News from Les . . .

Visit me at Barnes & Noble Mentor this Saturday…

Looking for something to do this weekend? Stop by the Barnes & Noble in Mentor (7900 Mentor Ave) on Sat Oct 26 between 1-3pm. I’ll be signing books, including my latest: Win, Place, or Die. Hope to see you there!

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Little Brown Jug

When I was a kid, all I knew about “Little Brown Jug” was the hit song done by Glenn Miller and his orchestra. Yep, back when there were “dance bands” all over the place, and Miller’s was one of the top favorites. But I learned a new twist on the name. Writing my latest novel, “Win, Place or Die,” about the harness racing industry, I learned from my co-writer, Dan S. Kennedy, who is himself the owner of twenty-some racing horses and drives them himself, too, that “Little Brown Jug” is also a huge two-day harness racing celebration held each year in Delaware, Ohio (just north of Columbus) at the sprawling Delaware County Fairgrounds. The first day, this year Sept. 18th, was the “JugETTE,” featuring many races, all day long, spotlighting fillies. (If you don’t know about horses and haven’t seen many Westerns, a filly, FYI, is a female horse. And in the big log cabin at the fairgrounds which is dedicated to horses, the restrooms are marked “Fillies and Colts.”) The next day,Sept. 19th, featured races with male horses. On Jugette Day, Dan and I, along with his lovely and charming wife Carla, were invited down there to speak… Continue reading

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Big Saturday

A “Win, Place or Die” event: I always particularly enjoy doing book signings at the Barnes & Noble store in Westlake/Crocker Park—especially on a Saturday. There’s always a terrific READING crowd there, and as a writer constantly looking for characters to write about, it’s a people-watching adventure for me. (You never know when YOU are going to show up in a book!) It’s also exhilarating for me to get out on the West Side to sign; many people who come to say hello are real-time friends I don’t get to see often enough. (And if you happen to live in, say, Spokane Washington or Tucumcari, New Mexico—well, it’s not THAT long a drive!) I am looking forward to one particular hug (you know who you are). SO— this coming Saturday, August 31 (wow, where has the summer gone????), I’ll officially be at Barnes and Noble in Crocker Park from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. I’d love to see ALL of you. Hope you’ll buy a book, but if not, just say hello anyway. On Friday morning at 10 a.m., I’ll be on Chris Van Dyke’s radio show on WELL-AM. Saturday morning, at 8:10 a.m., I’ll be talking to Flash Ferenc… Continue reading

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Come Help me Honor Herbie, the Courageous Pitbull, this Sun 8/25

If you recall, last spring I held a contest to “Name the Dog” in my newest book, Win, Place, or Die. The winning name was “Herbie.” Friendship Animal Protective League suggested the name in honor of a very special real dog named Herbie– an abandoned and brutally injured animal who was rescued and lovingly cared for by a Lorain County police officer, Rick Broz. Sadly, Herbie passed away from cancer last March. This weekend, our friends from the Petco Foundation will present a donation to Friendship APL– to reward them for suggesting the winning name and to honor Herbie. Everyone is invited to attend and I hope you’ll join me at the store. Here’s when and where: Date: Sunday August 25 (this Sunday!) Time: 2 pm Place: Petco; 35860 Chester Rd; Avon, Ohio As you know, ending animal abuse is one of my own personal causes and something I feel very strongly about. I couldn’t be more thrilled to have Herbie’s name in my novel and I thank all the participants in the “Name the Dog” contest for making this possible. See you on Sunday!

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Chagrin Falls

I’ve used the charming city of Chagrin Falls OH several times as a setting for scenes from my books. (After all, ya gotta set a scene SOMEWHERE!) For those of you who have never been there, it’s a charming place—scenic, vibrant, beautiful. I urge you to visit—and bring a camera. This Saturday, August 10, I’ll be doing a signing—and chat with the people—at the Fireside Book Shop, right on the main street, from 1-3 p.m. This might be my 25th appearance at the Fireside—I’ve lost count. The Fireside is one of those colorful, delightful old-fashioned bookstores—a BROWSING sort of place and NOT a book super mart. It is literally about 35 steps from what gave the city its name—the waterfalls. And perhaps twenty more steps will find you at the historic Popcorn Shop. I’d bet the farm that you’ll see many people strolling the street licking on ice cream cones they bought at the Popcorn Shop. Also, the superb comedian Tim Conway (back when he was TOM Conway) grew up in Chagrin Falls. Again, within a two-block stretch there are several excellent places to eat, many elegant shops, a lovely fall-side park—the kind of setting that’s devoid of the ubiquitous… Continue reading

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Read my Q&A- Omnimystery News

Check out Omnimystery News and my Q&A about Win, Place, or Die. They’re also giving away copies of the new hardcover, so be sure to enter. Omnimystery News is a great site for news about mystery books, games, television, and films. If you’re not already a regular reader, be sure to check in daily for their up-to-the minute contests, interviews, news, and reviews. Click here to read the interview. Click here to enter the book giveaway.

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Hudson Library Kick-off

I am pleased to report that I’ll be “kicking off” my promotional season for my latest Milan Jacovich novel, “Win, Place or Die,” at the Hudson Library in the “First and Main” complex in Hudson Ohio (just off Ohio Rte 91 and Ohio Rte 303) this coming Saturday, August 3rd, at 3 p.m. It’s my “local library,” just minutes away from where I live (I probably visit this library at least thirty times per year), and two blocks from the Learned Owl Bookstore on Ohio 91. Learned Owl is producing this event. You’ve heard the horse-racing expression, “Win, Place or Show.” Well, the setting for this novel is at a harness racing track—and if the title intrigues you, I’m sure you know why I chose it. (Fictional characters sometimes die in my books.) I’m excited that Dan S. Kennedy, my collaborator on the mystery novel, will be there as well—and we’ll BOTH be signing. Dan is an owner and harness racing driver, and brought me much background material I used when writing the book; he vetted everything I wrote on the subject and pointed out to me where I was completely off base. (“They aren’t called JOCKEYS in harness racing,… Continue reading

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My Guest Post on Mystery Fanfare

If you’re a true mystery lover, you’ll definitely want to check out the web site Mystery Fanfare.  Janet Rudolph (the “Mistress of Mystery”) edits this site and she does a magnificent job. This week, I contributed a guest post titled “Where Are We Now?” in which I talk about the setting of Win, Place, or Die. Check it out and add comments if you like. Click here to read the full post.

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Wanted: Your Review

I had a lot of fun writing Win, Place, or Die especially all the visits I made to the backside of the horse racing track with my co-author Dan S. Kennedy. If you’ve already read the book (and liked it, I hope!) I’d greatly appreciate if you’d post a customer review on either Amazon, Goodreads, or It’s always great to get feedback from readers like you.

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Now available: “Win, Place, or Die”

“Win, Place, or Die,” the 17th Milan Jacovich Mystery, is now available from wherever you buy books. You can read a sample, and get more information about the book and where to buy from the publisher’s web site: Fans in Northeast Ohio can get an autographed copy at the following book signings: Les Roberts will sign Win, Place, or Die Saturday Aug 3 from 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. Hudson Public Library, 96 Library Street, Hudson (Map) Note: Les will be accompanied by co-author Dan S. Kennedy at the event. For more info: 330-653-6658 Les Roberts will sign Win, Place, or Die Saturday Aug 10 from 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Fireside Book Shop, 29 N. Franklin St., Chagrin Falls (Map) For more info: 440-247-4050 More to come… Be sure to check the Events Calendar for an up-to-date list of scheduled events.

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