The Pink Room

"If you've ever wondered what happens behind the curtains of a presidential election, you must pick this one up!" – Midwest Book Review"


"Another provocative, engrossing, fast-action novel by Mark LaFlamme! Greed, deceit, unscrupulous politicians, a stolen corpse, and a tragically sympathetic protagonist blend together to deliver a winning story you won't be able to put down. The author, also a journalist, ably captures the 'dirt' of American politics of our turbulent times. If you've ever wondered what happens behind the curtains of a presidential election, you must pick this one up!"

--Mayra Calvani, Midwest Book Review

Calvin Cotton is out of his mind. We find him at Riverside Cemetery bursting in on the darkness of the tomb. He is the son of a presidential candidate. But tonight, he is only a husband insane over the loss of his bride. He imagines her trapped within the cold clutch of the coffin and works quicker to free her. Soon, he will have her in his arms and they will vanish into the night.

Gov. Frank F. Cotton is out of his mind. He has learned of his son’s nighttime ghoulishness and panic has set in. It is the kind of sordid scandal that can bring about ruin. He’s seen good men go down in flames for less. Howard Dean with the animal scream in 2004. Edmund Muskie with the phantom tear in 1972. And if press got a hold of this? Frank F. will not let it happen.

Thomas Cashman is thinking outside the box. Given the circumstances, he finds this idea deliciously funny. A mercenary with secrets of his own, his top priority is to find young Calvin Cotton and his stiffening bride. Thomas has an unorthodox idea. He will enlist the aid of washed up novelist Billy Baylor to help understand what motivates the deranged young man he seeks.

Billy Baylor is drinking whiskey in a scrubby, downtown bar. Ultimately, he is happy because he will probably die in his sleep. It could be tonight. It could be tomorrow. Either way, it will be peaceful. He has published twelve novels and invented a new genre. He likes to call it “suburban necrophilia.” Billy Baylor has made a career out of writing about the extreme measures a man will take when pushed to madness by the loss of a love. Only one of his novels had a happy ending. He regards it as his one failure. Since his wife and daughter were killed in a car wreck, he doesn’t believe in happy endings.

Set in the early days of the primary season, "Dirt" is a fast and ugly tale of the treachery and desperation behind an American campaign. The hunt for Calvin Cotton is a sordid thrill ride along the same frozen back roads where candidates smile, shake hands and try to keep their secrets buried.

In the bid for the most powerful position in the world, one man’s dirt is another man’s gold.

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