HOT TOWN, SUMMER IN THE CITY.  BACK OF MY NECK GETTING DIRTY AND GRITTY…..  Hey, I remember that song!  It wasn’t written about Austin, Texas, but it could have been.  Actually, it was about New York City, penned by John Sebastian and recorded by the Lovin’ Spoonful in 1966.  (I hate to admit it, but I graduated from high school in 1967!)  So how hot is it down here in the Lone Star State?

The Jehovah Witnesses have started telemarketing!

Congress has installed a fan in the debt ceiling!

I caught a FRIED catfish in Lake Travis!  (Now that’s hot!)

Speaking of Lake Travis, my semi-brilliant mystery, DEVIL’S COVE, has recently been named as one of the Top Ten Mysteries of the Year by the Albany (N.Y.) Times Union newspaper.  There was no cash award (darn it!) but it’s still a wonderful honor and one that is greatly appreciated.  The book is now on its third printing, so if you haven’t been able to obtain a copy, now’s your chance.  He who hesitates is lost!

Incidentally, I would like to thank Ms. Emily Garrison for all of her hard work in reference to typing and blocking mystery number four, RANSOM ON THE RHONE.  The next “Adam Gold Mystery” will be published sometime in the fall, and this one takes place mostly in France.  (Hence the title)  The book was originally titled “Life On The Mississippi,” but the publisher thought it was a little long and a somewhat confusing.  (What do they know?)

And since we’re on the subject of publishing, I recently read some interesting things in our local newspaper…..     The finals of the World Cup (Germany vs. Argentina) might attract the largest television audience in history!  I’ve never seen any of the World Cups, but I did meet Dolly Parton when I went to Pigeon Forge.  (This would be a visual joke!) …..   Our current immigration crisis means no more Olympic teams from Central America.  (All of their citizens who can run, jump, and swim are coming to America!) …..  The Republicans have chosen Cleveland as the site of their next national convention.  The Democrats are looking at Baghdad, Gaza City, and Chicago.  (The first two are getting the most votes!)

Last night was “Pool Party Number 200,” and a great time was had by all.  We dined on grilled mahi-mahi, shrimp, fresh salads, and sushi.  Our creative host (Me) prepared a large batch of homemade sangria, and lo and behold, every drop was consumed by our prestigious (and thirsty) guests.  Nude bathing was kept to a “bare minimum,” but that’s the last time I send out invitations with a “clothing optional” message.  (Don’t ask where I dropped a hot shrimp.  And NO jokes about shrimps of any kind!)


Well, my dear friends, I must leave thee now.  Time to head for a late breakfast and some homemade biscuits.  (I would like to thank Miss Rebecca Yanoff for supplying the Colorado honey and Chokecherry Jelly .  (The actual name!)  I can’t wait to gouge myself, I mean, gorge myself with these goodies.  In the meantime, you folks take good care of yourselves, don’t worry about me over-eating, and have a great week!

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff





I am happy to report that the infamous pirate/punster (Captain Kidder) and his female accomplice and first mate (Poker Patty) have returned to port…  (we found a bottle in our luggage!)  After we consume the port, our intention is to unpack, which might take some doing after logging 3,545 miles on our recent book tour/family visitation/Caribbean voyage.  Nonetheless, somebody has to do it, so it mighty as well be Patty.  (I only handle booty….  no jokes, please!)

All in all, it was a remarkable venture, which began in Austin and continued east, with stops in Delray Beach, Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale, Eleuthera (Bahamas), Jamaica, Cayman Island, Cozumel (Mexico), and then up through the Florida Straights to Miami.  Whew, what a trip!  Too much food and drink, but just the right amount of Texas Hold ‘Em Poker.  (We won enough loot to fill a small treasure chest, or Dolly Parton’s bra.)  Incredibly, the seas were almost flat (no more bra jokes, please) and every day was sunny and warm.  Needless to say, we got very lucky.  (And missed Hurricane Arthur!)

While each day brought new adventures, some events were truly memorable…..  For instance, I learned that the good folks of Jamaica, in preparation for my arrival, named a culinary dish after me.  It’s called “Jerk Chicken,” and just like its namesake, it is hot and spicy, and easier to swallow with a hefty dose of rum.  When we reached the Cayman Islands, we saw the maritime version of that movie about Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.  (JERSEY BUOYS)  After a glass or two of tequila, (in Cozumel) I actually tripped over the Captain’s Log!  (What was he doing on the bridge?)

The highlight of our trip was meeting new people and making friends with some wonderful folks from all over America…..  Kathy & Ernie from Naples, Beth and her hard-working hubby from Illinois, Susan and James from Florida, Jeanie & Carl from Michigan, and the list goes on and on……  (please forgive me if I left your name out!)  Like I said, the best parts of travel always include the amazing, unselfish, hard-working, honest, loyal, and intelligent citizens that you meet.  What a blessing to live in a country with so many wonderful human beings!

Which reminds me…..  Happy Birthday, America!  (You still look great for your age!)  We celebrated part of the Fourth by drinking some fine Caribbean rum in a famous water-side tavern…. a tavern that was once frequented by Captain Kidd.  (The tavern was mentioned in my second mystery, THE PIRATE PATH)  I was surprised to learn that some Caribbean bars actually charge you for resting your fists on the bar while you’re drinking!  Imagine my surprise when they handed me a…..   “Bar Knuckle Bill!”    (Hey, they don’t call me Captain Kidder for nothin’!)

Well, mates, I must leave thee now….. time to return to the mundane world of law and order… and a different set of bills.  (Electric, gas, water, etc.)  If you get a chance, check out the new reviews for THE SECOND MOURNING which have been posted on   Thanks for your continued support, and please continue to spread the word about the book… I may need bail money for my next voyage!  (Especially if I don’t get some new material!)

Have yourself a safe and wonderful week!  Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff






NO, I WILL NOT BE DISCUSSING MY HONEYMOON NIGHT AGAIN!  (Besides, as I explained to the wife, I had jet lag.)  Nor will I be discussing illegal gun shipments to Mexico.  Actually, I’m referring to my writing revisions, which have been fast and furious in order hit my publishing deadline for THE SECOND MOURNING.  Man, this editing thing is for the birds.  No rest for the wicked, I mean, the weary.  I don’t even have time to take a nap!  Which reminds me…..  If a person refuses to take a nap, could they be locked up for….. “resisting a rest?”  Hmmmm.

Well, what else is new?  (Wait, don’t tell me!)  I am pleased to announce that I received notification that DEVIL’S COVE (Adam Gold mystery number three) was recently nominated to receive the 2014 Raymond Chandler Writing Award!  However, I wouldn’t get my hopes up.  (Elmore Leonard is also in the running!)  Still, all of these little awards add up, and I am thrilled to be among such wonderful writers.  In other words, I have little chance of winning, but my writing resume keeps growing.  Nothing wrong with that.

On the subject of honors…..  The Mighty Cobra (my poker identity) was well on his way to another final table when he tangled with Rich “Big Win” Walker last Thursday evening.  Incredibly, my pair of sevens held up against his Ace/King!  However, the poker gods do have a wicked sense of humor, so a few hands later my two aces in the hole got busted by a lousy set of fives!  Life ain’t fair!

Did you folks hear that President Obama asked the Pope to make him a saint because of Obamacare?  The Pope said he would consider the request, since it was going to take a miracle to make the program work!  All I can say is Bingo!

I have attached another photograph to this blog, so if you are the first person to tell me where this lady went to college, you will win a $100 gift card!  Good luck, and no cheating!  (If you were willing to split the prize with me, I might give you the answer!)

Speaking of great prizes…..   I would like to share some bizarre history with you folks.  As you might know, my next book (The Second Mourning) deals with the assassination of President Garfield.  Well, try this on for size…..  Did you know that Lincoln was shot at the theatre named “Ford?”  Kennedy was shot in a car called “Lincoln,” which was made by….. Ford!  (Get this:  Both Presidents were shot on a Friday.  Both Presidents were shot in the head.  Lincoln’s secretary was named Kennedy.  Kennedy’s secretary was named Lincoln!)  Ah, the mystery of history!!

Well, my dear family and friends, that’s about it for this week.  Please tune in next Sunday for another thrilling post, and until we meet again, please have a safe and happy week.  Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

P.S.  This Sunday’s blog is dedicated to “Miss Mollie,” a very special dog who brought fifteen years of happiness to a dear friend.  R.I.P., little princess.

And now for your photograph…..





DO YOU REMEMBER THE WONDERFUL OPERA BY GILBERT AND SULLIVAN?  (Actually, it was the “Pirates of Penzance,” but  you get the point.)    Did you know that Gilbert had a brother named Filbert?  (The guys was a real “nut.”)  Both brothers knew “the score” when it came to cruising… and here are some impertinent facts about my last voyage…..

Our ship averaged 15 knots per hour, but we never got tangled up.  We traveled roughly 2,000 nautical miles.  The captain kept a detailed log, but one of the crew threw it in a fireplace.  (It must have been difficult carving all those details.)  Our gross tonnage (not including the passengers from Arkansas) was 113,ooo tons.  The ship’s draught was Guinness.  Any more questions?

Now here’s the funny part… when we stepped ashore I was confronted by a reporter from the Houston Chronicle who wanted to know if I enjoyed my trip.  I tried to restrain myself, but to no avail.  So…  I recited a funny bit of dialogue from a Marx Brothers film called “A Night at the Opera.”  (Which was fitting, considering my previous mention of Gilbert & Sullivan!)  Try to imagine me speaking in an Italian dialect, ala Chico Marx…..

“Sure, I’ll tell you about our trip.  The first time-a we start-a, we get-a half way to Mexico when we run out of fuel and we gotta go back.  Then we take-a twice as much-a fuel.  This time we were just about to reach port, maybe three feet, when what do you think?  We run out of fuel again.  Then back we go again and get-a more fuel.  This time we gotta plenty of gas.  Wella we getta half way to Mexico… when what do you thinka happen?  We forgota the ship!”

Since I delivered these lines with a straight-face, the reporter wasn’t sure if I was kidding or just crazy.  Nonetheless, my fellow passengers were quite amused.  (Homeland Security not so much.)  What can I say?

The purpose of our voyage was to scout out possible film locations for the movie version of THE PIRATE PATH.  We found some beautiful spots, drank some wonderful rum, ate like little piggies, and came home with a tattoo of a manatee on my knee.  (Just kidding about that last part.)  The best part?  It was all tax deductible!

We met some terrific folks on this voyage, and we enjoyed reminiscing with complete strangers.  Every time I think about the past it brings back memories.  How did I get so deep?  Never mind, I have to run.  Tonight is the Annual Judge Susan Birthday Dinner & Lamb Swallowing Festival, hosted by the incomparable Max and Barbara Talbott, formerly of Muncie, Indiana.  We are looking forward to another memorable evening of frivolity!

Have a wonderful week and please do not be concerned about my fading tan as you shovel snow from the sidewalk.  Nobody ever said that writing was easy!  Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff, “The Original Globetrotter”



WELL, HERE I AM ABOARD THE LOVELY CARIBBEAN PRINCESS!  (By the way, that’s the name of the ship, not a person.)  We are bound for Cozumel.  (Bound to get there in a day or two.)  I slept GREAT last night.  Wonderful mattress.  Ever hear of a “sea bed?”  One funny incident to report…  My wife asked someone where our “mustard station” was located.  (She meant muster station.)  I told her to go ahead, I would “ketchup” later!  I’m glad I packed some condiments, just in case I get lucky.

So what’s new in the wonderful world of literature?  Funny you should ask.  Are you sitting down?   The Dashiell Hammett Club of Los Angeles has chosen DEVIL’S COVE (my third mystery novel) as the “OUTSTANDING MYSTERY OF THE YEAR!”  WOW!  I am very honored and would like to thank you for the delightful surprise.  (Hammett was the author who created the hard-boiled character of Sam Spade.

I would also like to thank all of my Austin friends for buying so many copies of THE GRACELAND GANG and THE PIRATE PATH.  Both books have sold well and are now being featured on the BEST-SELLER table in the front of the store.  (BookPeople on N. Lamar Blvd.)  They just re-stocked the shelves, so if you need an autographed copy, come on down.  (I have attached a couple of photographs from a recent luncheon at the store.)

Tomorrow we reach Cozumel, and then (the day after) we go to Honduras, and then Belize.  The seas are calm, the sun is out, and it’s about 77 degrees outside.  Perfect tanning weather!  I got lazy this morning and slept in, missing my gym time.  That makes 3 years in a row.  I’m about to give up exercising!  My press my luck?

The Princess and I are registered to today’s poker tournament, which begins at 12 noon.  Hopefully, I will have some good news to share with you, but even if I don’t win the tournament, I will make up a good story!  (Any fool can convey the simple facts!)

I wish you all a safe and pleasant week, and if we don’t get captured by pirates, I will write again mid-week.  If we do get captured by pirates, send me a couple of roast beef sandwiches.  (Pirates love  “ARRRRR-by’s Roast Beef!)  Love to all…

Doc Yanoff




WELL, IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY NIGHT….. (Make that a hot and sunny day) whence our little ocean-going vessel limped along the Mosquito Coast of Central America, bound for the silver mines (tourist shops) of Cozumel, Mexico.  Our intrepid captain, Lorenzo Ronzoni, (formerly of Costa Cruise Line) gave the order to drop anchor (sadly without checking that we were already tied to the pier) and then we went ashore, searching for the Lost City of Gold!

We arrived in Mexico after our “Bungle in the Jungle,” which saw one of our shipmates attacked and bitten by a hostile simian, not to be confused with an angry Syrian.  The little monkey bit our compadre on the arm, and being a kind and gentle bunch of global-warming, rain-forest saving, nerds, we blew his head off.  (Not our compadre’s head, the monkey’s head!)  Just kidding.  We are American citizens.  We know what to do in these situations.  (We immediately filed a ten million dollar lawsuit!)

After trekking through the jungles of Honduras, we snuck across the border and found ourselves in Belize.  Unfortunately, the authorities also found us.  Who knew you needed a passport to enter a foreign country?  Anyway, we made our way to Belize City, and then realized that we had missed our dive and snorkel boat to the infamous “Blue Hole.”  (Who knew they actually had a schedule?)  I blamed my travel companions, and of course, they blamed me, so we returned to our “mother ship,” and consoled ourselves with a bucket of cold beer and more rum.

At this juncture, I might add that one of my companions was Judge Susan Marquess, of Austin, Texas.  Her honor happens to be celebrating her 39th birthday today, so on behalf of our expeditionary group, I would like to wish her a very happy birthday.  (Thank goodness we had a lawyer and judge in our party.  We were able to post some very reasonable bonds throughout our voyage.)

Some bonds are broken, and so are some bones!  I am happy to report that Barbara Talbott, the reigning poker champion of Honduras, only suffered a broken middle toe during her recent encounter with a Mayan pyramid.  Funny how fast some folks can run when they think they are being chased by a jaguar.  (Or a Mercedes.)  The “Princess of Poker”  (Her Mayan name) will be wearing a customized toe cast for six weeks, but after that, she will only have a slight limp for the rest of her natural life.  (A small price to pay for such a wonderful jungle adventure!)

Incidentally, Dr. Max Talbott has fully recovered from a nasty bout of Somnus Maximus.  (Sleeping Disease.)  Apparently, the dreaded illness was NOT a result of an insect bite…. but the result of a prodigious consumption of Ten Cane Rum.  Whew!  For a while we thought he was a goner.  Now that he has fully recovered (we think) I can tell you that we had already made final plans for the poor lad.  (I contacted the very best taxidermist in Belize.)  The idea was to stuff Max and put him on permanent display at the Blanton Museum in Austin.  (Max loves being around art.)

You might be interested to know, that just like last year, I had an evening visit from one of the local terrorist groups in Mexico.  Once again, I was forced to entertain a small band of masked baditos (or banditti, if you prefer) and as always, I was able to convince the poor outlaws that I had no denero.  (Turns out they wanted  Robert DeNiro, not money.)  They were the first autograph hunter/banditos in the region.  Odd group of outlaws, if you ask me.  (One of them wore glasses and had his/her nose sticking out of the sheet slot which was slit in the sheet sort of south of the smiling section of the silky satin sleeping sack.)  TRY SAYING THAT TEN TIMES IN A ROW!

For those of you who do not like tongue twisters, here are some facts about our recent voyage……   We traveled a total distance of 2,417 miles.  (Mostly upon the water.)  Our average ship speed was 18 knots.  Our average walking speed was .005 miles per hour.  Average nap time…..  64.8 minutes.  Average consumption of alcohol and drugs (Codeine)….. undetermined.

Finally, I would like to thank all of the people who purchased a copy of THE PRESLEY PLOT during the past two weeks.  Your generosity has now made the book an INTERNATIONAL BEST SELLER.  I can tell you that I actually saw my book in the ship’s library, and that many folks in Central America are now reading THE PRESLEY PLOT and are anxiously awaiting the release of MURDER ON MAIDEN LANE.  (This includes many of the local citizens of Honduras, Belize, and Mexico, and a large number of jungle guerillas (NOT gorillas!) drug cartel members, federales, I.R.S. fugitives, and deposed dictators.  (One cannot be too choosey about one’s readership.)

It will take a while to get this fantastic voyage out of my system (even with the antibiotics) so I will write again soon, whence I am fully recovered from my bout with pokus defeatus.  (Poker losses.)  Until then, it is wonderful to be home, back in the good old U.S.A.   I missed clean water, indoor toilets, and well-behaved monkeys. (Our elected officials.)  Take care, and they say in down south (far down south)….

Vaya con dios, no horda la Kaopectate!

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff    (Senor Jugador Malo)

P.S.  A word to the wise……  NEVER play Texas Hold ‘Em (or MONOPOLY) with the Corpus Christi Crusher.  Yeah, she’s that good!