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Meet the Author: Martin Smith

September 20, 2016 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm


Pittsburgh native and former staffer at the  Pittsburgh Press, Martin Smith, will be at the shop on September 20th from 6PM – 8PM to chat with customers and sign copies of his new book, COMBUSTION.

Stop on by and join us for a drink during this casual book signing event. Martin will not give a traditional author talk, but will instead be on hand to speak directly with shop visitors and sign copies of his book.

The dry season has hit the Inland Empire of California, depleting the ponds and revealing the muddy grave of Paul Dwyer. From his mansion on the hill, Dwyer lorded over Los Colmas, a small town that he aspired to make big by building mansions for wealthy LA commuters. Some viewed him as a savior, providing construction jobs for locals. Others believed he was ruining their beautiful, close-knit town. But who was angry enough to murder him?

Local cop Ron Starke is overwhelmed by the list of suspects and plagued by a difficult captain who is demanding results. Starke investigates Paul Dwyer’s dirty money and handshake deals gone wrong, but the name at the top of the suspect list is the most intriguing, and chilling.

The developer wasn’t the only one with secrets; his widow Shelby has kept her own for decades, none more harrowing than the horrific abuse she and her daughter endured at the hands of Dwyer.  And none more volatile than what she knows but must hide about Paul’s murder.

As the season’s wildfires intensify to historic levels and surge towards Los Colmas, Starke must discover who killed Dwyer before all the evidence burns and the whole town is erased.

The 60-year-old veteran journalist and magazine editor has won more than fifty newspaper and magazine writing awards, and his crime novels have been nominated for three of the publishing industry’s most prestigious honors, including the Edgar Award, the Anthony Award, and the Barry Award. A former senior editor of the Los Angeles Times Magazine, Martin’s 2012 nonfiction book, “The Wild Duck Chase,” about the Federal Duck Stamp Contest and the strange and wonderful world of competitive duck painting, inspired Brian Golden Davis’ documentary film “The Million Dollar Duck,” which won both the Jury and Audience awards at the 2016 Slamdance Film Festival.



September 20, 2016
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Event Category:


Mystery Lovers Bookshop
(412) 828-4877


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Oakmont, PA 15139 United States
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