Location, Location, Location

So all of the Noah books take place in San Diego.  I was raised there and when I step off a plane there at Lindbergh Field, it still feels like home.  I wrote KILLER SWELL when I lived in Colorado and setting a book in San Diego was really a way for me to close my eyes and stay warm during the winter months.  It was easy to write about a place that I knew so well and had great affection for.  I also knew I could write about it and get the feel of the area across to the reader.

WICKED BREAK takes place there, as does LIQUID SMOKE.  Nothing in the story arcs necessitated me having to move the story.

The fourth book is a different story, though.  The events that take place in LS require me to move the setting to a new locale.  (This is me subtly spurring interest and forcing you to say to yourself “But WHAT events???  I MUST KNOW!!!  I BETTER BUY LIQUID SMOKE!!!)  I had originally settled on an international locale, but I never was fully convinced I could sell it to readers.  I didn’t think I could write about it in a realistic way and that worried me.  So I knew I needed to reconsider.

And now I’ve found my new location.

For the last few days, I’ve worked on the book.  From right here:

I’m not exactly sure of all of the details of the story yet.  I don’t outline.  It just sort of shows up in my head.  And I don’t have a title.

But I’ve found my location.

Library Journal And I Are Totally Gonna Make Out

Where have I been?  I don’t know.  Where have YOU been?  Don’t be so nosey, ‘kay?

Anyway, hey, guess what???  We found another great review for LIQUID SMOKE.  And the most amazing part:  I didn’t have to pay them to say all the nice words!

Library Journal says the following:

At the beginning of a bleak February in San Diego, Noah, an independent, surfer PI, is feeling fairly content; alas, his life is in tatters by the 28th. Shelby’s third entry (after Wicked Break) catches you from the first wave, when Noah learns his father, whom he has never met, is on San Quentin’s Death Row. After the woman who told Noah about his father turns up dead, Noah is compelled to pursue a past he’s always chosen to ignore. Soon Noah is crisscrossing San Diego’s inner realms, fighting with local casino thugs and trying not to panic Mexican immigrants in El Centro, who’d just as soon have him go away. Noah’s first-person narrative makes his confusion very personal, and the fear factor ratchets up with each chapter. With plenty of twists and a startling, compelling pace, this mystery will make readers hope Noah finds some justice in the bad set he’s inherited. Hard-boiled but not quite as noir as Don Winslow or Kem Nunn, Shelby’s book will appeal to Robert Crais fans for the sense of place and the lonely world the protagonists occupy.

Whoa.  You had me at “Shelby’s book will appeal to Robert Crais fans.”  Hey, Library Journal.  Come here so I can kiss  you on the mouth.