Reader’s Club Spring 2021 Newsletter


Hello from Texas

While March 20 is still a few weeks away, it feels like spring here after what felt like a long winter with the record-breaking week of snow, ice, and cold we recently endured. Robins have returned and there are buds on the trees that promise the return of leaves soon to the Live Oak trees.
I hope, wherever you are, that you survived the winter and are enjoying a change of seasons. Like me, I’m sure you’re all happily anticipating the return to normality now that the promising coronavirus vaccines are becoming more widely available. I might actually be able to enjoy seeing a baseball game at the stadium on opening day this year. Wouldn’t that be something?

Howard Drew Debuts This Month

LAPD Detective Howard “Howie” Drew, the titular character of my new Howard Drew Novels series, debuts this month when OMERTA drops on March 9. This is the first book in a police procedural set in, yes you guessed it, Los Angeles, California. Drew begins his career as a homicide detective assigned to the LAPD’s West Bureau.
LAPD detectives at the bureau level don’t have the luxury of investigating only one case at a time. Their case loads require them to juggle several at a time. In keeping with that, Drew gets his baptism by fire as he investigates three different murders in OMERTA. I think you will find it a very readable police procedural with an emphasis on realism and authenticity. Actual homicide cases from the files of the Los Angeles Police Department provided the inspiration for OMERTA.
Since my own experience as a police officer came from working in Oklahoma and Texas departments, I’m relying on a good friend who is an active detective in Southern California to get the accurate details on the inner workings of LAPD homicide investigations for the series.
To celebrate the launch, the digital version of this first book in the series is available for preordering at a special pre-lauch price of $2.99 through launch day, March 9. After launch day it will return to the cover price. So, don’t miss out on your chance to save a couple of bucks by preording from your favorite online bookseller. OMERTA is available wherever digital books are sold. It’s also available in both hardcover and trade paperback for those who prefer print books.
If you buy your books from Amazon and you’d like to preorder OMERTA, and take advantage of the pre-launch sale price, you can do that here.
If you shop on Apple, Kobo, Goggle Play, or any of the other fine online retailers, you can preorder the book at the pre-launch sale price by clicking on the Books2Read universal link here.
There is only a week left until launch day, so if you want to get a copy at the special price you need to move fast.

What Readers Are Saying About Omerta

After I distributed ACR copies of the book last month, reviews are starting to come in from those who requested the book. Here is one from a BookBub reviewer that I really like and wanted to share.


“The author didn’t disappoint. I admit it started out slow, but it picked up the pace when there were multiple cases.
This is my first book by Larry Darter. It reminded me of Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch, except that Harry isn’t a newbie in the homicide department.
Howard ‘Howie’ Drew is committed to being a homicide detective back when he was still in patrol.
While the book title is related to the mafia, there were a lot of homicide and other cases to throw off the reader. Well done on that but I stayed my path.
It’s understandable that the veteran detective would accuse someone so obvious.
Don’t expect much romance here. Sure, there’s a love interest but it’s always mentioned in passing. If I didn’t know any better, it seemed awkward.
I liked the pace of the story too. I can’t wait to see the series unfold.”


What I really love about this review, besides the fact the reader enjoyed the book, is this– “[Howard Drew] reminded me of Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch.” This is exactly what I was aiming to write. Believe me, as a longtime Harry Bosch series fan since the first book, THE BLACK ECHO, I’m under no illusion that I have Michael Connelly’s skills as a writer. But I hoped to write a readable police procedural along the same lines. 

New And Next For Howard Drew

It took me two years to finish OMERTA, but the pace of publishing the followup novels in the series will be much quicker.
I’ve already finished the final draft of THE PENDULUM, the second book in the series, and it is with the editor. It is due for release this coming September.  And, I’m already 25,000 words into the first draft of the third novel, DARKER ANGELS which is scheduled for release in the spring of 2022.
A three-chapter excerpt from both books are available to read free on the respective book pages. Just click on the highlighted titles above to read them now.

What I'm Reading And Enjoying Now

Years ago, I discovered Norwegian crime fiction writer Jo Nesbø and his Harry Hole series, which are among the bestselling detective crime novels in the world. I’ve been hooked on Nordic-noir, also known as Scandinavian noir, ever since. But last year, Nesbø decided to write a stand alone thriller instead of the annual Harry Hole novel. That left me looking for a similar author who writes crime fiction usually written from a police point of view and set in Scandinavia or Nordic countries. I found one, bestselling Icelandic author Ragnar Jónasson. I especially like his Dark Iceland series, set in and around Siglufjörður, and featuring Detective Ari Thor. So far, I’ve read and enjoyed the first two novels in the series, SNOW BLIND and NIGHT BLIND. At the moment I’m reading the third book, BLACK OUT. Jónasson is a wonderfully talented writer and compares most favorably with Jo Nesbø.
Whether you’ve tried Scandinavian noir or not, if you’re a fan of authentic, fast-paced police procedurals, I’m sure you will like the Dark Iceland series. I think the books get better and better with each novel I read.
Until next time, hope you all stay safe and well as we’re hopefully putting the pandemic behind us. Look for the next edition of the Reader’s Newsletter this summer.

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