Stuart Woods book signing
IF YOU GO
Stuart Woods Book Signing
What: Best-selling author will autograph copies of his 26th Stone Barrington novel, “Unintended Consequences”
When: 2 p.m. Saturday
Where: Barnes & Noble, 5377 U.S. 41 N., Naples
Something else: If you can’t attend the book signing, pre-order a copy of “Unintended Consequences” and Stuart Woods will autograph it. The store will mail it to you; shipping is extra.
He’s tall, handsome, rich, smart and sexy — adjectives abound when describing Stone Barrington, the main character from Stuart Woods’ best-selling novels. And he’s got a potty mouth.
But Woods thinks the language is necessary.
F*** is a “very expressive word,” said the author in a telephone interview about his newest novel, “Unintended Consequences.” “I’m a minimalist as a writer and I try to use (language) as well as I can, even if I say f***.”
The word seems to be Stone’s favorite pastime as well.
“Stone sort of follows his nose. Some (women) he sleeps with; some he doesn’t,” said Woods of his character’s sexual nature. “He pays attention to the pretty ones, not the fat, ugly ones.”
Naples women — and men — will have a chance to meet the man behind the man when Woods comes to Barnes & Noble on Saturday, for a book signing.
The character seems to resonate with readers who were first introduced to him in Woods’ novel, “New York Dead,” released in 1991. A retired New York City police detective, Stone has had quite a life, from living on a police pension to a multimillionaire status serving as an attorney for an exclusive New York law firm.
“He’s sort of trailed along with me,” said Woods, of his adventurous character Stone. But “he’s a distinctly different person than me.”
“He’s taller, skinnier and luckier than me,” Woods adds with a laugh.
Stone seems to live a charmed life nowadays, albeit with some complications. In “Unintended Consequences,” he’s in Paris, but cannot remember why or how he got there. And he’s got 20,000 euros in his bag. Luckily, he ends up at the U.S. embassy where he crosses paths with a young CIA operative, Rich La Rose, and the two launch a multination investigation into the mystery.
Tales of fancy parties, luxury cars, private planes, signal-scrambling iPhones and billionaires glitter from the pages of “Unintended Consequences” like diamonds on a socialite. But Stone seems invincible to peril — or at least to STDs and major illnesses.
“Nobody has cancer. People drop dead from a bullet, not heart disease,” said Woods of his stories. “These characters all live in a parallel universe next to mine.”
In that universe Stone never ages, although his son has grown up in the series. Stone and his best friend Dino are in their early 40’s, and will remain that way.
“It’s the only way I can fight old age,” said the 75-year-old author, “to live vicariously through Stone.”
But Woods still considers his novels work and writes a chapter a day. “It’s about an hour a day. It used to take four.”
That equates to three new novels a year for the Georgia native.
His genre is typically action/adventure detective novels, with many featuring Stone and his former partner, Dino. The books often involve murder, money and several sexual encounters. “Unintended Consequences” is Woods’ 26th Stone Barrington novel. It is his 52nd fiction novel overall, with other series novels featuring Holly Barker, Will Lee and Ed Eagle. He wrote one nonfiction book, “Blue Water, Green Skipper.”
But Woods’ mark in the literary world came with his first novel, “Chiefs,” which was published in 1981 and garnered an Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America. Later, it became a six-hour television drama, starring Charlton Heston.
Woods often draws on locations he visits when writing his novels. With homes in New York, Maine and Key West, he has a plethora of settings to draw upon. And this summer the author plans to spend a month in Paris. He will “get a book from that” — and make the trip a tax deduction, he says.
But it’s doubtful that Naples will ever be featured in Woods’ novels, despite having been here for speaking engagements and author signings. He says he likes to write about places where he spends more time.
Maybe Neapolitans should pressure him to stay at the book signing.