Karl Patterson, sometime baseball card dealer without visible means of support, doesn't get along all that well with his father, even though he lives in the guest house of his dad's estate on the Palos Verdes Peninsula near Los Angeles rent free. So he is surprised when Richard Patterson, who is founder and CEO of a successful software company called Dionysus, asks for his help to determine whether the number 2 man of Dionysus, Ned Mackay, has a gambling problem. Perhaps it's because Karl may or may not be a compulsive gambler, himself, depending on whom you ask.
Richard assigns his executive assistant, the exotic and ambitious Arrow, to work with Karl. She appears to have some blood from every ethnic group you can name, and the best of each. She helps Karl connect with Ned, and Karl wangles an invitation to fly with him to San Francisco, which brings up the question of what Ned's relationship is to James Buchanan, a puzzling person who likes puzzles, runs what appears to be an illegal gambling casino, and is CEO of a San Francisco conglomerate that owns a piece of just about everything worth owning. Before Karl can make any progress, Ned is found dead in San Francisco with cocaine in his car.
Karl is questioned by the San Francisco police, and now finds himself trying to determine what happened to Ned, and what effect this will have on his father and Dionysus. Questions about James remain, because he seems to want to gain control of Dionysus, and may help Karl buy an expensive baseball card.
Events keep Karl involved long after his father wants him out. Before he's through, he'll be a frequent flyer between L.A. and San Francisco, with sidetrips to Scotland and England. He will have to learn how to work with Arrow, get along with Jacie, Richard's young wife, try to improve his relationship with his father, and--if he wants to survive--watch his back.
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About the Author
After spending more than a quarter of a century as a pioneer in the computer industry, Alan Cook is well into his second career as a writer. PICTURELAND The second Matthew and Mason adventure finds the boys going into a picture in their family room with the help of Amy, a girl in the picture. The dystopian world they find there with everyone's movements tracked, leads the three to attempt to bring personal freedom to the inhabitants at great risk to themselves. DANCING WITH BULLS In Alan's first children's book, Matthew and Mason are on vacation on the Greek island of Crete when they are whisked back in time 4,000 to the Minoan civilization at Knossos Palace. Captured, they escape death by becoming bull dancers on a team with other slaves. Beautifully illustrated by Janelle Carbajal. FOOL ME TWICE--CAROL GOLDEN NO. 6 Carol Golden is asked to help Peter Griffenham recover a chunk of money he's lost in a scam, but he doesn't want to go to the police, and by the time she gets involved the prime suspect, a dazzling redhead named Amy, has disappeared along with the money. Or has she? Perhaps that was only the first chapter, to be followed by a much larger scam. Can Carol help prevent chapter two? GOOD TO THE LAST DEATH--CAROL GOLDEN NO. 5 When Carol Golden's husband, Rigo, disappears, she not only has to look for him, but elude the FBI at the same time, because there is evidence that she was involved in his disappearance. She doggedly follows a faint trail, keeping her location a secret from everybody except her friend, Jennifer, a spy-in-training, who takes time off from her top-secret job to help Carol. HIT THAT BLOT--CAROL GOLDEN NO. 4 The fourth Carol Golden novel takes Carol into the exciting and dangerous world of tournament backgammon. She listens to a caller who calls himself Danny on the crisis hotline Carol volunteers for say he is afraid he'll be murdered. A backgammon player, herself, Carol, disobeys the hotline rules and sets out to find and help Danny. She needs all her experience with spies and detective work to survive this adventure. DANGEROUS WIND--CAROL GOLDEN NO. 3 In the third Carol Golden novel, Carol is abducted by a shady government group and required to help find an old boyfriend of hers she doesn't remember (because of her amnesia) who is trying to bring about the "downfall of the western world." She will travel to all seven continents before she can figure out what's going on. RELATIVELY DEAD--CAROL GOLDEN NO. 2 Having recovered her identity (lost in FORGET TO REMEMBER) if not her memory, Carol Golden seeks out some of her cousins in the second Carol Golden novel, only to find out they appear to be targeted for murder. While trying to figure out what's going on, Carol encounters the Grandparent Scam and a Ponzi Scheme, and finds out that she may be one of the targets of the murderer. FORGET TO REMEMBER--CAROL GOLDEN NO. 1 Carol Golden isn't her real name. She doesn't remember her real name or anything that happened before she was found, naked and unconscious, in a Dumpster on the beautiful Palos Verdes Peninsula in Southern California. After some initial medical assistance, government at all levels declares her a non-person. She can't work because she doesn't have a Social Security number, which she can't get because she doesn't have a birth certificate. She can't even legally drive a car or fly on an airplane. This is the first Carol Golden novel. Alan's Lillian Morgan mysteries, CATCH A FALLING KNIFE and THIRTEEN DIAMONDS, explore the secrets of retirement communities. They feature Lillian, a retired mathematics professor from North Carolina, who is smart, opinionated, and skeptical of authority. She loves to solve puzzles, even when they involve murder. RUN INTO TROUBLE Silver Quill Award from American Authors Association and named Best Pacific West Book by Reader Views. Drake and Melody are teamed up to run a race along the California Coast for a prize of a million dollars—in 1969 when a million is worth something. Neither knows the other is in the race before it starts. They once did undercover work together in England, but this information is supposed to be top secret. The nine other pairs of runners entered in the race are world-class marathoners, including a winner of the Boston Marathon. If this competition isn’t enough, somebody tries to knock Drake out of the race before it begins. But Drake and Melody also receive threats calculated to keep them from dropping out. What’s going on? The stakes increase when startling events produce fatalities and impact the race, leading them to ask whether the Cold War with the USSR is about to heat up. HONEYMOON FOR THREE--GARY BLANCHARD NO. 2 Silver Quill Award from American Authors Association and named Best Mountain West Book by Reader Views. Suspense takes a thrill ride. It is 1964, 10 years after Gary Blanchard’s high school adventures in The Hayloft. He and his love, Penny, are going on the trip of their lives, and, oh yes, they’re getting married along the way. What they don’t know is that they’re being stalked by Alfred, a high school classmate of Penny who has a bellybutton fetish. The suspense crackles amid some of the most scenic spots in the western United States, including Lake Tahoe, Reno, Crater Lake, Seattle, and in Glacier, Yellowstone, and Grand Teton National Parks, as well as the redwood trees and rocky cliffs of the northern California coast. THE HAYLOFT--GARY BLANCHARD NO. 1 This 1950s mystery, takes us back to bobby sox, slow dancing, bomb shelters—and murder. Within two weeks after starting his senior year of high school in the 1950s, Gary Blanchard finds himself kicked out of one school and attending another—the school where his cousin, Ralph, mysteriously died six months before. Ralph’s death was labeled an accident, but when Gary talks to people about it, he gets suspicious. Did Ralph fall from the auditorium balcony, or was he pushed? Had he found a diamond necklace, talked about by cousins newly arrived from England, that was supposedly stolen from Dutch royalty by a common ancestor and lost for generations? What about the principal with an abnormal liking for boys? And are Ralph’s ex-girlfriends telling everything they know? HOTLINE TO MURDER, his California mystery, takes place at a listening hotline in beautiful Bonita Beach, California. Tony Schmidt and Shahla Lawton don't know what they're getting into when they sign up as volunteer listeners. But when Shahla's best friend is murdered, it's too late for them to back out. They suspect that one of the hotline's inappropriate callers may be the murderer, and they know more about them than the police do. ACES AND KNAVES is a California mystery for gamblers and baseball card collectors. Karl Patterson deals in baseball cards and may be a compulsive gambler, so he's surprised when his father, Richard, CEO of a software company, engages him to check up on the activities of his second in command. It doesn't hurt that Richard assigns his executive assistant, Arrow, an exotic and ambitious young woman, to help Karl, but none of them expects to get involved in murder. FREEDOM'S LIGHT contains quotations from 38 of history's champions of freedom, from Aristotle to Zlata Filipovic, from George Washington to Martin Luther King, Jr. Included are Jefferson, Adams, Franklin, Anne Frank and many more. Alan splits his time between writing and walking, another passion. His inspirational book, WALKING THE WORLD: MEMORIES AND ADVENTURES, has information and adventure in equal parts. It has been named one of the Top 10 Walking Memoirs and Tales of Long Walks by the walking website, Walking.About.Com. Alan lives with his wife, Bonny, on a hill in Southern California.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book is free, but it's a great read, especially if you like the golden state. Karl Patterson may have grown up with a silver spoon in his mouth (how does he eat?) but he's still trying to find his place in the world. His father hires him as a consultant for the wrong reasons, and he ends up trying to solve a murder while solving math puzzles in order to gain access to an illegal gambling casino in San Francisco. Are you following me so far? And don't forget the young woman named Arrow (I've heard worse names) who works for dad and would be attractive to any young dude. Takes place in Los Angeles and San Francisco, two of my favorite places in the world. An early novel by Alan Cook, author of the Carol Golden amnesia series.