Posts Tagged ‘Heart of Barkness’



October 20th, 2019 Posted 7:20 am

On Sunday we do beginnings. At signings I usually read the whole first scene, as I was mentioning to the folks at the beautiful Eldredge Library in Chatham (Cape Cod) the other night. When they take the book home they’ve already got a head start. Head starts are good in life, although paying a ringer to take your kid’s SAT is not how to go about it.

Here’s the beginning of the first scene of Heart of Barkness, the latest Chet and Bernie novel.

“Red-letter day, Chet,” said Sergeant Rick Torres, our buddy at the Valley PD Missing Persons Department. “In the car.”

Red-letter day was a mystery to me, and maybe red is, too. Bernie says I can’t be trusted when it comes to red, something I’ve never understood. I knew fire hydrants were red, for example, knew that as well as I know my own name. Which is Chet, in case you missed it, right up there off the jump. I also know “in the car,” and never need to be asked twice. Or even once. Rick opened the passenger-side door of the black-and-white. I hopped in, sat up nice and tall, totally alert, ready for anything. Was my tongue hanging out? Possibly. I got most of it stuffed back in. We have standards, me and Bernie, just one of the reasons that the Little Detective Agency is so successful, except for the finances part. It’s called the Little Detective Agency on account of Bernie’s last name being Little, but we’re equal partners, Bernie handling the gunplay and the so-therefores and me bringing other things to the table. Maybe we’ll get to my teeth a little later.


Power Back On!


October 19th, 2019 Posted 7:58 am

No more bomb cyclones, please, at least for a while. Meanwhile, questions about Song For Chet, the original song from Heart of Barkness, the most recent Chet and Bernie novel, came up at the signing on Thursday. Here’s how to get it. (The fiddle solo is by the great Gene Elders, longtime musician in George Strait’s Ace in the Hole band.)




Searching For The Truth …


August 22nd, 2019 Posted 8:16 am

… in Heart of Barkness (the new Chet and Bernie):

What do you know? Shermie “Shoulders” Shouldice!

“Hey, Shermie,” Bernie said. “What are you doing on the loose?”

Exactly! Hadn’t we sent him up the river not so long ago? No water in that particular river, but not the point. Why wasn’t he in an orange jumpsuit and doing whatever they do up at Northern State when the hot sun goes down and they have to stop with the rock breaking?

“Early parole,” Shermie said. “On account of overcrowding. This is a civilized country, don’t forget.”

“It’s hard sometimes,” Bernie said.

Shermie laughed and slapped his knee. It sounded like a gunshot. “You can say that again.”

Bernie did not. Instead he went with, “You’re the bouncer here?”

“My mom’s tight with the owner,” said Shermie. His face pinkened a bit. Was Shermie blushing? I’d seen plenty of human blushing, but never on a face like that. Right away I knew it was one of those once-is-enough things.

“Everybody loves somebody sometime,” Bernie said.

“Wow!” said Shermie. “That’s so true!”


Not Beginnings


August 18th, 2019 Posted 7:56 am

Normally on Sundays we do beginnings, but yesterday we happened to run across a journalist we know, so why not take a look at the scene in Heart of Barkness with Chet, Bernie, and Myron Siegel, an old reporter put out to pasture?

Myron gave Bernie a look. It reminded me of the time – the one and only time – that I’d been in an art gallery. This was with Bernie and Suzie, and she’d gazed at a – what was the word? Sculpture, that was it. She’d gazed at sculpture of a cat, a cat which had turned out to be made of glass – an important detail then, but surely not now, after all this time – in the same way Myron was gazing at Bernie.


The Books

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