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It’s 1969, and the world is on fire. When rock music reporter Tom Bean gets a tip that something is fishy about the death of The Rolling Stones’ Brian Jones, he investigates and gets a beating for his troubles. That sets him on a race to stay one step ahead of shadowy killers targeting Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison as he tries to save their lives. Fast-moving and noirish, this historical novel is based on actual FBI and CIA operations of the time, including the implausibly named but entirely real Operation CHAOS, which tried to disrupt opponents of the the Nixon Administration.

In his long-awaited second novel, Dain Dunston, the author of The Downside of Up, gives us a rock & roll novel in the tradition of Nick Horby, Don DeLillo and Jeannifer Egan. The Straight Dope takes us on a tour of the world of rock in its most exciting era, chasing the action from San Francisco to New York, London and Paris, in the company of the most compelling rock stars of the day.

“Probably you’re thinking it’s implausible that the CIA maybe sorta wanted to kill four counter-culture rock stars in the 1960s. Probably you’re forgetting that J. Edgar Hoover liked to wear dresses and that Elvis and Nixon were tight. The Straight Dope is a trippy ride into the what-if of the weirdest part of the American 20th Century, when Manson really did hang out with the Beach Boys, Hunter S. Thompson really did ride with the Hells Angels…and the feds really did regard rock and roll as a threat. This thing is so good I had the munchies after the first chapter.”

“Probably you’re thinking it’s implausible that the CIA maybe sorta wanted to kill four counter-culture rock stars in the 1960s. Probably you’re forgetting that J. Edgar Hoover liked to wear dresses and that Elvis and Nixon were tight. The Straight Dope is a trippy ride into the what-if of the weirdest part of the American 20th Century, when Manson really did hang out with the Beach Boys, Hunter S. Thompson really did ride with the Hells Angels…and the feds really did regard rock and roll as a threat.”

“This thing is so good I had the munchies after the first chapter.”

Neely Tucker
Author, Murder, D.C., The Ways of the Dead

“Nearly 50 years after they died, the members of the 27 Club still haunt us. In this page-turner of a thriller, Dain Dunston’s young reporter tries to stop their killers. Can peace and love win out?”

Charles McNair
Author, Land O’Goshen, Pickett’s Charge, The Epicureans.