Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Welcome Readers to the 5th day of our MYSTERY WE WRITE HOLIDAY BLOG TOUR. Today I'm delighted to present John M. Daniel as my guest writer. His stories have appeared in dozens of  literary magazines. His thirteen published books include four mysteries: PLAY MELANCHOLY BABY, THE POET'S FUNERAL, VANITY FIRE  and his latest BEHIND THE REDWOOD DOOR, recently published by Oak Tree Press.

John M. Daniel

A true Renaissance man, John has worked as a bookseller, a free-lance writer, an editor, an entertainer, a model, an innkeeper, and a teacher. He and his wife, Susan, live in Humbolt County, California, where they are small-press book publishers. Today he's going to do a bit of bragging about the birth of his latest brainchild, BEHIND THE REDWOOD DOOR.


By John Daniel

As I write this post, long before it will show up on Jackie’s blog, I have just received a first look at the cover of my new book, Behind the Redwood Door, which will be published in November. By the time you read this post, the book will be born, and I’ll be handing out cigars.

I am knocked out by that cover! I knew there were a few (all right, more than a few) scary moments in the novel, but I could never have imagined such an ingenious way to represent threat! Those fierce red eyes glowing and glowering in the treetops! I thank the artist for turning a quiet, peaceful forest into a nightmare. Be afraid…

The unfolding story is about a feud between the gentle Websters and the Connollys, who have always run Jefferson City and County with fists of iron. The Connollys are the dark side, and a crime writer must not be afraid of the dark. We must face our monsters. In Behind the Redwood Door, I (thanks to Guy Mallon, my intrepid shrimp of a bibliophile sleuth) face the bullies, not only in the present timeline—in which a teenager is hazed and a good man is stabbed to death behind the Redwood Door saloon—but in the past, when the Connollys landed on the rocky redwood cost of northern California and started pushing people around, generation after generation.

I admit it: I am afraid of bullies. They’re monsters. They’re our worst enemy. When you read Behind the Redwood Door, you’ll probably face some of the unwelcome visitors to your own nightmares. But then you’ll cheer when the bullies are…oops, I’ll stop there and skip the spoilers.

Anyway I want you to know, in light of the dark forest on the cover, that this novel is also romantic, light-hearted, even funny at times, if I do say myself. It’s about sweet, friendly, kind-hearted people…mostly. As with all of my crime novels, Behind the Redwood Door is about love as much as it’s about death. It’s just that this time the duel between love and death is turned up to nine.

Here’s my newborn monster. Ain’t he adorable?

I love this line, John:

'...the duel between love and death is turned up to nine.'

Your baby isn't a monster at all, but complicated and fascinating. I can hardly wait to download my copy, or perhaps I'll call your 1-800 number and order a signed copy.
Behind the Redwood Door is sold by Amazon and Barnes & Noble. It can be ordered by your local independent bookseller, or bought directly from the publisher at http://www.oaktreebooks.com/. For an autographed copy, call John at 1-800-662-8351.

Thanks John for such an interesting article, and thanks to my readers for stopping by. Be sure and leave a comment on today’s post and your name will go into a drawing for FREE BOOKS. I’m giving away a signed copy of my cozy mystery THE INCONVENIENT CORPSE and another signed copy of the anthology THE STATEHOOD FOXY HENS AND MURDER MOST FOWL containing my novella The Spinster, the Pig and the Orphan. The book celebrates a Land Run in 1889 Guthrie, Oklahoma Territory.
There will be others books given away by each of our authors, so be sure and visit and comment on each blog.
Hugs to all,



Susan Shay said...

Sounds like a great read! I hope I don't overload my Kindle with all the wonderful books out there right now.
Thanks for sharing John with us, Jackie!
I wonder if he'll be in Oklahoma any time so he can speak at RWI?
Just asking!

john M. Daniel said...

Susan, thanks for your comment, and for the encouragement. Behind the Redwood Door isn't on Kindle yet, but I'm told it will be soon. I don't have plans to be in Oklahoma anytime soon, but who knows...?

Jackie King said...

Lady Susan, Thanks a million for stopping by. It would be fabulous to have John speak to us. He's a nationally known speaker and teacher as well as an author.

John, Welcome to my humble blog-home. I'm delighted you're my guest.

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

As always, a great post, John. And yes, I've got to download Behind a Redwood Door too.

Marilyn said...

Love the cover! It's very compelling. The story sounds it, too. Once it's available on Kindle, I see it in my future . . .

Marja McGraw said...

With each blog I've read, I've gone from "I should read this" to "Gotta read this". Great cover, by the way.

Timothy Hallinan said...

You convinced me, John, but then I'd already ordered it. And it is a great cover.

john M. Daniel said...

Thanks, everybody. Now as I reread the post, I worry that it sounds too much like bragging, as if I had anything to do with the cover design. All of the credit for that goes to Kurt Bredt.

Patricia Gligor said...

It is a beautiful cover, John!
Well, tonight's the night that I finish reading "Behind the Redwood Door" and get to find out whodunnit. I have my theories, mind you, but I'm eager to see if I'm right.

Jackie King said...

Marilyn Meredith, Timothy and Marja, Thanks for stopping by.

John, You're a delightful guest and I'm so happy you're the star of my blog, today.

Jackie King said...

Marilyn, You shy creature, you. I'm so glad to see your comment.

Jackie King said...

Patricia, Thanks for stopping by. Your name, along with each of the other guest's names, will go into my black fedora tonight. That gives you a chance toward winning one of the books I'm giving away at the end of the Tour.

Alice Duncan said...

Wonderful post, John! And I love the cover of your book. Must add it to my TBR mountain, which is quickly filling the house.

john M. Daniel said...

Thanks again, folks. This is a wonderful gang of friends.

M.M. Gornell said...

Every time I read about all the things you've done, John, I am impressed what a "Renaissance" man you actually are. Bravo!


Earl Staggs said...

John, both your cover and your plot description are irresistable, as the comments from the others here indicate. You can add me to the list of those anxious to read it.

Jackie King said...

John, You've been a charming guest, and I thank you for entertaining us with your article and comments.