Greetings from Asbury Park, this Sunday!

Greetings from Asbury Park! Well, not at this exact moment, but on Sunday 4/29, I will be reading at Noir at the Bar in Asbury Park at Capitoline’s. They have a lovely bar with a band called the Black Flamingos playing in between stories. Hosted by Jen Conley and Jay Butkowski, it’s a bit of a sausage fest but I promise I’ll be a hot Italian sazeech:
Me – with copies of Life During Wartime to sign sell and raffle
Scott Adlerberg – author of Jack Waters, a thrilling New Orleans to Caribbean adventure
Angel Luis Colon – author of the Blackie Jaguar and Fantine Park crime novellas
Lee Matthew Goldberg – author of The Mentor
Alex Segura – author of the Pete Fernandez Miami PI series
Dave White – author of the Jackson Donne Jersey PI novels
and Wallace Stroby, author of the Crissa Stone series, my favorite thief since Parker, and his latest thriller, Some Die Nameless.
details: Sunday April 29th from 6pm to 9pm at Capitoline’s 639 Cookman Ave, Asbury Park NJ

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You down with KGB? Yeah, you know me… join me on April 3

This Tuesday I’ll be one of many authors reading at the glorious red room of the KGB Bar in Manhattan. Come join me with Tim O’Mara, Laura K. Curtis, Alex Segura, Carrie Smith, RG Belsky, Leanna Renee Heiber, and Wallace Stroby. They have a nice selection of Russian beers and it’s always a good time. Come and drink to our new overlords!

I’ll be giving away a copy of Life During Wartime and reading a new story.

KGB

When: 6:30 PM, Tuesday April 3rd

Where: The Red Room (upstairs) at the KGB Bar, 85 East 4th Street, Manhattan.

Who: You and Me and a Dog Named Bee.

 

 

Montclair Authors Cocktail Reception and Don’t Quit the Day Job!

Thursday March 8th, I’ll be attending a Montclair Authors Meet & Greet cocktail reception sponsored by Sotheby’s and Watchung Booksellers. Come join us, it will be a good time.

From 7:00PM until 9:00PM, At 32 Valley Road Montclair, at Prominent Properties. Valerie Wilson Wesley is among those attending.
2018-03-02 13_44_36-Meet the Authors of Montclair Reception at Sotheby's _ watchung booksellers

Also, Victoria Watson asked me to write about writing with a full-time day job, as part of her series Don’t Quit the Day Job, and I obliged. You can read it here.

 

Two Saps at The Mysterious Bookshop…

This Wednesday, join me and Nick Kolakowski for a reading and signing at The Mysterious Bookshop, starting at 6:30PM. There will be beer!

2018-02-16 13_26_04-New this week at the Mysterious Bookshop - tpluck@gmail.com - Gmail

 

Nick will have his novella Slaughterhouse Blues and I’ve got Life During Wartime, a collection of 21 stories, from Denny the Dent, stories chosen for the Year’s Best Mystery and Crime, and the Jay Desmarteaux yarn that begins where Bad Boy Boogie leaves off.

Can’t make it? Order a signed copy from the store, to pick up or have shipped to you! They can even have books inscribed for you.

Pre-order Slaughterhouse Blues signed

Pre-order Life During Wartime signed

 

Life During Wartime pre-order discounts and events

For years, readers wanted my stories in print. Well, now’s your chance!

Life During Wartime is a blackjack 21 of my best stories, including “The Big Snip” which appeared in The Best Crime & Mystery 2016, edited by Kristin Kathryn Rusch (and originally in Dark City Lights, edited by Lawrence Block). It has the Jay Desmarteaux story that begins where Bad Boy Boogie leaves off,. and three Denny the Dent tales, as well as new stories you haven’t seen before, like “The Cronus Club” and stories that were only in anthologies and hard to find out of print zines, like “Firecracker” and “Freedom Bird” and “The Story of O Street,” or crowd pleasers like “GunPlay” that were only heard at Noir at the Bar events. It snagged a great review from Out of the Gutter, and you can read the first story, “Freedom Bird,” here on Criminal Element.

Life During Wartime coverLike the song the title story gets its name from, this book is a van loaded with weapons, locked up and ready to go.

And the best thing is that Barnes & Noble has decided to bless me with a 30% discount on the paperback! A mere $12 for a 364 page collection. Vhat a bargain! as they say in Havaii…. (you’ll have to read “Six Feet Under God” to get that joke).  Down & Out Books has a generous 60% discount on the ebooks if you prefer digital. That’s practically a Kindle matchbook price, if you want both.  The book drops January 29th, so who knows how long Barnes and/or Noble will keep this low price.

Here are the events I’ll be attending in 2018, so far. I WILL be at Bouchercon in St. Petersburg, hopefully with the second Jay Desmarteaux novel, RIFF RAFF, either in print or about to be released, so there will be ARCs or books, we shall see. I’m not rushing this one, it’s set in Louisiana and encompassing that big beautiful state and its many people is taking all I’ve got. But I’m loving it!

I hope to see you at one of these events. If you can’t make it, and would like a signed copy of Life During Wartime, reply to this email. They are $21 shipped, but I bundle them with Blade of Dishonor for $35 or all three books- Bad Boy Boogie, Blade, LDW, for $50 shipped.

Thursday, February 8th at 7:00 PM: The official launch of my story collection Life During Wartime at Watchung Booksellers in Montclair! Snacks and a brief reading and a Q&A.

Wednesday, February 21st at 6:30 PM: Life During Wartime  and Slaughterhouse Blues signing event with Nick Kolakowski at The Mysterious Bookshop. Join me and Nick for a night of noir. One week after Valentine’s Day, your heart will have recovered.

Thursday, March 8th at 6:00 PM: A Montclair Authors Meet & Greet at Sotheby’s, 32 Valley Rd, Montclair, NJ. Come join us for wine and cheese and rub suede elbow patches with local Montclair authors! I’ll be in the corner eating all the Gruyere.

Reviews During Wartime

Happy new year!

I’m getting over the flu, which I contracted while researching the next Jay Desmarteaux novel, wandering around Iberia and Vermilion Parishes in Louisiana. I visited the grave of bluesman Slim Harpo and the Louisiana Capitol Building, where Huey Long was assassinated. You can read about it at Do Some Damage, where I call it Research Without a Cause.

Which answers the question to the first review of Life During Wartime, my new story collection, up at Out of the Gutter: “Amazingly, the dialogue, settings, and situations all ring true. Either Pluck has done some serious research or he’s lived a life on the move!”
I love to travel, and I love writing stories that use what I see and learn from new places and people. If you haven’t pre-ordered Life During Wartime, Down & Out Books has a 60% discount on the ebooks. I will be signing the book at Mysterious Bookshop and Watchung Booksellers in February, and I will put the updates on my Events page. If you can’t get one in person, Down & Out Books has all the links to your favorite suppliers.

Life During Wartime Paperback

Some of my research had a cause, like dropping into Vermilionville, a living Acadian village rather like Colonial Williamsburg, stopping by to see the Evangeline Tree in St. Martinsville, a memorial to Longfellow’s poem of the same name, based on people who lived in the area.  One of them is name checked in James Lee Burke’s latest novel Robicheaux, which I reviewed for Criminal Element. I did stop to eat at Victor’s Cafeteria where Dave Robicheaux and Cletus Purcell grab breakfast in New Iberia. You read about my adventures in Cajun Country at SleuthSayers, and you can also see my pictures on Instagram, on Facebook, or Twitter.

Another story that drew from my travels is “Truth Comes Out of Her Well to Shame Mankind,” in Alive in Shape and Color. I’ve received a lot of emails about this one, which Liz French of Library Journal called “stunning,” and the reviewer at the New York Times found disturbing enough to call me out by name. Robert Lopresti loved it but wasn’t sure if it was “crime”, but I think murders at an archaeological dig in Germany are criminal enough.  So, if you haven’t jumped on Alive in Shape and Color, you don’t want to miss it. Like its Edward Hopper-themed forebear, it’s making a splash.

Life During Wartime events! Don’t say you weren’t warned…

Thursday, February 8th at 7:00 PM: The official launch of my story collection Life During Wartime at Watchung Booksellers in Montclair! Snacks and a brief reading and a Q&A.

Wednesday, February 21st at 6:30 PM: Life During Wartime  and Slaughterhouse Blues signing event with Nick Kolakowski at The Mysterious Bookshop. Join me and Nick for a night of noir. One week after Valentine’s Day, your heart will have recovered.

Thursday, March 8th at 6:00 PM: A Montclair Authors Meet & Greet at Sotheby’s, 32 Valley Rd, Montclair, NJ. Come join us for wine and cheese and rub suede elbow patches with local Montclair authors! I’ll be in the corner eating all the Gruyere.

Murder & Mayhem in Milwaukee!

I’m honored to be a guest at Murder & Mayhem in Milwaukee this year. Thanks to the Jordans and everyone involved. I was planning on attending anyway–I’ve heard so much about this great convention/party–but this makes it extra sweet. I’ll be on a panel moderated by Shaun Harris, author of The Hemingway Thief, which is a great fun read whether you love or hate Ernest, so check it out.

The Malmons will be there as will by publisher, Eric Campbell of Down & Out Books, with copies of Killing Malmon, where 30 writers (including myself) killed Dan in amusing ways, to raise money for the MS society. If you can’t make it for a signed copy, get yours here.

Of course I’ll have Bad Boy Boogie and I’ll be writing Born on the Bayou, so if you want to influence a scene that I’ll write hungover on Saturday or Sunday morning, or late in my motel Friday night, now is the time. I can’t incorporate the Bronze Fonz, as it is all set in Louisiana, but I may have Jay meet the statue of Ignatius Reilly from A Confederacy of Dunces… I’m 17,500 words in and having a blast. Which I hope means you will too, when you get to read it next year.

There will be a lot of beer. I’m going to the Lakefront Brewery to see the Schlitz bottling line filmed in the opening credits of Laverne & Shirley and I will only answer to the name The Big Ragu during this trip. I do not care if Milwaukee is “trying to shed the L&S image” as I read on one website… embrace it. You are so much more, I am sure, and I will see that, but come on. Hassenpfeffer Incorporated! Bah. It’s like Jersey trying to shed The Sopranos. It’s not like Laverne and Shirl were the cast of Jersey Shore.

And I’m jealous that your city has such a great song named after it. Written in 1903 by Dan Quinn before Jerry Lee Lewis made it (more) famous… I like this version:

What Made Milwaukee Famous Made a Loser Out of Me

And in case you missed it, I went as Bluto for Halloween. S.W. Lauden went as a California Highway Patrolman, mirror shades and all. If he brings his costume, we may walk around the con looking like half of The Village People.

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