Mystery writer to sign books this Saturday |

Mystery writer to sign books this Saturday

Provided to the Tribune

Former businessman and mystery writer Jeff Sherratt will sign copies of his book “One, Two and Even” from 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday at Neighbors Bookstore, 4000 Lake Tahoe Blvd., in the Village Center.

After a successful career owning companies that made and sold food-related products, Sherratt was ready to relax and play with his five grandchildren. But, two things got in his way – politics and his lifelong ambition to write.

The political career didn’t work out very well. He started a political public relations firm but folded it after a short time. “Our clients just weren’t winners,” he says now, looking back on it and shaking his head. “We weren’t good enough to make them look like winners.”

But when he decided to take on his longtime dream of writing a mystery series, things happened much more quickly. On a dare from his daughter, who was tired of hearing him complain that the mysteries he was reading weren’t up to snuff, Sherratt created Jimmy O’Brien, an ex-cop. In the 1970s, when the books are set, O’Brien is a defense attorney who always seems to be in trouble. That trouble stems mostly from his refusal to play ball and just let the powerful have their usual advantage.

In his latest book, “One, Two and Even,” O’Brien is up to his usual level of difficulty. His client, an ex-hooker now married to the “hot dog king of Los Angeles” has a problem. Her husband has been shot in the head and the police think she did it. Then O’Brien’s other client, a homeless man, is killed in police custody and ruled a suicide.

O’Brien’s trouble with politicians and the political system somewhat mirror Sherratt’s experience with politicians, although none of his former clients was ever accused of murder or anything else unsavory.

“We just couldn’t present them as the winning candidate,” Sherratt said. “They weren’t bad people. But the way the system works has always fascinated me and I decided to write about it.”

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