Talking Stick Resort, in Scottsdale, Arizona, has an ad that plays over and over whenever I’m watching a Phoenix Suns game. What’s so memorable about it is a quick shot of a young woman whispering sweet nothings into a man’s ear. Then her eyes shift to the right, directly into the camera. All male viewers must feel as I do: She’s looking right at me, the eternal come-on by the eternal flirt. Every time the ad comes on, I wait for that look, eternally susceptible to that glance as old as Eve.
In my essay on mystery/suspense series (March 21), I forgot to mention a few very good ones. C. J. Box has 15 novels about his Wyoming game warden, Joe Picket. Good action, great characters. P. J. Parrish (pseudonym for Kristy Montee and Kelly Nichols, two sisters who write collaboratively) has written ten novels starring a biracial p.i named Louis Kincaid. Well worth looking at. Stephen White, despite some fights with publishers, gave me a bunch of novels about the Boulder psychologist Dr. Alan Gregory and his police pal, Sam Purdy. Jeffrey Deaver began with The Bone Collector in which the forensic genius Lincoln Rhyme did his thing despite being a paraplegic. David Wiltsie provided the rock climbing FBI agent John Becker in a good series about catching really bad psychopaths. Lawrence Block, whom I mentioned as the author of the Matt Scudder series, also gave us the anti-hero Keller, a hit man who, despite his occupation, makes us side with him. Laura Lippman wrote a bunch about Tess Monaghan. And, how could I forget one of the masters of prose, James Lee Burke, who introduced me to the Louisiana cop/private eye, Dave Robicheaux. All of these, as well as those mentioned in my earlier blog, are worth reading, more than worth reading. Find them. Read them. You won’t be disappointed. You’ll be as intrigued as I am with that Talking Stick lady.