SUMMER IN THE CITY!

Ah yes, but which city?  How about Rome?  Well, my dear paisano, that is precisely where I am heading!  Why?  Because the next “Adam Gold caper” is tentatively titled, CAPONE ISLAND.  Consequently, I am off to the lovely island of Sicily to do some research and hopefully interview some of Mr. Capone’s relatives.  I am starting to pack, but I’m having some trouble folding my bullet-proof vest.  (That dang Kevlar is so stiff.)  I just hope I don’t become a stiff.  I’m not really worried, as the book is more about Capone’s “buried treasure” in Florida than about his life of crime.  Oddly enough, my mother lives across the bay from the island where “Scarface” supposedly buried either treasure or competitors, or both.

In any case, my crew and I will be sailing on a moderately sized vessel, leaving from Rome and heading due south.  Our first stop is gorgeous Taormina, Sicily, and then we head even further south to Valletta, Malta.  (Where I will be searching for an elusive falcon!)  After a couple of days in Malta, we start our “Volcano Tour.”  I’m not sure why, but we intend to explore Mt. Aetna, the volcanic island of Volcano, and then Mt. Vesuvius.  Hopefully we will not encounter any disruptions or eruptions.  If we do, we will just have to go with the (lava) flow!

Assuming we survive the volcano convention, we are off to the islands of Trapani and Lipari, and then over to Sorrento and Capri.  This is just about my favorite part of the world, so I am looking forward to a couple of reunions and some unusual book signings.  From Capri, we take the hydrofoil or the tinfoil over to Positano, and by then I should weigh about 500 pounds.  (primarily pasta)  We intend to spend 5 days on the Amalfi Coast, unless they run out of pasta and/or wine.  Fat chance.  (Yikes, did I just use the word “fat?”)  Mama mia!

Due to the volcano visits, I will not be schlepping my laptop with me, so I might be persona non grata, I mean, persona incognito, for several weeks.  If you need to reach me, just send cash (no Euros) to the American embassy in Rome and I will call you back.  (As soon as I sober up, which might be a while.)  I love Italy, but as you can see, I should not be left unsupervised while I’m there!

Hey, do you remember the song “Travelin’ Man?”  (Ricky Nelson, 1961.)  Well, I guess that’s how I’m starting to feel.  Did you know that Ricky had a brother named David?  David was Ricky’s half-brother.  (I guess you could call him a “half-nelson.”)  That would explain why David couldn’t get a “grip” on himself.  Harriet Nelson was the mom.  Ozzie (not the one who looks and sounds like a zombie) was the dad.  Ozzie Nelson was a broadcasting genius.  In fact, they used to call him the “Wizard of Ozzie.”  (Just kidding)  All right, enough Nelson jokes.  If you want to hear my joke about Nelson Mandela, send me a postcard.

So yesterday I had the pleasure of dining at Cooper’s Old Time Barbecue Joint in Austin.  (Along with the boss, the Princess of Portugal, and Baron Lee.)  Excellent vittles, but not as good as Black’s Barbecue in Austin.  Still, Baron Lee managed to consume 10 or 12 pounds of smoked brisket, which was VERY impressive.  Would you believe that the Princess ordered a salad?  Of course, she also ordered a HUGE bowl of peach cobbler.  (And did not offer me a single bite!)  Definitely worth trying if you come to our fair city.

The newest “Adam Gold Mystery,” which is titled, A RUN FOR THE MONEY, is doing wonderful in the sales department.  According to the publisher, we’ve sold about 200 books the first week, which is pretty darn good.  If you order a book and leave a nice review on Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com, or Goodreads, please let me know and I will send you a FREE book, autographed, as a “thank you” gift.  Good reviews help obtain much-needed advertising dollars.

Finally, I want to extend a giant hug and kiss to my dear friend Judge Susan (the infamous “hanging judge” of the Texas Hill Country) who is recovering from knee surgery.  (Thank God she still has a leg to stand on!)  Her Honor is one tough cookie, and we hope she heals quickly.  Frankly, I’m tired of delivering steaks and lobster tails every night.  (Even though they’re eaten before I get to her house!)  Get well soon, your judgeship!

Well, I must run, as I’m off to my “Italian 101” language class.  Today’s class should be fun.  We will be learning the meaning of certain hand gestures, which I understand could make the difference between life and death in certain situations! I shall keep you informed of my progress with the TSA and Interpol.  Until we meet again, I remain,

Doc Yanoff   (Love to all!)

 

 

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MR. (GOOD) DEEDS GOES TO TOWN!

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.  I am proud to announce that I have joined a wonderful new charity called “Project E-Book,” a group dedicated to providing FREE e-books to members of the United States Air Force!  Consequently, all of my brilliant mystery novels will soon be FREE to currently serving members our military.  Sooo… if you have family or friends serving in the Air Force, please let them know about this modest token of appreciation.  (Hopefully, this will soon be available to ALL branches of our military.)

If you’re a writer, think about joining us in this noble endeavor.  Please remember that this small sacrifice for our heros in uniform is a small consequence when weighed against the sacrifice these folks make on a daily basis.  If you’re interested, please contact me for details about the project.  Until then, at ease blog followers!

So what else be new?  Well, we are still waiting for two famous authors to “sign off” on a back cover blurb for RANSOM ON THE RHONE.  (Yes, they actually charge for these endorsements!)  If we don’t come to terms this week, the book will be published without their glowing words of praise.  (Just between us, who cares what Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett think?  Neither one of them have written anything new in years.)

In other news…..  Mitt Romney has decided NOT to run for President.  He said it was time for fresh faces.  So that’s good news for Bruce Jenner.  Personally, I like Romney.  He reminds me of the guy who comes with the picture frame.

Harper Lee, the author of “To Kill A Mockingbird,” is publishing her second novel after a 55-year hiatus.  (She must be a slow thinker.)  Anyway, the book is tentatively titled, “Mock Two:  The Need For Speed.”  If you ask me, the title is for the birds.  What would you expect from an empty-nester?  (Did those jokes lay an egg?)  Apparently, she releases a new book every time the measles comes back.  Connect the dots and you’ll see what I mean.

Did you hear that Tom Brady, the quarterback of the Patriots, won the M.V.P. award at the Super Bowl?  He received a brand new pickup truck.  I wonder if the tires were properly inflated?  Personally, I think they should have given the truck to the guy most responsible for the Patriot’s victory.  (Seattle coach, Pete Carroll!)

Before I forget, I would like to thank the good folks at Ohio State University (department of history) for adding THE SECOND MOURNING to their suggested reading list for incoming freshman.  I hope those youngsters learn a thing or two about our wonderful country and its amazing history.  (Hope springs eternal!)

Finally, in closing, I would like to briefly address a vicious rumor floating around the Internet.  There is no truth, none whatsoever, that ANY of my mystery novels have been “ghost written” by Brian Williams!  A couple of chapters might have been penned by Dan Rather, but I forget which ones they were.  (If you find any misspelled words, that was Daniel’s fault.)

Well, my dear friends, I must be on my way…..   tonight is a special reunion dinner with some dear old chums, and the event requires that I bathe and shave and change my socks.  What can I say, ” a friend in need, should be clean indeed.”  I think the great Asian philosopher, Confusion, said that.  Please take care and have a wonderful week!

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

P.S.  Attached are a few more photographs from my river cruise in France.  (The locale of my new book, RANSOM ON THE RHONE.)

 

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YOU’VE GOT A FRIEND…

WAIT, don’t log out!  I promise not to sing a James Taylor song!  I actually enjoy his music, but that performance with Secretary Kerry was, well, a bit “off-key.”  Well, I guess it could have been worse.  Just imagine if Kerry wanted to sing the chorus.  Personally, since they were serenading the French, I think they should have picked a more appropriate song.  I was thinking of an Elvis Presley tune, his 1961 hit, SURRENDER!  Of course, the French being French, they would have undoubtedly chosen a Rolling Stone’s song.  (Let’s Spend The Night Together.)

Speaking of lame politicians, the rumors are true!  I have been asked to run for the school board!  (Fitting, since I was always bored in school.)  I told the selection committee that I was unqualified to run for public office.  (I have never been arrested, my wife won’t let me have a girlfriend, and I only accept bribes of Kentucky Bourbon.)  Furthermore, I paraphrased the words of that great statesman, William T. Sherman, and told them:  “If nominated, I will not run.  If elected, I will not serve.  If I am forced to serve, I want a big tip.”  They haven’t gotten back to me yet, so your children are still safe.

A new study has found that watching Fox News can make you more conservative and watching MSNBC can make you more liberal.  And watching CNN can make you think that no plane has ever safely reached its destination!

And since we’re on the subject of safe destinations, last night’s gala birthday dinner party at Chateau Talbott was a complete culinary and winery success!  Guests were treated (they didn’t charge this time) to a marvelous rendition of coffee-rubbed pot roast served over Alabama cheese grits.  Naturally, I regaled the entourage with some delightful tales of my misspent youth, and several of the ladies actually remained in a conscious state during my oration.

We were celebrating the joint birthdays (no, NOT that type of joint) of Judge Susan and the Queen of Board Games, Miss Jaimie.  The ladies are aging marvelously and still retain the lustre and glow of vitality, despite years of making out and dirty dancing.  They were both thrilled that the new Congress will have 104 women.  (Now you know why they call it the Washington “Mall!”)

Still freezing in most parts of the country.  I suggested that they ship hot soup in the Keystone Pipeline.  No response from the EPA.  Hey, did you see that Dallas had a 3.5 magnitude earthquake?  Some folks are blaming fracking in Oklahoma, but I think it was probably caused by Governor Christie jumping up and down after the Cowboys football victory.  Just saying.

For those of you that are sick and tired of reading those lousy books by Grisham, Patterson, and King (sounds like a dang law firm) cheer up!  I will be initialing the final publishing contracts for my new book on Monday morning!  (Tomorrow.)  Shortly thereafter, you will be able to drop everything you’re doing (which I don’t mind, unless you’re feeding a baby) and run over to the computer to order your copy of RANSOM ON THE RHONE!  Hopefully, I will attach a few photographs of my visit to the city of Lyon at the end of this blog post.  (Lyon is in the center of France, and is thought to be the culinary capital of the country.)

In closing, I would like to wish everyone a wonderful upcoming week.  Thanks to your continued support, our Sunday blog finished 2014 in the top 5% of all blog sites in the country!  This minor miracle could not have been accomplished without your loyal and loving support, so thank you very much!

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

P.S.   Photographies de France attaches.  (Photographs of France attached)

 

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BIRDS OF A FEATHER…

Get eaten together!  Well, just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water, my wife decides to forgo our usual Thanksgiving turkey and serve turducken!  What sort of person thought up this creature?  I don’t know either, but we managed to sort things out in a pilgrim sort of way.  I ate turkey, the wife and children got duck, and our guests got stuck with chicken.  (That will teach them to come empty-handed!)  I hear they are now selling a bird that is half turkey and half chicken.  It’s called a turclucken!  (I just made that up.)

In keeping with the true spirit of the season, my wife decided to have an “authentic” Thanksgiving feast this year.  I had to wear a pilgrim costume and our guests were compelled to dress as Native Americans.  Our Choctaw friends from Tupelo were amused, but I think they had certain “reservations” about wearing warpaint.  (If you recall, one of my main characters in the “Adam Gold Mysteries” is a Choctaw Indian detective named Sally Ridge.)  Sally plays a big part in THE GRACELAND GANG and again in DEVIL’S COVE.

Interestingly, our friends from Mississippi were not the only Indians at the feast.  We also invited our new neighbors, Mr. & Mrs. Sandeep Singh.  We had trouble finding their phone number, but you know what they say, “Sikh and ye shall find.”  Anyway, they were happy to join the festivities, but they kept saying “namaste” instead of “how.”  Incidentally, in case you’re wondering, turkey vindaloo is delicious.

On reflection, I suppose I shouldn’t complain about the turducken creature.  My wife’s Arkansas relatives are very poor, and every year they’re forced to serve road kill.  Fortunately, they found a good recipe, but they don’t know what to do with his bike.  (Some days you just can’t “Schwinn.”)

I just read an interesting article that stated the obvious…  most American women do not wish to engage in, how shall I put this, romantic entanglements after Thanksgiving dinner.  If you guys need some help, I’ve found that the best way to convince a woman to have sex is to compliment her.  You might say something like, “Wow, you’re a fast runner.  You almost got away.”

Hey, do you think it’s weird that I forgot my twin brother’s birthday?

I’m not really a twin.  (God forbid!)  However, I recently read an incredible article in America’s most respected newspaper, The National Enquirer.  A woman in Indiana had triplets, and then two weeks later, she had twins!  (One of the triplets got lost.)  Man, you can’t make this stuff up.  (but I do!)

In closing, I would like to thank our distinguished guests for joining us this year.  A special “thank you” to my dear old friends, Stanley and Molly Naftolin from Toronto, and to my brother-in-law, Tim McCloskey and his lovely fiancee, Miss Hannah.  It was great seeing you folks again, and please feel free to keep the silverware!  (It would be nice if you could just return the gravy bowl.)

Well, I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving, and now it’s onward and upward to Christmas and Hanukkah!  Please start your holiday shopping early, and if you have ANY questions about my size, please feel free to contact me.  (No ribald jokes, please!)  Be well and have a productive week….    Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

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THE ARCTIC GORETEX!

Those are the clothes I’m wearing, not the name of the weather front that blew in this week.  By the way, why do they call it a “front” when you freeze your “rear” off?  Hmm.  In any case, it’s cold down here in Austin, Texas!  How cold?  I just saw a chicken crossing the street with her capon. (Cape on?)  Look, there aren’t many ‘cold chicken jokes.’  (That one was really “fowl!”)  What can I say, I’m a hen-pecked guy.

Lest we forget, last Tuesday was Veterans Day.  Accordingly, I’d like to acknowledge my favorite vet, my father, Arthur Yanoff, who on October 11, 1945, flew across the Atlantic Ocean in a B-24 bomber destined for North Africa.  I would also like to acknowledge my Uncle Jim, who served in the Air Force, My Uncle Paul, who served in the Army, my Uncle Aubrey, a Marine sergeant, who fought in Korea, and my cousin Max (Talbott) a sergeant in the U.S. Army.  Thank you all for your service to our nation!

So what else is new?  Well, on Wednesday, November 12, I was featured on the highly acclaimed radio program “Be The Star You Are.”  The show was hosted by the incredibly talented Cynthia Brian, who is known as “The Oprah of the Airwaves.”  As I’ve mentioned previously, her popular program is broadcast on VoiceAmerica, which has a listening audience of 4.5 million people in 219 countries.  (I understand that only 4.2 million people listened to my brilliant oration, which was a little disappointing.  Well, that’s show biz.)

Speaking of remarkable women, I recently had the pleasure of participating in my first internet interview with the lovely and talented blogger Gina McKnight.  Gina produces a very popular blog called “Riding & Writing.”  (She loves horses and books.)  She asked some great questions, and if you would like to read my answers, simply go to:    Ginamc. blogspot.com   If you look on the right side of your computer screen, you will find the archive list and my name.  Check it out if you get a chance.  (My interview was on Sunday, October 26, 2014)

Since we’re on the subject of books (for a change) I’d like to remind you that my first mystery novel, THE GRACELAND GANG, is now available on the OFFICIAL Elvis Presley webpage.  All you need to do is find yourself a working computer and go to:  Graceland at Shop.com  (The holidays are coming up quickly, so don’t delay!)  If we sell a lot of books, I’m going to ask Elvis to sign some future copies, which should fetch a pretty penny.

Incidentally, in case you’re wondering, the fourth “Adam Gold Mystery” is in the final stages of front cover production.  The book is titled, RANSOM ON THE RHONE, and as the name suggests, the story takes place primarily in France.  The target date of release is early January, 2015, so please don’t leave the country before you purchase a copy.  (You will not be allowed back without your passport and a copy of the book.  Hey, I don’t make the rules…   (I just break them!)

In closing, I would like to remind you that Thanksgiving is just around the corner.  Please remember to purchase your turkey early.  (My wife got her turkey 35 years ago… me!)  Hopefully, you will find some photographs at the end of today’s blog.  These are photos from the gala literary event known as “Evening With The Authors.”  I hope you enjoy them!

Take care and have a wonderful week.  Love to all …..

Doc Yanoff

 

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AMAZING GRACELAND!

I ONCE WAS LOST…  But now my mystery novel, THE GRACELAND GANG, can be found!  Where?  Why, at Graceland, the home of the King, Elvis Presley!  Yes, my dear friends, I am thrilled to report that my first “Adam Gold Mystery” has been reviewed and accepted by the OFFICIAL website for all things Elvis!  You (and 300 million others) can now purchase the book at:   Graceland at Shop.com

As you might guess, this website handles the full line of Elvis products sanctioned by the Elvis Presley Estate, which is very picky about the items they allow to be sold under their own imprimatur.  After reading my brilliant novel (and taking pity on me) they decided to list my book on their website for the next few years!  Naturally, I was giddy, as this will expose my humble novel to a VAST audience in America and around the world.  (I have often thought of exposing more of myself, but the wife wouldn’t let me.)  All I can say is, “long live the King!”  (And a serious thank you to Pricilla Presley and the Presley Estate.)

So what else is new?  Hey, I don’t know about you, but I’m sick and tired of people who are too lazy to work, but then turn around and ask us for money!  But enough about the White House and Congress.  Did you remember to exercise your right to vote?  I was going to vote, but when I heard it was an exercise, I changed my mind.  I always vote for myself anyway.  During the last election, I received 3 votes.  I voted for myself, and my mother voted for me twice.  (She lives in Chicago.)  I’m not great in math, but by my calculation, it’s going to take a while to win a seat.  (Which is why I like to stand.)

Speaking of math, I have come to the conclusion that there are 3 different types of people in the world.  People who are good in math, and those that are not.  I could be wrong, but that’s the way it adds up to me.  Like I said, math is not my strong suit.  Back in high school, I would bring a rabbit to class whenever we had a math test.  (I heard they multiplied quickly)  When I got to college, I brought a Playboy bunny with me.  I didn’t do any better on the test, but frankly, I didn’t give a damn.

Just a final (thank God) reminder that I will be featured on VoiceAmerica radio this coming Wednesday evening.  (6:15 p.m. Central Time)  I will be interviewed by Cynthia Brian, who is known in the radio world as “The Oprah of the Airwaves.”  If you get a chance, give a listen.  Hopefully, Ms. Brian will offer me a car at the end of the program.

Tomorrow (Monday) I have the honor of attending a military funeral for the late Richard Bomblatus, who served his country with distinction.  Mr. Bomblatus will be buried at the Central Texas Veteran’s Cemetery, near Fort Hood.  Like all our wonderful vets, he deserves a huge thank you for his service.

Last Sunday, I had the pleasure of attending a little surprise party for Miss Joyce, the lovely mother of Jaime Rubenstein, and the mother-in-law of Gary Rubenstein.  I’m glad I brought an expensive gift, because Gary managed to convince the Captain and crew of the Queen Elizabeth Cruise Ship to feature my non-fiction book, THE SECOND MOURNING!  Don’t ask me how he did it, but the book was literally in every nook and cranny of the ship!  (I know, there are a lot of books on the Nook.  Ha-ha.)  I am seriously considering firing my present publicist (Blind Bernie Kivowitz) and hiring Gary.  (The guy is a marketing genius!)

Well, it’s time for me to consume some “health food waffles” that you-know-who is insisting I try.  This recipe has two cups of bran and some other nasty looking fiber!  One portion of these waffles, and you’ll be forced to “run” for office!  By the way, remind me to tell you how the Chinese pronounce Election Day.

Happy trials, I mean, trails!  Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

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STARRY STARRY NIGHT!

Last evening, my new book, THE SECOND MOURNING, received the equivalent of a 5-STAR review from Kirkus Book Reviews!  (One of the most prominent book reviewers in the country!)  They began by referring to the story of President Garfield’s assassination as “a fascinating narrative that covers new ground.”  After a thorough analysis of the entire book, they concluded with another great compliment…..  one that I might add to the back cover…..   “[Yanoff’s book] is an immensely readable narrative that portrays the mood and tumultuous events of the day.”

What can I say?  I am humbled and delighted, and this is bound to increase our sales, which are starting to head toward the “best-seller” designation.  Thank you, Kirkus, for the great review!  (By the way, if you would like to read the entire review, just go to Kirkus Reviews and look up the title of the book or my name.)

Speaking of “Starry Starry Nights,” did you know that I once insured Vincent Van Gogh’s masterpiece?  They were having a special show at the New York Museum of Modern Art, and the curator was looking for some extra insurance coverage.  Back then, the painting was estimated to be worth well over $100 million dollars, but by today’s standards, it is truly priceless.

I was very “moved” by the painting.  So was Van Gogh.  Of course, he was sort of a “moving Van.”  The question is, where did Van Gogh?  (Off the deep end.)  What can I say, the man was talented, but “ear-rational.”  (All right, no more ear jokes!)

But since we’re on the subject of humor…..  Here is Part 2 of “Kids Say The Darndest Things.”  These comments were recorded at (I hope you’re sitting down) Harvard University!  A sophomore summer school class was discussing the recent civil unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, and the students had this to say…..

1.  The young man who got killed was severely wounded.  (Undoubtedly.)

2.  I heard that the victim was shot six times.  My friend said it was more like half a dozen times.  (Tough call.)

3.  The percolator should be severely penalized.  (Uh-oh, there’s trouble brewing.)

4.  The case will go to the Grand Jury, and they will decide whether to entice or equip the police officer.  (They might do both.)

And my personal favorite…..

5.  The National Guard was called out to enforce a no-fly zone in the neighborhood.  (Well, some of the protestors did seem high.)

Incidentally, since we’re on the subject of “lofty events,” did you read the newspaper story about the family court judge who issued an eviction notice to her own daughter?  No joke.  The judge’s daughter is VERY pregnant, and in order to “push things along,” the sweet baby, resting comfortably in the womb, was issued (in absentia) an eviction notice!!  There was no mention of the baby girl’s reaction, but I would be willing to bet that she will be kicking and screaming when she makes her grand entrance!

Well, it is time for me to make my not-so-grand exit.  (Pancakes on the griddle!)  Before I leave, I would like to mention that today’s blog is dedicated to a delightful gentleman named Marvin Rubenstein.  Mr. Rubenstein recently passed away, but he gave the world 96 years of joy and laughter.  He will be missed by many.

I hope you all have a wonderful week.  Be safe and keep smiling… love to all.

Doc Yanoff