Saturday, July 30, 2011

CSI Launch in the Lair!

by Jo Robertson

We're not exactly having a Launch Party today. Do I hear groans and sighs of disappointment. The Banditas and their BB's are always up for a raucous event.

Never fear! We have the usual finger foods and goodies on hand. Sven's been hard at work in the kitchen making canapes and those little barbecued sausages, as well as caviar and champagne.
Unfortunately he's not getting the usual "help" from Lars, who's promised everyone a foot massage today. It's probably just as well since Lars tends to drop things.

The party preparations are on temporary halt, however, because we have a serious problem in the Lair.
Someone (andI'm not mentioning any names) stole the proof copy of Jo-Mama's debut book "The Watcher."

In case you're confused look to the left for Evidence #1 -- the purloined book!

Missing, MISSING, I tell you! And someone must pay!

You might suspect the Golden Rooster carried the book off to the Land of Oz or even -- shudder -- to the "right coast." Or perhaps a Bandita Buddy from down south "appropriated" the proof prize. Not naming names, again, but I hear some of those southern gals have sticky fingers.

In fact, our famous Chook is NOT the culprit, but the investigator. So line up the usual suspects and let the case begin!

What? What? Oh, that's right, some naughty visitor to the Lair has stolen Jo-Mama's proof of "The Watcher." Let me see, let me see (dons his Sherlock Holmes hat and whips out his magnifying glass).

Not I! I've been slaving in the kitchen for days (looks darkly at Lars). With NO help, I might add.

Don't look at me (eyes Aunty Cindy's pretty colored toes greedily). I've been playing with pinkies all day.

[Enter Gladiators Demitrius and Marcus, flashing swords.]

What about those two?

Not likely. They never learned to read, just a bunch of steroid-pumped hunks (looks jealously at the Gladiators).

Say it isn't so! Reading is the foundation of civilization!

Whatever. (Bends over, examining a dusty spot on the end table of the reading room.) Hmmmm, looks like the book was lying here.

Good grief! How can you tell MY book was there? There are millions of Bandita books around here. (Flings her arms wildly) It IS the Romance Bandits Lair, after all. Books are coming out all the time!

I see dead people.

What are you talking about, you crazy chook?

Dead people! Aren't your books full of dead people?

Well, sure, "The Watcher" is a romantic thriller, but it's not ALL about murder and mayhem. There's a very sensual love story in it. Kate and Slater have an instant connection between them, and although she's single minded to the point of annoyance, Slater's just the man to, uh . . . distract her.
Take a look at Evidence #2 -- the back cover blurb:

Forensic psychiatrist Kate Myers believes the killer of two teenage girls in Bigler County, California, is the same man who savagely murdered her twin sister over fifteen years ago. Working with a single-minded tenacity, she sets out to prove it.

Deputy Ben Slater hides his personal pain behind the job, but Kate's arrival in his county knocks his world on its axis. He wants to believe her wild theory, but the idea of a serial killer with the kind of pathology she proposes is too bizarre.

Together they work to find a killer whose roots began in a small town in Bigler county, but whose violence spread across the nation. A Janus-like killer, more monster than man, he fixates on Kate. The killer wants nothing more than to kill the "purple-eyed girl again."

[Enter Paolo, Lucius, and the Hockey Hunks, led by Zach, all bearing trays of champagne and bottle of Coke and Pepsi -- perennial rivals in the Lair]

(shouting at the top of his lungs) Let the festivities begin!

(Grabbing for the champagne) Give me one of those! (sniffs loudly) I hope that nasty Ermigarde isn't going to eat all the food.

(Stumbles about, muttering) Clues, clues, must follows the clues.

Readers, join us in the hunt for my proof copy of "The Watcher." Who do YOU think purloined the book? One of the Banditas or Buddies? One of the Lair denizens or guests? Or someone we'd never, ever think of! Heh, heh, who's the main suspect??!!

One clever commenter who convinces me who the guilty culprit is and WHY will receive a free download of "The Watcher" when it becomes available the end of August.

Everyone who emails me a snail mail addy ( will receive an autographed postcard of the book cover and will be entered to win a PRINT COPY of "The Watcher."


Lolarific said...


The GR as an investigator. At least his mind didn't seem to wander as far and wide as he does!

Not sure who might've abducted the book, but I doubt any of the Banditas are guilty!

Kim in Hawaii said...

Champagne is a great tactic to loosen tongues! I'll defer to the GR for the interrogations!

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Congrats on "winning" the GR, Lola! Will you be assisting him in the investigation?

I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss all the Banditas as innocent. It's always those "quiet ones" (*KOFF* Beth *KOFF* Christie) who will fool ya!

(Aunty squints suspiciously) And I don't trust all the cabana boys either! :-P


Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Knowing the GR as you do, I'm surprised you would trust him with such a task.

Are you SURE you don't have some possible suspects?!?!


jo robertson said...

Whooo hoooo, those are some big-butt pictures! Sorry, folks, blogger has hated me all week!

Congrats on getting the chook, Lolarific. Can you get him to "talk"?

LOL, the Banditas ARE terribly nice, but I wonder if they're above scarfing up a proof copy??

jo robertson said...

Oh, yes, Kim, bring on the champagne and other assorted drinks. That'll definitely make some of us spill the beans.

jo robertson said...

Hi, AC! Thanks for stopping by so late. Getting the post up today was quite tricky.

I'm not sure any of the residents of the Lair can be completely trusted. Some of those characters have been known to be involved in a variety of nefarious actitvities.

jennifertanner said...

Are you serving Diet Coke with a wedge of lime? If that's the case, I'll bring my bite-sized BLT appetizers and some rumaki. :)

I suspect the caterer made off with the proof after diverting the GR's attention with a cheese puff.

Congrats in your debut, Jo! Gee, I might break down and get an iPad so I can read the book!

Tawny said...

Oh, yay. A mystery in the Lair. Someone should tell that rooster that he looks silly wearing a deerstalker, though. His feathers are poking out all crazy weird.

I have NO idea who would be so naughty as to sneak off with Jo's book. None at all... but I'll bet they are curled up reading and loving it while we all ponder :-)

So to help us ponder, I'll bring in some cupcake pops (red velvet, anyone?) and a few more pitchers of margaritas. Because we do need to celebrate Jo's wonderful news in style :-D

Jane said...

Yay, another launch party. Congrats, Jo. I'm a huge Hercule Poirot and Jane Marple, but my powers of deduction are not on par with theirs. I'm inclined to believe it was a fellow Bandita who made off with the copy of "The Watcher."

marybelle said...

I couldn't begin to guess, but I want to know "Who watches THE WATCHER?"

Helen said...

Well done Lolariffic you are going to have a great time with him today questioning him


This is going to be a tough one because I know how many people are really eager to read this book (me included) so the big queston who took the book???

Cassondra and Jeanne love things that go bang and I am asuming that with this being a romantic thriller that there is going to be some bang in the book, then of course there are all the visitors that lurk and all the Bandita Buddies that are constantly dropping in.

So who wants to read this book badly enough to take it and would have to have distracted all of the Cabana Boys The Gladiators Lars and Sven as well as The Hockey Hunks and Ermigarde as well must be one tough person.

GR start investigating for us we need to get this copy back :)

Have Fun

barb said...

keep on plying GR with champagne Lolarific

Congrats on the book Jo.... I can think of another quiet one and is missing at the moment.... hi Anna

Nancy said...

Lolarific, congrats on nabbing the rooster!

Jo, a fun post! I'm so excited about The Watcher and am looking forward to reading it.

As for the culprit, I suspect the GR of stealing it and trying to cast suspicion elsewhere!

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

Perhaps it was a group effort, other than the deadline cave there are peeps everywhere in the lair all the time. It would take a group effort to make off with The Watcher. Or an inside job, you know we have misplaced books before, and found Paolo in his quarters with the prize. Where is Paolo by the way, anyone seen him recently?

Lars, could you let go of Auntie's pinkies long enough to bring me a Toasted Almond and some of the little cocktail weenies? Oh, and a foot rub would be really nice. You have wonderful hands.

jo robertson said...

Abso-frickin'-lutely, Jen! Any form of Coke or Pepsi (although you know my preference, tee hee). The wedge of lime adds a nice touch.

BLT appetizers??? Ah, you're killing me!

Uh, what's rumaki (hanging head in shame)?

jo robertson said...

Thanks, Jen! And thanks for hosting me on Romance Uni on August 22. This is my very first blog tour and I feel like Madonna (like a virgin). Yeah, that ship has sailed :-D.

jo robertson said...

Jen, I hate to sound like a sales person giving a pitch, but I adore my Kindle. If you don't need other features, but just want an e-reader, I think it's the best.

Just my 02.

jo robertson said...

LOL, Tawny, I'd forgotten those hats were called deerstalkers.

Bring on more food, bring on more drinks!

I'm sort of liking Jen's idea about the caterer (not Sven, of course, but the outside hired caterers). It'd be just like the GR to fall for the old cheese puff distraction.

jo robertson said...

A fellow Bandita, Jane! You wound me. Hmmm, like AC said, some of the quiet ones bear a bit of watching.

We love watching the Poirot on PBS. I love David Suchet's portrayal of the detective.

Have you watched any of the new series on PBS starring Rufus Sewell as a Venetian detective?

jo robertson said...

Clever question, Marybelle. I think that's what's so spooky about my villain (aka The Watcher). No one's been able to "catch" him until Kate Myers and Slater come along.

Deb said...

Congrats on your release, Jo!!!

The GR works for Tim Tams; heck, I'd work for Tim Tams! ;) But, I have to tell you, I'm not good at these brain teaser-detective scenarios. I'm clueless and not much help.

jo robertson said...

LOL, Helen, that's a big cast of suspects. I imagine Ermigarde is frightening enough to just seize the book in broad daylight. The gladiators too, but Lars and Sven might be a little sneakier about it.

The Watcher's weapon of choice is a knife. You know what they say about a gunfight -- bring a gun. You know what they say about a knife fight -- bring a gun.

So I imagine Slater and Kate will have to outwit their suspect and endure a bit of hand-to-hand by the end of the book.

jo robertson said...

Thanks, Barb. Oh, yes, Fo Anna is a sly one and she's keeping a low profile right at the moment.


jo robertson said...

Ah, that's a bold deduction, Nancy. Perhaps we should look at the chook again.

Thanks, I was feeling a bit silly when I wrote the post. Funny isn't my forte, but I enjoyed the break from the dark and dangerous (Hi, Jeanne!!!!).

jo robertson said...

LOL, Dianna. AC's toes are always prettily painted and very lovely. I can attest to that and must give Lars the credit. She must tip him "very well" (wink, wink).

A group effort of insiders, hmmmm. That's a good guess.

jo robertson said...

Hey, Deb, you're allowed to be completely clueless as long as you bring along the Tim Tams!

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Red Velvet Cupcake Pops, Tawny?!?! OOOOO! Heavenly! Let me just finish Pink/Jen's BLT appetizer and I'll take TWO!

Hmmm, Dianna, you may be onto something. WHERE IS Paolo?!?! I didn't see him last night and I haven't seen him this morning either.



Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

ROFLOL, marybelle!

Obviously SOMEONE wasn't watching The Watcher quite closely enough! Or maybe someone was watching too closely???


Donnell said...

Dear Jo: It's elementary who stole the proof copy of your debut book, The Watcher!!! The folks who have been *dying* for it to come out for years. But it's bigger than the Banditas ever imagined.

One harmless little statement of "The Watcher" Bears Watching has grown into a conspiracy.

Pardon me while I answer the door; it's time for my medicine. But while I've been accused of conspiracy theories before, this time it's the real deal. You've been warned.

Go ahead and look for a culprit among you, you won't find him...

It's now grown from "The Watcher" bears Watching, to the "The Watcher" bears Reading...

Congrats, Jo & what a terrific cover!!!

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Hey Helen,
How RIGHT you are! Between the Cabana Boys, Gladiators, Hockey Hunks, Lars & Sven, AND Ermingarde, that is ONE TRICKSEY THIEF!

Oh yes, me preciousssss... ;-)


Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

I think you are onto something! BOTH Annas (Fo and VA) are waaay too quiet. Something MUST be up!


jo robertson said...

Cindy said, "Red Velvet Cupcake Pops, Tawny?!?! "

I KNOW!! Do you have one of those special baking pans that you put lollipop sticks in? Of course, I could never stop at one; it's only a BITE, you know.

jo robertson said...

Oh, and I see someone's brought those mini cupcakes. Really, who are they kidding. I mean, they're fine for the kiddies, but no cupcake-loving adult would stop at one mini-cupcake!

jo robertson said...

Hi, Donnell!! You're too kind, but I think you're right. Maybe I should focus on the readers who enjoy an exciting romantic thriller. Hmmmm, let's see.

LOL at your conspiracy theories. Maybe aliens thought the book was an earth lifeform and have taken in on their spaceship to "examine" it.

As a non sequitur, I toally want to see "Cowboys and Aliens!"

jo robertson said...

So, you think it's an "Anna" conspiracy, Aunty Cindy. Hmmmm, could be. Vrai and Fo are usually here early.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

LOL, I think I'm with Nancy that the GR did it and casting suspicion elsewhere. Sneaky little bird.

jo robertson said...

I'm starting to lean that way, too, Trish. He's a wily chook.

jennymilch said...

Jo, big congrats on the upcoming release!

Jane said...

Jo, I love Zen and I watch all the mystery shows on PBS. I can't wait for Inspector Lewis to return in the fall.

jo robertson said...

Hi, Jane. Yes, Zen! My husband loves Inspector Lewis too. My maiden name is Lewis, cool, huh?

jo robertson said...

Thanks for stopping by, Jennymilch, and for wishing me good luck!

Anna Campbell said...

Phew, I made it! I thought I'd missed the party and you know how much I HATE to miss a party. Especially for something as fabulous as our Jo's debut! Hmm, starting to channel Little Women there. MUST...STOP...

OK, I'm following two lines of inquiry here. One is that Beth, that whey-faced sneak from LW stole it and has faked her own death so her sisters will give her five bloomin' minutes to herself to read it. My other line of inquiry is that the League of Bestselling Thriller Writers have stolen the Watcher to use it as inspiration for their next work!


Seriously, Jo, congrats on your release. And I LOVE that cover. It's so deliciously creepy.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Lolarific! You never know who has the book, not 'round here!

And the chook as a private dic...investigator? Hmmm.


Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Jo!!! CONGRATS!!! I know the copy's missing, but the book?

FAB-U-LOUS!!! I got the chance to sneak a peak before the copy went missing.

*whistles, looks innocent*

And WOW!!! The Watcher is just....fabulous. Not that I had any doubts, but it's thrilling, hot, chilling, suspenseful....everything an amazing page-turning suspense should be!


Now, pass me that champagne, and a magnifying glass. Maybe I'll find some clues too...

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Jo said: I'm not sure any of the residents of the Lair can be completely trusted. Some of those characters have been known to be involved in a variety of nefarious actitvities.

Not MY characters...

Oh, yeah. I guess my characters could potentially be prime suspects, given their proclivities...


Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Jo said: Have you watched any of the new series on PBS starring Rufus Sewell as a Venetian detective?

Ooooh, I love Rufus Sewell! What's the series???

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Donnell said: Pardon me while I answer the door; it's time for my medicine. But while I've been accused of conspiracy theories before, this time it's the real deal. You've been warned.


Ahem, sorry. did the medicine go down? *grins with glee* And did you realize it wasn't your USUAL medicine? Bwahahahahaah!

Much is afoot in the Lair today!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Jo said: As a non sequitur, I toally want to see "Cowboys and Aliens!"

Me too, Jo! It's going to be the theme for the Annual Addams Family Halloween party!

Cowboys and Aliens. Now THAT's going to be fun!

Helen said...

There is lots of food and drink to keep us on our toes while we find this book lots of thoughts on WHO the culprit is but yes maybe it is the GR after all he is obviously the only one that can get past everyone in the lair to get it LOL

Have Fun

LilMissMolly said...

I think it was Col. Mustard in the Library of course! A Bandita left it there after reading it, and he just couldn't resist!

Joan said...


Woohoo!!! Congratulations to you JoMama!!!!!

The proof is in the pudding...WAIT!!!!

That's it!!! Tell the GR to look for somebody with pudding face :D

jennifertanner said...

Hi Jo...

Rumaki is one of those throw back appetizers from the fifties or sixties. My mom used to make them. There are a lot of different variations... one is with a dried date, pit removed, stuffed with a soft cheese, then wrapped in bacon..skewer with a toothpick and give it a quick broil. You get savory and sweet in one bite. I've had it with water chestnuts wrapped in bacon, chicken liver, figs...etc.

Happy to host you or any of the lovely Banditas on RU any time!

Kate Carlisle said...

Now listen, I'm not saying I took it ... but I wish I did! I'm dying to read THE WATCHER. I tried downloading it but I can't get it until August. Waaahhh. You tease!

Anyway, I love this post! It's especially nice to see that lazy GR working finally! Not that he found the culprit or the book, but I have confidence that he will--if he's not waylaid by Tim Tams again. Helen, keep them away from him!

Congratulations, Jo!! Can't wait to read this book!!

Louisa Cornell said...

Keep him on task, Lola !! Finding the book, that is! NOT eating and drinking all of the party refreshments!

Congrats, Jo Mama !!! Can't wait to get my hands on this book! Which means I DON'T have it. We Southern girls DO have sticky fingers but it is because of all this heat and humidity!!

And I am bringing some Hashbrown Casserole to this party. WITH some of our HUGE Death By Chocolate Cupcakes !! After all, it is a KILLER party!

I would say check La Campbell's handbag, but the last time I did I found Richard Armitage hog-tied and gagged! Poor man was covered in lint, a few coins, a lipstick and a tissue and NOTHING ELSE!

Anna Campbell said...

Louisa says:
I would say check La Campbell's handbag, but the last time I did I found Richard Armitage hog-tied and gagged! Poor man was covered in lint, a few coins, a lipstick and a tissue and NOTHING ELSE!

Richard says: That's the way, uh-huh, uh-huh, I LIKE IT!!!!

Anna says: Me 2.

Daz said...

Congrats on the launch of the new book, Jo.

I hope your proof turns up. My money is on the GR pinching it and he's just covering his tracks and confusing the issue by pretending to investigate the theft. :-) You can't trust that chook.

Pat Cochran said...

Wellllll! It's not I, not this little
ole Southren (not mispelled! This how
the word is sometimes pronounced by
oldtime Southerners!) gal! LOL!
Hmmm - who could it be? I know that so
much interest is in the GR as the
culprit because he is such a rascal!
Hmmm, maybe so, maybe no! Who else
hasn't surfaced for the festivities?
Someone who is hidden away enjoying
The Watcher!

Congratulations, Jo! Count me as one
who is looking forward to reading your
romance thriller!!

Miz Pat Cochran

jo robertson said...

Whoa, I shouldn't have taken that wee nap this afternoon, but the GR has been driving me crazy with his faux investigation.

jo robertson said...

Anna said, "Phew, I made it! I thought I'd missed the party and you know how much I HATE to miss a party."

LOL, Anna, and you know a party's NOT a party until you show up. So glad you could make it. I was afraid everyone would be immersed in Saturday activities.

jo robertson said...

Yes, Anna! You MUST stop channeling Little Women. This Jo is nothing like that Jo and THE WATCHER would make the original "Jo" shiver in her boots even though she's quite adventurous if I remember rightly.

Huzzah, indeed! I like the League of Best-Selling Thriller Writers idea. I could get down with that kind of flattery!

jo robertson said...

Jeanne, thanks! Have I said how I love you?? Thanks for reading my book and giving it a stellar review. You're the best.

Zen is the name of the show and the last name of the Venetian detective played by the delicious Refus Sewell. He's an understated Italian detective, known for his "honor" (that might be a paradox LOL), and always manages to get caught up in situations where we think he'll have to compromise that honor to get the job done. He manages to come through quite slippery!

It's a brand new PBS show on Masterpiece Theatre on Sunday nights, I think.

jo robertson said...

Oh, Jeanne, I was critical of Cowboys and Aliens, except for the delicious Daniel Craig. I mean, really, cowboys AND aliens???? But I saw a short preview/explanation of the concept on HBO and I'm totally eager to see it. I love westerns (a declining genre) and the Alien movies, and this is really high concept it looks like.

jo robertson said...

That would be a super great Halloween theme, Jeanne. I suspect by then, C&A will be all the rage.

What a clever idea! You always have the best spooky parties!

jo robertson said...

Helen, I think the opinion is leaning toward the GR being the guilty one. I hate to ruffle his feathers (ha, ha), but we may have to call him out!

jo robertson said...

LOL on the Colonel Mustard comment, Miss Molly. I used to play that game constantly. Loved it. It's quite old, isn't it?

jo robertson said...

Joanie said, "The proof is in the pudding...WAIT!!!!"

I'm ROTFLMAO, Joan. Should we dig through the pudding to see if it's in there? Didn't Deanna Raybourne use that ploy in one of her Lady Jane Gray series, something was baked into the Christmas puddings?

jo robertson said...

Jen, rumaki sounds delicious. How did I ever escape the 60's without knowing that????

jo robertson said...

Thanks, Kate! Blame the delay on Amazon. The wheels turn slowly, but I got a notice today that it might be mid-August, so here's crossing fingers.

I'm afraid the chook's gotten quite lazy with all the flying back and forth across the ocean and the continent. I think he just takes first-class and reads all the wonderful books written by Banditas like you!

jo robertson said...

Louisa said, "We Southern girls DO have sticky fingers but it is because of all this heat and humidity!!"

Ah, I know that well, Louisa, having passed my misspent youth in Virginia. And of course I knew YOU'D never steal a book! You're too much the lady.

I think La Campbell has more than one hunky Brit stashed in that bag of hers.

Is the casserole the one made with frozen hashbrowns, cheese, sour cream? That's delish!

jo robertson said...

Anna, you are soooooo naughty!

Daz, thanks! You're definitely in the majority thinking the rooster took the proof.

jo robertson said...

Thanks for the good wishes, Pat.

Pat said, "Who else hasn't surfaced for the festivities?
Someone who is hidden away enjoying
The Watcher!"

You may be onto something, Pat. Which Banditas haven't shown up yet, and might the reason be they have guilty looks on their faces????

donnas said...

Sounds great. Looking forward to reading it.

And Im sure the one that took it is someone you would never ever think of. Those do make the best surprise endings.

Donna MacMeans said...

Oh - it's not moi. I've just been slaving away in the deadline cave, but I do believe I saw some ominous shadows slide by on the walls. However has that book better be wearing a lot of padding as he'll (or she'll) be in a world of hurt if they deprive us of reading THE WATCHER.

jo robertson said...

Hi, DonnaS, thanks for stopping by. Yes, it's often the least suspicious ones who are the guiltiest!

Hi, Donna M., thanks for poking your head out of the cave. I never thought it was you, m'dear!