My ninth original "Monk" novel, MR. MONK IN TROUBLE, is arriving in hardcover in bookstores everywhere today. This book was especially fun for me to write. It gave me a chance to dabble in westerns, something I've always enjoyed reading but, until now, had never tried writing before. The story in MR. MONK IN TROUBLE bounces between the 1850s and present-day, between Monk's ancestor Artemis Monk (an assayer in a California Gold Rush town) and the Adrian Monk that we know and love.
I did a lot more research than I usually do for a Monk book. I took a week-long road trip through some California gold rush towns, took a bunch of pictures, then read a lot of books on the Gold Rush and frontier life in general, and mining techniques in specific. Once I got down to the actual writing, I imposed on the kindness of novelist Richard Wheeler, who has written some of the best westerns ever, to read some early drafts of the western sections to make sure that I wasn't embarrassing myself. I am tremendously flattered that he enjoyed the final result. He left this comment on my blog the other day:
I read Mr. Monk in Trouble virtually nonstop and enjoyed every page. Lee Goldberg knows that the richest humor veers close to pathos, and that is one reason the novel succeeds so well. Who but Monk would hand out wet wipes to Trick-or-Treaters? Natalie is greatly put-upon by her boss, but responds with stoicism, humor–and love. Some of the fun here is that the book takes us into the past, where Monk's ancestor Artemis is an assayer in a mining district and deals with goldrush scalawags and swindlers with the usual Monkian genius. This is much more than entertainment
I am so glad that he liked it and I hope that you will, too. And if you missed MR. MONK AND THE DIRTY COP when it came out last summer, now you can grab the paperback. Here's what some of the reviewers had to say…
"After seven previous tie-in novels, it's safe (if not fairy obvious) to say that nobody knows the world of obsessive-compulsive detective Adrian Monk better than novelist Lee Goldberg. But that doesn't mean he's become lazy or complacent. As MR. MONK AND THE DIRTY COP shows Goldberg is willing to take chances with the firmly established characters, and is still able to provide plenty of laughs and well-crafted entertainment." Alan Cranis, Bookgasm
"Sharp character comedy combined with ingenious and fairly-clued puzzle-spinning. […]Don't miss Lt. Disher's hilariously non-sensical variation on Sherlock Holmes' 'eliminate the impossible' dictum."
—Jon Breen, Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine
I've enjoyed all the Monk novels. Monk is my all-time favorite comic detective and Lee Goldberg has honored him by writing some of the finest tie-novels ever conceived. These have a richness of incident and backstory and place that give them real depth. And for me MR. MONK AND THE DIRTY COP is the best one yet."