‘Captain Cooked’ Book Signings – Meet The Author!

Listen, there’s a new book out and it’s an island culinary/romance/mystery novel that got me at its great title. It’s called Captain Cooked.

Full disclosure: I know about this book because its author, Steve Grogan, hired me before publication to review it for Hawaiian cultural accuracy. It’s set here on the Big Island, and he wanted to make sure he had his Hawai‘i facts down.

And so I got to read it early on, and saw that it’s really a fun read. Included throughout the book are really interesting island-related recipes. There’s also geocaching and more. And get this: He has hidden a shark-teeth club somewhere on the Big Island, and the book contains clues as to its location. Find the treasure and win $5000! This book really has it all! (Don’t ask me where the treasure is. I really have no idea.)

He did a similar thing with his previous book, a mystery titled Vegas Die. (Great book titles, huh?!) Nobody found the hidden dagger. Read where it was.

Vegas Die, published by Addison & Highsmith Publishers, has gained recognition as a “Best Seller” in the West, with its special twist featuring a dagger worth $25,000 hidden somewhere in the Las Vegas Valley, with clues to be found within the book. The fictional plot centers around the murders of retired mobsters with the Mayor of Las Vegas becoming the #1 suspect.

Back to his current book: Steve Grogan is going to be here, on the Big Island and O‘ahu, signing books, and you should swing by. I’m going to stop by when he’s at Basically Books in Hilo on Saturday. He is an interesting guy and you should stop by, say hello and pick up a book, which he’ll sign for you.

If you cannot make a signing, you can order Captain Cooked online.

Captain Cooked Book Signing Tour Dates

Big Island

Saturday, February 19th Borders Bookstore, 75-1000 Henry Street in Kailua-Kona 10:30 am (808.331.1668)  — Tentative–check with store

Saturday, February 19th at Basically Books 160 Kamehameha Ave. in Hilo 2 pm (800.903.6277)

Sunday, February 20th   10am, Big Island Geocachers at Island Lava Java restaurant, 75-5799 Ali’i Dr., on Kona Bay in Kailua-Kona – Public welcome

Sunday, February 20th Royal Kona Resort with book cover Tiki artist Brad Parker, 4 pm to sunset,  75-5852 Ali’i Drive, Kailua-Kona

Tuesday, March 1st, Kona Stories in Kailua-Kona 6 pm ‘Words & Wine,’ Keauhou Shopping Center,  78-6831 Ali’i Drive (808.324-0350)


Friday, February 25th,  Pau Hana Meet & Greet with O’ahu Geocachers, 6-8 p.m.  at Kaka’ako Kitchen, 1200 Ala Moana Blvd. (Ward Centre)—Free, public welcome

Saturday, February 26th at Barnes & Noble in Ala Moana Center 1450 Ala Moana Blvd. Suite 1272   11am-2pm (808.949.7307)

Sunday, February 27th at Barnes & Noble at Kahala Mall 4211 Waialae Avenue   (808.737.3323) 1:30 pm-3:30 pm

Please contact book stores and locations to verify times

Please note: due to the impending Borders Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing the Honolulu book signings were cancelled and adjust your calendar accordingly.

Some of the press the book has received so far, and store announcements:

Captain Cooked Recent News Articles, Blogs, Book Store Postings

— as of February 1st, 2011

Craig’s List

Honolulu Star Advertiser

Big Island Chronicle

Hawaii Life of Luxury

Hawaii Book Blog

Hawaii Star

Big Island – Big Island Blog

News Blaze review

You Tube Video

Craig’s List

Native Books – Na Mea Hawaii

Basically Books – Hilo

The Big Island’s Food Basket Calendar

Kahakai Kitchen Blog



Hunt Intensifies for $25,000 Dagger!


This press release just arrived about the Stephen Grogan mystery Vegas Die. It’s the previous novel of an author I did some editing for recently.

The editing I did was for his next book, Captain Cooked, which is, of course!, a culinary mystery set in Hawai‘i.

Stephen Grogan Vegas Die

The $25,000 murder weapon is not at the bottom of the ocean near the ship-wrecked Titanic, nor was it dropped in Lake Mead at Hoover Dam. And you can’t locate the hidden dagger by putting the best-selling mystery, Vegas Die, under your pillow and hoping the answer leaks into your brain while you’re sleeping.

But some have made those guesses.

This week, Publisher Addison & Highsmith has released an abbreviated list of the most unusual Questor guesses in search for the elusive dagger worth $25,000, and they can be found at: www.QuestMystery.com

Represented are only a few of the hundreds of official guesses received to date in the search of the $25,000 treasure, the clues located in the book, Vegas Die, by Las Vegas author, Stephen Grogan.  Promoted as a three year ‘Quest Mystery’, the hunt is entering its second year with searchers, known as ‘Questors’, emailing in their analysis of clues to be found in Vegas Die.

The book has garnered positive reviews, and on its way to becoming a cult classic, with a plot featuring the Mayor of Las Vegas as the #1 suspect in mob murders.  Says author Grogan, “My intention was to create an interactive book in this multi-media society, one where you read the book first as a mystery, and see no clues, then as a treasure hunt where clues rise from the pages. And with a 3 year contest time limit the book offers longer shelf life of interest.”

To date, states publisher Addison & Highsmith, Vegas Die has become a favorite of tourists, those seeking a take-home souvenir instead of casino shot glasses or Strip postcards.  The $16.95 mystery is one of the top selling books at Las Vegas McCarran Airport, selling over 700 books at one book store alone since January.

Many of the Questor guesses are reasonable, such as “The Dagger is on Black Mountain, under the letter ‘B’.” Or, “The Dagger is located in the middle of Duck Creek trail, next to Sam Boyd Stadium.”

 Some guesses are a little strange. “The Dagger is located within the large blue elephant at King Putt Mini Golf.”  Or, “The dagger is a rose bush at or around one of these gardens…”

And beyond strange.

“I have another guess,” writes a dedicated Questor, “The mayor has a package for me, and I need to go pick it up. Because he has the Dagger!”

Another writes, “The DAGGER  is a standing microphone used by standup comic Jerry Lewis.”

Then there was the one Questor who wrote a several page explanation of location that boiled down to: “Enough of games. I know what you are looking for. I can prove who I am. I have a birth mark on my inner left leg and the mark in my left hand. I am the dagger. But before you contact anyone and tell them you found me, contact me first.”

Is author Stephen Grogan nervous about the variety of Questors out there tearing apart the clues in Vegas Die, certain they will be the dagger’s discoverer?

“So far, all the Questors have been quite enthused and dedicated,” said Grogan, “and I have made quite a few friends. It is to be expected there will be frustration for Questors if there is no quick solution.  In truth, I hope someone finds the dagger prize. It will validate the Quest Mystery concept, and open the door to the sequel I am writing.”

In these tough economic times, wouldn’t $25,000 come in handy, even it means treasure hunting for a murder weapon? 

Vegas Die (ISBN:978-0-9801164-0-3) $16.95. The mystery is available by ordering through most national bookstore chains or at Amazon.com or signed copies at www.QuestMystery.com 

For further information visit “Press Kit” at www.QuestMystery.com or contact Addison & Highsmith Publishers, (702) 759-0002 or fax (702) 759-0003. Email: AddisonHighsmith@gmail.com.  For author interviews contact: (702) 303-5915 or email: grogan.sp@gmail.com 


Culinary Mystery Novel “Captain Cooked” by Stephen Grogan

We went to Hilo Bay Cafe for dinner the other night while my mom was here visiting. That is such a great restaurant – inside it’s really got the ambience happening, in spite of its unlikely location in a strip mall adjacent to Wal-Mart, and the food is always so fresh and good.

While there, I talked with them about getting some recipes for an author I’m working with. Stephen Grogan, a Las Vegas author of a previous book called Vegas Die, is, interestingly enough, writing a culinary/mystery novel set here on the Big Island. He hired me to edit the manuscript for Hawai‘i references and history and culture.

Stephen Grogan
Stephen Grogan

He actually found and hired me through this blog, which proves that blogging is definitely worth the time and effort. We did all our business together by email.

Steve’s new book’s title is great: “Captain Cooked.” How could I resist that? I did the edit, and helped him gather up some Big Island recipes to go into the book too. The chef at Hilo Bay Cafe has agreed to provide a couple recipes, too.

There’s an interesting gimmick in Steve’s previous book. He hid a dagger somewhere in the metropolitan Las Vegas area, the book provides (kind of hard) clues to its location, and the person who finds it takes $25,000! 

People have been actively seeking it for quite awhile now. There’s even a forum where they go to discuss clues and such. 

He’s going to do the same thing with Captain Cooked, so stay tuned for how to win your $25,000! I’ll let you know when the book is coming out.