Mike Faricy is the award winning author of mystery suspense thrillers woven together with a rich strain of humor and even some romance. He and his wife live in Saint Paul, Minnesota and Dublin, Ireland.
His entertaining tales are populated with the sort of quirky, oddball characters we’d all like to know more about, but wisely prefer to keep at a distance. They serve not so much as examples as they do warnings to the rest of us. None of his characters will be saving the world from terrorism, international banking conspiracies or coups to topple the government. Rather, they’re individuals inhabiting a world just below the surface of polite society. The difficulties they find themselves in are usually due to their own bad decisions, but then, bad decisions make for interesting tales.
All of his books are stand alone, read them in any order you wish. Russian Roulette introduces the bizarrely devilish Devlin Haskell as a PI with a foot on both sides of the law. Dev’s adventures continue in Mr. Softee and the soon to be released Bite Me. Mike is currently working on his latest top secret project. He graduated High School from St. Thomas Academy and earned a BA in history from St. Norbert College.
His latest book is the crime fiction, Bombshell.
Hi, Thanks for having me, it’s great to be here. Bombshell was a story I’ve wanted to write for a while. The story takes place in the world of women’s roller derby. A while ago I was talking with some women who are involved with our local roller derby team. The more I learned the more I wanted to know. I was really intrigued by their names, the outfits they wear, their fanatic fan base. One of the many things I learned is that the teams do quite a bit of fund raising for local charity. Anyway, a women’s roller derby team seemed like the perfect venue for my Dev Haskell character. Dev is a wise cracking, back slapping Private Investigator who loves the ladies and seems to be off just a half beat when it comes to certain common sense aspects of life. I began writing and immediately the thing just started to come together and more or less wrote itself.
What was the experience like writing Bombshell?
As I said it more or less wrote itself. I just sort of sat at the keyboard and typed as the characters told me the story. At base it’s a tale of rivalry and petty jealousy that gets way out of hand. Of course there are a few plot twists and turns along the way, but in all honesty the story just sort of naturally developed. Of course there’s a bit of a surprise ending that brings everything full circle. Although not done intentionally I suddenly look back and in all the Dev Haskell novels, Bombshell is the fourth, a woman ends up pulling Dev’s feet from the fire.
How did you come up with the title?
To tell you the truth I didn’t. The local roller derby team in the book is called the Bombshells. A friend of mine was doing a beta read, I think I had the manuscript labeled ‘working title’ or something equally clever. She phoned me and said you idiot, the title has to be Bombshell, it seems so obvious. Actually once she said it all of a sudden it was pretty obvious, even to a slow guy like me. Another friend in Miami, Wendy Doscher-Smith is a photographer and I asked her if she had any ideas for a cover shot. As luck would have it she had a girlfriend who skated for Miami’s roller derby team so the cover shot for Bombshell is really a roller derby star, Pinky Gomez and she really skates with Miami’s Vice City Rollers. The description of a black hot pants uniform with black and pink striped stockings pulled up over pink fishnet hose in Bombshell is based on Pinky’s actual Vice City Rollers uniform.
Can you tell us more about your main character, Dev Haskell?
As I mentioned before, Dev has an eye for the ladies so consider that fair warning. At base Dev is really a pretty good hearted guy, he would certainly be a fun date, but you most likely wouldn’t tell your girlfriends and you probably wouldn’t want him to meet your folks. He has the best of intentions most of the time, but things seem to have a way of going in a slightly different direction whenever he is involved. He’s a back slapping, wise cracking guy who knows a lot of the wrong sort of folks. He has some good pals on our local police force as well as some officials who think the city of St. Paul would be a much better place were he somewhere else, like behind bars for instance. He runs in a sort of social pool that’s a foot or two below the surface of polite society. He’s been known to make more than one bad decision. He seems to have a knack for having just one more for the road when in fact he should just go home. He’s woken up in his share of strange bedrooms. Women find him interesting, attractive, dangerous, fun, even sexy, but at some point they all seem to be driven to a state of pure frustration, finally throw up their hands and dump him. There is a long list of women who have told him something along the lines of “don’t call me, ever again”. He can be tenacious as well as completely worthless. He’s the sort of person you’d want to keep tabs on just because it would be interesting to learn what he’s been up to, but you wouldn’t want to get too close. That said, if you had a problem, you could call him at three in the morning and he’d be there for you.
What are his strengths and what are his weaknesses?
His strengths, well he’s tenacious, on occasion he can make a lucky guess. He has some good friends in important places. He’s attractive, can be fun and will work hard if he really, really has to. As far as weaknesses go, where to start. He loves beer, some wines and a stiff drink, usually bourbon or whiskey on ice. If you’re looking for someone to drink Cosmopolitans or Singapore Slings with Dev is not the guy. He has a fondness for ladies and more than once he’s been known to end up with the wrong sort of woman. He is not very computer literate, hates to text, hates rap music and hip hop. Although he is not a fan of dancing he likes country western and some golden oldies stuff. He can be loyal to a fault, able to overlook major short comings in just about any individual and is far from style conscious. He knows next to nothing about cars except that they need gas and oil and he always seems to be driving some sort of desperate automobile just about on its last legs. He has a temper which he usually keeps in check and he has a soft spot for the underdog, especially if it’s female. I think you could sum up Dev’s method of operation as Ready, Fire, Aim.
Are there any supporting characters we need to know about?
There are a few who reoccur in the Dev Haskell series. A vice squad detective, Aaron LaZelle is a childhood pal of Dev’s and he occasionally dispenses sage advice, which Dev almost always ignores. There’s another detective, Norris Manning, he’s wound a little too tight, over worked and under paid might be an apt description. It’s not that he has an in for Dev, but Manning does things by the book and he would love to see the rest of the world operate that way. Not only has Dev never opened the book, he can’t even find it. Heidi Bauer, she and Dev have a purely physical, on-again–off-again relationship. Dev calls her for bail money, but she’s just about had it with that routine. Sunny Einer is a computer geek who rolls her eyes and occasionally helps Dev although there is absolutely no romantic involvement between them. Not that Dev wouldn’t go for it, but Sunny has the bar set way above the likes of Dev. Louie Laufen is Dev’s attorney, tough to say which one is more screwed up, Dev or Louie.
Can you open to page 25 and tell us what’s happening?
Okay, let’s see, here we go, on page 25 it’s fairly late at night and Dev has just arrived at the condo of a woman he recently met named Justine. She skates for the local roller derby team, the Bombshells. She is walking into the kitchen to get him a beer and he has stopped to admire a roller derby painting hanging in her hallway. It turns out she is the subject of the painting. A few beers later they’re sitting on her couch discussing a potential problem with a visiting English team and a stalker who has been sending severed human fingers to Harlotte Davidson, the team star;
A couple of table lamps with stain glass dragon flies dimly lit the room. Light from the lamp reflected off the glazed fireplace tiles.
“You think there’ll be any trouble?” she asked
“You mean with Harlotte Davidson and the fingers?”
“No, I mean because I’m almost out of beer, yes with Harlotte Davidson and the fingers.”
What about page 65?
Okay, here’s the background. In a misunderstood event, Dev has been arrested and charged with assaulting one of the roller derby stars outside the woman’s locker room. In actuality she attacked him, but in an attempt to get away he pushed her and she fell, fortunately she wasn’t hurt, but none-the-less Dev was arrested and the story ran in the morning paper the following day. He’s out on bail and is calling four different police departments around the country where there has been an incident regarding the same roller derby team. Dev is posing as a police officer on the phone and is first talking with a Denver detective about an incident that occurred out there two days earlier;
“Some jackass, just like the jackass attacked that little girl up in St. Paul last night. My guess, check him out, he certainly sounded stupid enough.”
“Thanks, we’re doing that,” I said.
“Look, I get a chance I’ll make some calls, see if they got anything, but with the budget cuts and all…”
Things didn’t seem to go a whole lot better in Chicago. I spoke with a Sergeant Anthony Howe. He had a decided south side Chicago accent.
“St. Paul, hunh, something about that sitting on my desk when I came in this morning. You guys nail that flake been sending fingers to them English broads?”
“We’re working on it, that’s what I wanted to talk to you about.”
“You ask me it’s that idiot assaulted one of those girls up there last night. Let me question him for about five minutes, I’ll get ya answers, the answers ya want. Still got him locked up? Or did he get all lawyered up and he’s out on the street? Probably casing some grade school as we speak. I tell ya, the court system in this…”
You can see Dev has an uphill battle on his hands. Not to mention the assault charge….
Now that Bombshell has been published, what’s your next project?
My next project is another Dev Haskell novel, Tutti Frutti. I’m hoping to have that released right around the first of the year. I also wrote a novella for the Fight Card series. It’s a series of short stories all written under the pseudonym Jack Tunney. These are 50’s noir boxing tales, a little different than my usual genre but a lot of fun. My contribution is entitled Irish Dukes, it takes place in Dublin and will be released in early November. Each author is left a lot of leeway provided the protagonist comes from St. Vincent’s Asylum for Boys in Chicago where he learned life’s lessons through boxing from Father Tim. After the first of the year I’ve two more Dev Haskell tales I’m working on.
Do you have anything you’d like to tell our readers?
Yes, please take a moment and check out Bombshell (http://amzn.to/Uyc5eY) on Amazon. Enjoy the read and don’t forget to tell 2-300 of your closest friends. You can connect with me via my face book pages; Mike Faricy or Mike Faricy Books. Be sure to check out the Dev Haskell face book page, there’s always a lot of fun things happening there. My website is www.mikefaricy.com. You can follow me on twitter, @mikefaricybooks or feel free to just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for taking the time to check me out and enjoy Bombshell, all the very best, Mike.