by Lorie Lewis Ham
In this next installment of our series On The Road To Left Coast Crime 2012, we have one of our favorites, Lee Goldberg. He’s joining us to talk about his new book, Mr. Monk On Patrol, and about Left Coast. We also have a review of the book & a details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy!
Mr. Monk On Patrol by Lee Goldberg
Mr. Monk on Patrol takes Monk and Natalie all the way to Summit, New Jersey where Randy Disher is Chief of Police and acting Mayor. Summit has had a rash of corruption that has left Randy in charge and short staffed so Sharona, who is now Randy’s wife (taking me some time to get used to that one lol), contacts them for help. At first Monk is very hesitant to go, but Sharona manages to convince him.
Monk and Natalie go to Summit to help deal with what they expect will be simple small town crimes which would be a piece of cake for Monk, however when a rash of burglaries turns into murder things become way more serious than expected and before it’s over both Monk and Natalie end up as real police officers.
It was so nice to spend some time with Randy and Sharona again—I miss them both since they got together and moved away at the end of the TV series. It was also nice to see how Monk has continued to grow and get healthier since learning who killed his wife. Now of course he’s still the same old, quirky, OCD, afraid of almost everything person that we all know and love, but he’s learning to deal much better with life’s challenges and his fears than we’ve ever seen before. In this book, he comes face to face with one of his ultimate fears and he may even find himself falling in love again. Natalie also finds herself enjoying being in uniform and rising to a new challenge.
Monk on Patrol has everything we love about Monk and as always Lee Goldberg knows exactly how to bring these characters to life and craft a good mystery! And again, it was so nice to spend some time with Randy and Sharona. My only complaint is that Lee left us with a cliffhanger—not about the crime, but about the future for Monk and Natalie! There had better be a new book soon!
This book is extra special to us here at KRL because we are quoted on the back cover!
Interview with Lee Goldberg:
Lorie: How did you come up with the idea for Monk on Patrol?
Lee: It seemed like a natural outgrowth of where Natalie’s character was heading after Mr. Monk On The Couch. And I always like to get Monk and Natalie out of SF every other book to keep things lively.
Lorie: Why did you decide to bring back Randy and Sharona? (love that you did)
Lee:After the series finale of Monk, I think all the fans were curious how Randy and Sharona were doing, and I thought this would be a good opportunity to find out. Besides, Randy has been missing from the last two Monk books and I missed him.
Lorie: What kind of research did you have to do?
Lee:Not much. I’ve been to Summit (which was where the production offices of Monk were) and I know a lot of cops. My research was mostly about arcane stuff relating to the clues and to all the uses of poop in products (salad dressing, shampoo, stationary, gunpowder etc.) for a key subplot.
Lorie: What’s up next for Monk?
Lee:Mr. Monk Is A Mess picks up right where Mr. Monk On Patrol leaves off. To say more would ruin some big surprises. I am now writing my final Monk book, Mr. Monk Gets Even and wrap up the arcs I created over the last 14 novels. After that, the series may continue with a different writer, I really don’t know for sure.
Lorie: I’m sad to hear that. I notice you are going to this year’s LCC so here are a few LCC related questions:
How many have you been to?
Lee:I have no idea. I started going in 1995…So I’ve been to the cons in Boulder, Seattle, El Paso, Pasadena, Scottsdale, Hawaii, Los Angeles, and Monterey, to name a few that come to mind. I skipped the ones in Alaska and the UK.
Lorie: What tips would you give someone attending their first LCC?
Lee:If you’re an author, be yourself and not a used car salesmen. There’s nothing more irritating than an author who is constantly promoting himself and his work and can’t have a simple conversation. If you’re a fan, don’t hesitate to go up and say hello to your favorite authors. Most of them are very nice, approachable, and have actually bathed in the last couple of days.
Lorie: What do you like best of LCC?
Lee:The chance to meet readers and to “talk shop” with fellow authors. I also like buying vintage paperbacks in the dealer’s room (though the rooms have been shrinking over the years).
To enter to win a copy of Mr. Monk On Patrol, simply email KRL at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Patrol”, or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen February 25, 2012. U.S. residents only.
Check out our other On The Road to Left Coast 2012 interviews with mystery author Cindy Sample & L.F. Crawford, and our J. Michael Orenduff, along with an article on Left Coast Crime‘s past and present.
You can also learn more about Lee and his writing by checking out an earlier interview with him here at KRL.
If you love mysteries, why not check out Left Coast Crime: Mystery Conference in Sacramento, March 29-April 1, 2012. Registration is only $225 & day passes can be purchased for $75 for Friday and Saturday panel sessions. Registration information can be found at the conventionwebsite, or by sending an email to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.