Other Books

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Except for The Strange Death of Father Candy and We’ll Always Have Cleveland, these books out of print. Sometimes, though, you can find used copies at Amazon.com.

The Strange Death of Father Candy

Long-estranged from his family, Vietnam veteran Dominick Candiotti returns home to Youngstown—1985—to attend the funeral of his brother, Richard, a young priest beloved by the whole city and known as “Father Candy.”

The Candiottis were close to the ruling mob clan in Youngstown. Dominick’s sister is a bad-tempered nag, his older brother is a corruptible police lieutenant—but all are shattered by the death of eldest brother Richard

Dominick refuses to believe the verdit that Father Candy’s death was a suicide, and sets out to find the truth, revealing secrets, rekindling his love for an old flame, and making him face brutality and violence, walking the tightrope between love and hatred.

  • Publisher: St. Martin’s Publishing Group
  • Publication Year: 2011
  • Pages: 288

We’ll Always Have Cleveland

A personal, nonfiction memoir about my 15 years in my adopted home town, Cleveland. It’s not an autobiography or a kiss-and-tell book, but it’s all about how Cleveland welcomed me, changed me, and turned me into a very different writer. Lots about family, friends—and a few enemies, too.

“You know it’s true love as you listen to Les talk … he praises the people—their warmth and sincerity, but doesn’t flinch from the warts and wens to be found here, either … first and foremost, Les Roberts is a writer, and a damned good one. Let his words show you his town … ” (Kelly Ferjutz, coolcleveland.com)

  • Publisher: Gray & Company (2006)
  • Pages: 192

A Carol for Cleveland

In the midst of one of late twentieth century America’s worst recessions, Ed Podolak, an unemployed worker from western Pennsylvania, winds up in Cleveland looking for a job. It’s Christmas Eve, and all he has to his name is forty-eight bucks—and that isn’t nearly enough to buy Christmas presents for his wife and his kids. On impulse, he steals a wad of cash from the kettle of a downtown street-corner Santa. He thinks he’s gotten away with it—until he realizes he’s been observed by a bright-eyed six-year-old boy.

  • Publisher: The Cobham and Hatherton Press
  • Publication Year: 1991
  • Pages: 32

The Chinese Fire Drill

Expatriate American novelist Anthony Holton, living in Bangkok, hears that his best friend Jake McKay has gone missing in Hong Kong along with his pride and joy, a yacht called The Hong Kong Lady. Holton is on the next plane to help, because Jake is just that kind of friend. He finds a collection of pretty scary people, including the head of a Hong Kong triad, a fugitive diamond smuggler, a young Chinese billionaire, and an American mercenary who knows all the different ways there are to kill a man. Distracted by a dalliance with McKay’s platonic roommate, Kate Longley, Holton finds himself all tangled up in international smuggling—and violent death.

“…a fast-paced, enjoyable Hong Kong adventure… Roberts’ debut as a thriller writer draws on his strength as a plotter, and the book’s economy offers a nice antidote to the bloated thrillers that weigh down many bookshelves.” (Publisher’s Weekly)

  • Publisher: Five Star
  • Publication Year: 2001
  • Pages: 190

The Scent of Spiced Oranges

Table of Contents

“Little Cat Feet” (first published in Cat Crimes, 1991) “Good Boys” (first published in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 1992) “Angel of Death” first published in City Reports, December 1993) “The Scent of Spiced Oranges” (first published in Cat Crimes II, 1992) “The Fat Stamp” (first published in Elvis Rising, 1993) “The Pig Man” (first published in Deadly Allies II, 1994) “The Catnap” (first published in Feline and Famous, 1994) “The Brave Little Costume Designer” (first published in Once Upon a Crime, 1998) “Willing to Work” (first published in Murder on Route 66, 1999) “The Gathering of the Clan” (first published in The Shamus Game, 2000)

  • Publisher: Five Star
  • Publication Year: 2002
  • Pages: 200