Come On, Pilgrim! “Plymouth Rock & Roll” Available on Tuesday, November 24

*Apologies to Black Francis, but the joke begged to be made.

So your drunk uncle is snoring, and your creepy conservative cousin is going on about conspiracy theories. Escape them with the third book in the Clancy Parker mystery series, “Plymouth Rock & Roll.” It’s available exclusively on Amazon on Tuesday November 24.

Here’s the teaser:

In Plymouth Rock & Roll, guitarist Clancy Parker can’t wait to play a major hometown gig in Massachusetts, but she must first track down a rock star who is running amok.

Clancy’s ex-boyfriend, grunge icon Patrick Price, needs a big favor. Justin Hollander, the frontman for Patrick’s new supergroup, has gone AWOL after biting a police officer, and Patrick needs to find him so they can headline the New Pilgrim rock festival. If Clancy can corral Justin, she has a chance at reuniting with her ex and maybe even getting publicity for her band, the Marquee Idols.

As this job gets more high-profile by the minute, Clancy soon realizes she might achieve the fame she’s dreamed of, only she might not be alive long enough to enjoy it.

And of course the fine team at Streetlight Graphics came through with another fine cover, complete with pilgrim hat:


Want to read the first chapter? “The New Pilgrim” awaits you.


It’s On: “Exile on Slain Street” Available on Tuesday, August 27

“Exile on Slain Street,” the second book in the Clancy Parker mystery series, is making its debut exclusively on Amazon on Tuesday, August 27.

Here’s a little taste of the new mess that Clancy Parker has gotten herself into:

In Exile on Slain Street, undercover detective Clancy Parker must find the killer on the set of a reality TV dating show before she gets eliminated —- permanently.

Clancy thought she’d been hired to protect the show’s star, grunge-rock guitar god Patrick Price, from a stalker, but she quickly realizes she’s dealing with a clever murderer whose arsenal includes booby-trapped stripper poles and sabotaged stretch Hummers. As members of the cast and production team are killed one by one, Clancy finds herself with few allies. She’s at the mercy of a nosy camera crew and, even worse, reality show contestants who will do anything for fame.

However, Clancy is the right woman for this challenge. She plays guitar for a band, and she fancies herself a rock ‘n’ roll detective, like Kinky Friedman, only a whole lot prettier. With her music background, Patrick Price can’t resist her, but the attentions of a horny rock star threaten to distract her from her original purpose, which is to save her client’s life.

The cover, courtesy of the clever Streetlight Graphics, is a winner, too!


Want to try before you buy? Easy. Here’s a link to the first chapter of “Exile on Slain Street.”

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The Free Promo: The Reissue

I am running a second free Kindle promo for “Heavy Mental: A Clancy Parker Mystery,” and I keep thinking of classic album re-releases. Audiences need to be reminded of some records, like the Breeders’ recent “Last Splash: LSXX” deluxe disc, and the reissue might even attract new fans. (Because, really, if you haven’t heard “Last Splash,” what are you waiting for? Kim Deal is one of Muriel‘s heroes! Or shall I say heroines?)

It’s a little weird because I unleashed “Heavy Mental” onto the world a few months ago, and I ran a fairly successful three-day free promo for it recently. I’m on KDP Select, and I realized I have two free days left in the deal. So … why not reissue?

I am pleasantly surprised by the results. The free promo is hardly on par with a “Last Splash” reissue, but “Heavy Mental” made it to #23 in the Mystery > Women Sleuths category on June 4.

So, one more free promo day tomorrow. Can you help me make it hit the Amazon charts like a Cannonball?*

*Any alt-rock fan knows what’s coming, right?


“Heavy Mental” Rocks Its First Book Tour Stop

I’m going on my very first book tour, courtesy of Cozy Mystery Book Reviews, and I made my first stop at Must Read Faster.

Let me tell ya, I am enjoying this book tour thing. First off, the book tour doesn’t involve riding in the back of a van or “jamming econo.” I can tour in my pajamas or from the comfort of my own couch. (Or the comfort of my own work cubicle, but you can’t have everything.) Everything can be exactly the way I want it. I can even pluck the offending brown M&Ms from my candy fun pack!

What’s better than a cozy book tour? Happy book tour hosts! The wonderful Melissa of Must Read Faster enjoyed getting to know Clancy and the Marquee Idols:

I LOVED Clancy! LOVE love LURVVVED her. She’s definitely someone I could hang with. Pretty sarcastic, smart, and well she’s a freakin’ rock star..sort of.

Cue the backflips! (I’m in the cubicle … so when no one’s looking …) Now I’m looking forward to the next book tour stops and wondering what the audiences will think.

Now THIS Sums Up “Heavy Mental” Perfectly

A new 4-star review of “Heavy Mental” from Concordia Belle is up on Amazon. When describing “Heavy Mental” she writes:

“Clancy has a smart mouth, weird friends, a family to explain, and a case to figure out while trying to keep her band together.”

If Clancy were real, she’d be impressed. And this summary is even under the magical Twitter mark!

Heavy Mental Moments: The Myth of the Lavish Tour Rider

When any writer is trying to capture the spirit of rock ‘n’ roll decadence, the writer will inevitably bring up Van Halen’s demand that venues provide them with M&Ms … all brown ones removed.

That isn’t exaggeration. It’s true. The Smoking Gun has a copy of the tour rider, which also includes requests for an astonishing array of fluids and a bottle of K-Y jelly.

In a recent BuzzFeed profile, David Lee Roth claimed the band’s motivation for such ridiculous requests wasn’t exactly rock entitlement: “The legend that Van Halen wouldn’t play if they found brown M&Ms in their backstage jar is cited as a prime example of the era’s excess and hubris; the reality is that the request was buried in their contract rider as a test to see whether venues were abiding by the intricate technical specifications for the stage and sound.”

Okay, so Van Halen was being clever and testing the attention to detail of the concert venues, but those brown M&Ms wouldn’t have been in the tour rider if someone in the band hadn’t had a) quite an imagination and b) an equally large sense of entitlement.

The funniest aspect of Van Halen’s tour rider — and any other tour rider — is that most struggling musicians are lucky to get a single pack of M&Ms at the end of the night. For an example of a more realistic tour rider, take a look at what the Dead Milkmen requests. They seem reasonable, far more so than I would have expected from a band that goes by the name “Dead Milkmen.” (I can understand their feelings about Coors.)

I pondered what Clancy Parker’s band, the Marquee Idols, might request in their tour rider, and their expectations would be modest … with one exception:

Value pack of Fritos (Clancy)
2 cases of Heineken (one for Harold, Clancy’s landlord)
1 bottle of tequila and 2 bottles margarita mix (margaritas are Muriel and Shane’s fuel of choice)
Samples of local vegetation (Yes, Wayne’s euphemism for weed)
Box of condoms (We are talking about Muriel and Shane here)
1 bottle of K-Y (Again, Muriel and Shane, and they do intend it as a nod to Van Halen)
Fresh towels (Because rock musicians tend to be sweaty, and Douglas Adams was right — towels are good for everything!)

While music fans obsess over the world’s most famous tour rider, let’s not forget that the way the lesser bands live might be just as interesting. Unlike the major-league stars, smaller bands need to be resourceful!

*–Given the lavish nature of the tour rider, I am mildly surprised that they requested only one bottle of K-Y.