.  I recently had the pleasure (?) of reviewing 932 endnotes, which only took two weeks!  Don’t ask me why, but I wound up with over 300 books on my bibliography!   Actually, I had to do quite a bit of research for this book, as many of my “factoids” have never been presented to the public before.  When you present startling information, you must leave a paper trail for subsequent authors and researchers.  Very time-consuming, but such is life.

So what else is new?  Well, last week’s gala dinner honoring Judge Susan and the Princess of Portugal was absolutely fabulous.  (Both ladies turned 39!)  The invited guests (and a few party-crashers) dined on Chicken Patriciano, eggplant parmigiana, and assorted Italian greens.  As usual, the gluttons (me) overate, over-drank, and over-stayed their welcome.  You know, it’s not easy to over-stay your welcome when the party is at your own house, but I managed to do it!)

Incidentally, for those of you who live in the Southeastern portion of America, please mark your calendars that I will be coming to Savannah and Charleston in May to pick up my recent literary award.  (My last mystery novel, A RUN FOR THE MONEY, won a major award in January.)  I am really looking forward to returning to “the scene of the crime,” so to speak.  The book, or most of it, takes place in the South Carolina Low Country.  Get those mint juleps ready!

Finally, I would like to extend a belated birthday wish to the captain of our recent ship voyage.  (Captain Sven “Iceberg” Olson, of Oslo, Norway)  I remember asking him (last month) about our particular vessel.  I asked him how frequently smaller ships sink.  He said, “Only once.”   Well, that was certainly a reassuring answer.  (Now you know why I sleep with my life preserver on!)

In closing, I would like to congratulate my cousin Max, who recently caught (and released) a huge, 8-pound bass in Florida!  (Yes, he provided photographic evidence.)  Max used a special pole (a south pole, I believe) to catch the behemoth, and then, coincidentally, watched some pole dancing back at the lodge.  Ah, wilderness!  (Do I sound jealous?)  Don’t feel sorry for me, endnotes can be very stimulating.  (Yeah, right.)

Well, my friends, keep those cards and letters coming.  And… if you want to win a gift card… be the first to provide the correct answer to the following question:   What famous person rented a house from William H. Seward during the Civil War?

Good luck, and have a safe and happy week!  Love to all,

Doc Yanoff



dscn2035dsc01055 dsc01110


AHOY THERE, landlubbers!  Captain Kidder (yours truly) has returned from his 3-week nautical adventure on the high seas.  Actually, I never got “high,” but I did consume a fair amount of rum.  One guy on our ship drank a gallon of shellac and died, but he had a “nice finish.”  (Ouch!)  I recently returned to lovely Austin, Texas, and I’m glad to be home.  (I didn’t want to miss the end of cedar season!)  In any case, it’s great to be back, but I do miss the warm salt air and the fragrance of Coppertone suntan lotion.  By the way, my wife also loves Coppertone lotion.  (She supports the women’s lubrication movement!  Frankly, so do I, but I won’t go there right now.)

My recent sojourn began in Boca Raton, Florida, the land of silk and money.  During our voyage we covered roughly 3,000 nautical miles, but since I was on a ship, I stayed dry.  (Or was that my martini?)  Naturally, I made many new friends, sold some books, and gained a few more blog followers.  (We will probably have 50,000 followers by the end of 2017!)

As most of you know, I LOVE the Caribbean, and not just because the locals named a dish after me.  (Jerk Chicken)  This voyage started in the Turks & Caicos, but I didn’t meet any Turks or Caicos.  From there we sailed to Puerto Rico to visit my hubcaps.  After San Juan, we traveled to Tortola, which is part of the British Virgin Islands.  Not to complain, but once again I did not meet a single virgin.  After leaving Tortola, we stopped in a remote and lovely spot called Punta Cana, which is located on the eastern end of the Dominican Republic.  Punta Cana is GORGEOUS, and has soft white sand and crystal clear water.  Great diving, snorkeling, and swimming.  We were actually the very first “touristas” to ever visit by ship, and it was well worth the stop.  The Dominicans are gracious and welcoming, but don’t confuse the Dominican Republic with the island of Dominica, which is much further south.  (If you do, they will throw a coconut at your head!)

Our final port of call was Nassau, in the Bahamas, where I spent the day scouting movie locations for my second mystery novel, THE PIRATE PATH.  (More on that later)  I would like to thank our hosts at the Melia Beach Resort for a truly memorable visit.  The weather, water, and women were perfect!  (Remind me to tell you my “Coppertone story.”  Let’s just say that I rubbed a few chicks the wrong way!)

Of course, the best part of spending much of your adult life on a cruise ship is meeting other travelers, and this voyage was no exception.  In fact, I’d like to say “howdy” to a few of my new friends, which includes, Jon & Candace Hatch (our “Happy Hour” buddies) Jerry & Miriam Klein from Nashville, and Cyril & Joan Villiers from the U.K.  It was such a pleasure to wine and dine with you folks!

Well, now that I’m “back in the saddle,” I have to review the final editing revisions on my next history book, titled, TURBULENT TIMES.  (The Remarkable Life of William H. Seward)  The publisher is aiming for a May 1st release date, which would arrive just in time for the summer season.  (I can’t believe that I now have to read my own writing!  For the third time!)

In closing, I would like to thank the D.H.S. for allowing me to re-enter the country.  Apparently they did not hear about the “Coppertone incident” on St. Barts, which was our second stop.  Nor did they learn about the “topless” photographs that I took on the island of Antigua.  (Our fourth stop.)  Those dang French ladies are more modest that they appear to be… and they can run very quickly in thongs… the thongs you wear on your feet!)

I will post some (uncensored) photographs on my next blog, but don’t get your hopes up.  The topless photographs were confiscated by some pervert in Customs.  Besides, my wife only let me take pictures of the men on the beach!  (That woman is such a prude!)  Well, be well and have yourselves a safe and joyful week.  Speak to you next Sunday…..

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff





Well, I can’t complain about our recent weather.  (Almost 85 degrees on and after Christmas Day!)  Besides, as Mark Twain once said, everybody complains about the weather, but nobody does anything about it!  (Actually, Mr. Twain “borrowed” the saying from Charles D. Warner, but as I always say, “If they ain’t heard it before, then it’s original!”)  Nevertheless, I hope that all of my loyal and loving blog followers had a marvelous holiday season.  I got everything I asked for, except the poster of Marilyn Monroe.  (My wife thought, that since I love history, I wanted a poster of James Monroe!  NOT!)

Speaking of gifts….  The Third Annual Festive-Us gourmet get-together at the Austin Club was a HUGE success.  Lots of wine, but no whining.  Great food, and great conversation.  (At our end of the table!)  Many thanks to our generous hosts, Dr. Max Talbott and his lovely bride, Miss Barbara “Bon Appetite” Talbott.  This year’s table gift (for the men) was a pair of rather colorful underwear with VERY special embroidery.  (By the way, they were NOT edible.  I speak from personal experience, but cannot elaborate!)

In order to insure that none of us sober up too quickly, we will be attending the first gala shindig of the year (tomorrow night) at the villa of the Princess of Portugal and her handsome hubby, Baron Lee.  She said something about a “pot luck” dinner, which with any luck, will NOT include any pot!  (Just some dirty pans!)  I’ll be trying to score a lobster tail, or a kiss from Countess Connie, the guest of honor.  Either way, I’ll be “buttering” someone up!

Hey, speaking of sweet things (Countess Connie) I would like to direct your attention to a GREAT new book of poetry from my friend, Gina McKnight.  Gina is a terrific poet who has a wonderful new book out, titled, “Poetry from the Field.”  (The talented author is also an accomplished horse rider & trainer!)  If you want to learn more about her poems, simply go to:   gmcknight.com

And since we’re on the subject of horses…..  my new mystery novel, A RUN FOR THE MONEY, has become a best-seller in several Charleston (S.C.) bookstores.  If you love stories about the Low Country, or simply enjoy a good read, then this is the book for you.  (Yes, you can “bet on it!”)  Hey, never pass up a good pun!  (or one of mine!)

Just for the record…   A big hug and kiss to Miss Rebecca Lee Yanoff for supplying a cold bottle of Veuve Clicquot Champagne for our New Year’s Eve Dinner, which consisted of homemade…  (are you New Yorkers sitting down?) linguini with white clam sauce!  Homemade Italian bread!  Imported salami & cheese!  And, thanks to my generous brother-in-law, fresh ricotta-filled cannoli pastries!  Mama mia, my stomach is still bulging!

By the way, do you think those clams were purchased at a Shell station?  (I warned you about those puns!)

Lastly, I keep receiving mail from something called the Neptune Society.  I assume that this is a scuba diving organization, but I’m not sure.  I did not see a photo of Jacques Cousteau on the envelope, so I didn’t open it.  I’m dying to know who these folks are.  If you have any ideas, keep them to yourself, I mean, send them along!

Finally, a word of special love to my Aunt Gladys and Aunt Thelma for their lovely holiday cards.  (Did you ladies forget the checks again?)  No problem, you can take me to lunch the next time I come to Mt. Juliet, Tennessee.  Until then, a HUGE kiss and hug to both of you sweet Southern belles!  Also, a special hug & kiss to Mother Bunny (her nickname) the darling mother of Christine Nickles, one of my oldest and dearest friends.  Best wishes heading out to Pennsylvania today!

Before I close (for real this time) I would like to mention that our little blog has recently received notification that we were chosen as one of the “BEST BLOGS OF 2016” by the folks at WordPress, Inc.   Our site (which is yours and mine) was singled out for praise as being one of the most widely read blogs in America, and one of the most clever!  Just remember, folks, I could not have done it without you!  So thank you very much!  (Your check is in the mail!)

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, Happy New Year to you and yours, and we shall chat again throughout 2017!

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff





Just returned from my enchanting weekend in America’s 4th largest city, and I was duly impressed, except for the number of motorized vehicles zooming down Interstate 10.  Dang, those Houstonians really drive fast.  I was doing 50-55 miles per hour on the Interstate and folks were passing me by like I was standing still!  Would you believe that a Schwinn cut me off?  Jeez, that was embarrassing.  (Her training wheels almost hit my bumper!)  Still, we had a marvelous time, and Houston is one happening place.

My date and I stayed in a fancy hotel (The Dew Drop Inn) near the Galleria, which is one gorgeous shopping mall.  They even have an ice-skating rink in the middle of the mall!  I wonder if the rink becomes a pool during the summer?  We were in Houston to meet my new literary proteges, sign a few books, and (most importantly) attend a gala Christmas party hosted by Mr. & Mrs. Mark McCloskey.  Boy, was that a great party.  Amazing food, wonderful spirits, and a truly fascinating crowd.  Since nobody knew me (as usual) I introduced myself as Stephen King, and I took the liberty of signing a few autographs.  (and one bank draft to pay for the crystal wine glass I broke!)  Thanks, Mark & Mayvic for a memorable event!

And since we are on the subject of “memorable events,” allow me to thank the wonderful folks at the Houston Museum of Natural Science for a THRILLING afternoon with the “Mummies of Ancient Egypt,” an event that I will remember for a long, long time.  As a former archaeologist (make that, treasure hunter) I was fascinated with the incredible collection of Egyptian artifacts I stole, I mean, viewed up close and personal.  (I am sorry for my lame jokes about being in denial (in the Nile), the $10,000 Pyramid, and the Pharaoh whose socks “Sphinx.”  Still, you must admit that my riddle (what type of music did a mummy listen to?) was pretty clever.  The answer, of course, is “wrap music!”

By the way, some of you have probably heard that I’ve been contacted by Donald Trump’s transmission team.  (Yes, I got the word right.)  They want to meet me at Jiffy-Lube on Wednesday!  I’ll probably have to “grease a few palms” to get a position.  My uncle used to grease palms in Florida.  (He was a slick guy.)  Have I mentioned his “branch” of the family?  He was a mean guy, but his bark was worse than his bite.  (What’s with all the tree jokes?)

Finally, or close to it, I would like to thank my old high school buddy, Mr. Glenn Fitzgerald (Vice President of Proluxe) for sending me a VERY cool gift.  What could possibly be better than a bottle of Nolet’s Gin (the world’s best) engraved with…. the title of your last mystery novel!  Yep, I just received a bottle with the title, A RUN FOR THE MONEY, inscribed on the label!  Do I drink the contents or save the bottle for posterity?  Or puberty?  Or prosperity?  (You and I know that the Gin is living on borrowed time!)  Anyway, thank you, Glenn.  A very thoughtful gesture!

Almost lastly… I would like to extend a belated “HAPPY BIRTHDAY” to the Princess of Portugal, who recently turned 39 and looks marvelous, absolutely marvelous!  (Baron Lee is pretty darn hot, too!)  I will forward a (semi) expensive gift after Christmas.  (When the sales start)  Until then, please know that you folks are constantly in our thoughts.

In closing…. since I will be quite busy for the next week or so, please allow me to wish a very sincere MERRY CHRISTMAS and/or HAPPY HANUKKAH to all of my wonderful blog followers in America and throughout the world.  This has been another incredible year in both a literary and personal sense, and I am fully aware that I owe ALL of my success to the thousands of people who have become blog followers and supporters.  Your friendship and encouragement means the world to me, and I wish you all a HAPPY, HEALTY, AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR!





dscn1561 dsc01024DSCN2034dscn1788