I invited my friend, bestselling author Paul Levine, to write a guest blog about his new book, “State vs. Lassiter,” tenth in his acclaimed series about the former linebacker who became a night school Miami lawyer of dubious ethics. Professing to be too lazy to do a blog item, Paul instead interviewed his protagonist with predictably hilarious results.
Paul: You look like you’re still in shape to play for the Miami Dolphins. How do you do it?
Jake: Being fictional helps. By the way, you look like pelican crap.
Paul: You’re just peeved because I got you indicted for murder in the new book.
Jake: I don’t get “peeved.” I get pissed, and when I do, someone gets decked.
Paul: Let me ask you a tough question.
Jake: Take your best shot, scribbler.
Paul: You’ve been called many things. “Shyster.” “Mouthpiece.” “Shark.”
Jake: Careful, pal. They don’t call me a shark for my ability to swim.
Paul: But murderer?
Jake: I’m not bad. You just write me that way.
Paul: Okay, in “State vs. Lassiter,” your client’s money goes missing…
Jake: I never stole from a client, bribed a judge, or threatened a witness, and until this bum rap, the only time I was arrested, it was a case of mistaken identity.
Paul: How’s that?
Jake: I didn’t know the guy I hit was a cop.
Paul: Okay, at the start of the book, you’re having an affair with a beautiful woman who also happens to be your banker.
Jake: So sue me. Women think I look like a young Harrison Ford.
Paul: One keystroke, I’ll turn you into an old Henry Ford. You and your lady are having a fancy dinner on Miami Beach. She threatens to turn you in for skimming client funds, and next thing we know, she’s dead…in your hotel suite at the Fontainebleau.
Jake: Is there a question in there, counselor?
Paul: What happened?
Jake: I take the Fifth. Every heard of it?
Paul: You go on trial for murder.
Jake: Hold your horses. No spoilers!
Paul: “Hold your horses?” What are you, an extra in “Gunsmoke?”
Jake: Sorry if I’m not hip enough for you, scribbler. You won’t find my mug on Facebook. I don’t have a life coach, an aroma therapist, or a yoga instructor, and I don’t do Pilates.
Paul: So you’re not trendy. You’re not a Yuppie.
Jake: I’m a carnivore among vegans, a brew and burger guy in a Chardonnay and paté world.
Paul: You’re a throwback, then?
Jake: If that’s what you call someone with old friends, old habits, and old values.
Paul: May I quote one of the five-star reviews on Amazon.com?
Jake: Do I have a choice?
Paul: “Blend the wit of Carl Hiaasen with the dialogue of Elmore Leonard and throw in John Grisham’s courtroom skills, and you have Jake Lassiter.”
Jake: Makes me wish one of those guys was writing me.
Paul: Bring us up to date. You first appeared in “To Speak for the Dead” in 1990.
Jake: Yeah, and they made a TV movie a few years later with Gerald McRaney. My ass is better looking than him.
Paul: Who should play you in a movie?
Jake: Easy. The Duke.
Paul: John Wayne? You’re kidding.
Jake: “I won’t be wronged, I won’t be insulted, and I won’t be laid a hand on.” Sort of sums it up, don’t it?
Paul: “State vs. Lassiter” is your tenth book. But you’re facing life in prison. Is this the end?
Jake: Not entirely up to me, is it scribbler?
Paul: I’m thinking it’s time you hang up your shingle, no matter what happens in the trial.
Jake: (Reaches across the table and pops Paul with a left jab. Ka-pow!).
Paul: Ouch! What the hell!
Jake: What’s the matter, noodle neck? You don’t think I’d be a good jailhouse lawyer?
(“State vs. Lassiter” is available in paperback at Amazon and Barnes & Noble and as an e-book exclusively at Amazon Kindle. More information on Paul Levine’s Website.)
3 thoughts on “Paul Levine Grills Jake Lassiter, Gets Punched Out”
i loved that interview. so funny. cant wait to read the book and more inthe series. i had reAD one of them. i have been addicted to the mystery guild and they dont have paul levine and so i have been out of the loop.
A fun interview for one of the best of the Lassiter series. They just keep getting better.
OMG, this was so damned funny. I laughed out loud with this one: “Jake: Makes me wish one of those guys was writing me.” Jake…you need to re-think that comment, my good friend.
I love Jake and he has such a great sense of humor. I started the first one ended up reading them all pretty close to back to back. Couldn’t help myself. Jake was like a magnet drawing me back. Hope he’s in the same law offices with those funny characters he bartered with.
The entire series is just so much fun to read.
And Paul, my friend, if Jake doesn’t come back with another book for devoted readers such as myself, then he may make a deal (he’s a lawyer, with valid degree, we know that) to get Hiaseen to scrib another one. So think carefully about dumping him in some dank and dark cell in Raiford.
My favorite guy of all time is Travis McGee but must admit that Jake Lassiter is right behind him and may be catching up!
Favorite saying: “Keep Calm–Being Obsessed Over Fictional Guys Isn’t Weird…Is It?” NO! NO! and NO!