Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Literary Muse: Author Les Roberts pens new thriller

Following 2011’s The Strange Death of Father Candy, readers called, emailed and even stopped author Les Roberts in Giant Eagle to ask when Youngstown assassin Dominick Candiotti would return.

Wet Work author Les Roberts
In Wet Work ($14.95, Gray & Co.), Candiotti makes a violent, sudden shift from hunter to hunted when he questions the purpose of his jobs and attempts to retire, causing his mysterious boss to send paid killers after him. Candiotti travels the country to outrun the assassins, leaving a list of dead in his wake.

“I haven’t hit anybody out of anger since I was 11 years old,” Roberts says, “but I love to write the violent stuff.”

Roberts has published 29 books to date, including 17 novels led by Cleveland private eye Milan Jacovich. “I’m an addict when it comes to writing,” he adds. We check in with the Stow resident to see what other local writers inspire him.

Scott Lax

“It’s style. [He puts] words together beautifully,” Roberts explains. A Chagrin Falls resident, Lax is the author of Vengeance Follows and The Year that Trembled as well as a playwright, biographer and teacher. “I love the fact that really good writers try to use the best possible words.”

Thrity Umrigar

“I couldn’t possibly write the kind of books that she writes. I’m not sure if she could write one of mine,” Roberts says. “... I just think differently than she does, and I admire it tremendously, and I love reading her.” In addition to being a novelist who recently released The Story Hour, Umrigar is an English professor at Case Western Reserve University and a journalist.

Lisa Black

Black, a forensic scientist, writes suspense novels featuring Cleveland forensic scientist Theresa MacLean. “When somebody writes about Cleveland, I like to look at it from their point of view,” Roberts says. “If you read Lisa Black ... her Cleveland is very different than my Cleveland. I like reading somebody else’s feelings and take on something that I feel very strongly about.”

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