Come Meet the Family, PI Jason Longfellow, Chelsea, and Kids (PLEASURIA AND MURDER BY ROAD TRIP)

I’d like to introduce you to the family, the main characters in our comedy murder mystery series, currently including PLEASURIA: TAKE AS DIRECTED and MURDER BY ROAD TRIP. They are PI Jason Longfellow, Chelsea, his wife, and their three daughters, Lizzy, Lilly and Lucy. PI Jason Longfellow

I’ve read hundreds of murder mysteries, and the best ones are those with memorable characters that capture the reader’s interest and imagination. Those characters have human frailties and personal struggles that the reader can identify and commiserate with. Robert B. Parker was a master at creating such characters. I’ve read most of his books and I feel like Spenser, Sunny Randall and Jesse Stone are old friends. PI Jason Longfellow

Keep in mind that we intend this to be a comedy murder mystery series, with interesting and difficult to solve mysteries and laugh-out-loud comedy. This is 2020-2021, and in real life we’ve had more than enough to be depressed about. So, it’s our intention to lighten things up, a lot. Besides, after working in the high stress pharmaceutical industry for almost 40 years, I might just be a little loopy myself. PI Jason Longfellow

Dr. Jason Longfellow is an FDA drug reviewer who works in the pharmaceutical and medical biotechnology industry. You never know what’s going to happen when scientists mess around with your physiology, anatomy, brain chemistry, cells, hormones, immune system and especially your DNA. Things can go seriously wrong accidentally, and believe it or not, sometimes by evil design. You might learn something about drugs and biologics by getting to know Jason, although laughter really is the best medicine. PI Jason Longfellow  

Jason lives in Northern Virginia with his wife Chelsea and their three young daughters, Lizzy (14), Lilly (12) and Lucy (6). He loves his wife and children, and goes out of his way to spend time with them. Much like Robert B. Parker’s Spenser, he lives by his own unbreakable code; to be a good provider, protect his family, never be unfaithful to his wife and always stand up to evil. Jason is a determined man, but unlike Spenser, he is not a great fighter, fearless, strong, terrifying or unbeatable. That would be his wife. He is excellent at his day job, but as an amateur detective he doesn’t seem to have a clue. PI Jason Longfellow

In his mid-forties, Jason has worked for the FDA as a drug reviewer for twenty years. As happens to many of us, he loved his job at first. But, after twenty years he is bored with the tedium of the daily grind and worn down by a horrific commute on the Washington Beltway. The stress doesn’t end when he gets home, as his three daughters are a handful. PI Jason Longfellow

Then, there’s Jason’s other stressor, Chelsea. They obviously love each other, but they are direct opposites. She’s a very strong personality, and not keen on his insane idea of quitting his day job and becoming a private eye. She prefers a husband with a dependable income. PI Jason Longfellow

Like most humans, Jason comes with some baggage from his past, a violently abusive boozing father that left him insecure, with difficulty feeling safe. He developed survival skills as a child to counter those constant feelings of fear, including hypervigilance and OCD. This leads to his counting things, repeated checking that doors are locked and secured, and other behaviors that let him pretend to control the chaos (and drive Chelsea to distraction). So, he hates chaos in his life. PI Jason Longfellow

Chelsea, also in her mid-forties, is vibrant, fit, attractive, and smart. She met Jason when she was in nursing school and he was finishing up his doctorate in pharmacology. Her life is also filled with stress. She started out as an ER nurse, but the horrible things she saw led to nightmares and a change in career path to hospital administration. She also has the stress of raising three young daughters, always defiant, especially to Mom, and constantly plugged into their electronic devices (iPhone, iPod, iPad, laptop, etc.). Chelsea’s greatest stress is Jason. PI Jason Longfellow

Chelsea is a nurse from a family of medical professionals, and a strong personality with her own code. She believes in three things: a faithful husband that is a good provider and willing to agree with her a lot (read ‘all the time’), why cook when there’s so much take-out available, and the world is a messy place where you should embrace the chaos. (So in summary, Jason is terrified of chaos, and Chelsea exists as chaos personified). PI Jason Longfellow

Chelsea comes with her own baggage, an alcoholic mother and a father who was a doctor with a wandering eye for the ladies and a tendency towards infidelity. When Chelsea catches Jason checking out some curvaceous young thing, as men in their mid-forties (or any age really) are known to do, she knows he would never be unfaithful. But, her mind still transfers that old anger at her father’s behavior to Jason; her father was unfaithful, so in her subconscious mind Jason will be too. So round and round they go. This results in lots of squabbling, which ironically becomes quite useful in Jason’s new career. PI Jason Longfellow

So, the story begins with a fairly normal married couple, each with his or her own human foibles. Well, they say opposites attract, and up until this point Jason and Chelsea have found the perfect balance between chaos and control, his yin to her yang. PI Jason Longfellow

Then, Jason does something extraordinary. He makes a decision that his wife vehemently opposes, that will most certainly lead to the very chaos that he tries to avoid. The way to alleviate his stress and boredom is to pursue an exciting new career, as a private eye. What could be better than solving crimes, catching the bad guy, fighting evil? PI Jason Longfellow

Chelsea is against it, but Jason is determined. Somewhat out of character, she decides it’s best to compromise. He can pursue cases on the weekend, but he MUST keep his day job as an FDA drug reviewer with a proven income. Jason signs up for an online course in private eyeing, gets his license and a CCW permit, and we’re off. So much for the perfect balance between chaos and control… PI Jason Longfellow

His first case falls into his lap in PLEASURIA: TAKE AS DIRECTED, when several people die, or almost die; the cause could be a drug side effect. Several of the suspects in his murder investigation are attractive female employees of a drug company, whom Jason has to interrogate. (Remember Chelsea’s father and the wandering eye thing?). So, you not only get to help Jason solve the bizarre mystery, but can you guess whether it will be the killer or Chelsea who takes out Jason first? PI Jason Longfellow

In this book, you get to know Jason, Chelsea and family, and witness Jason’s skills as a father of three daughters. There’s the 13-year-old who asks dad if she can get a push-up bra, the middle daughter who would like to eliminate the little one, and the little one, who takes great pride in plying her cosmetology skills on her father. Then, there’s the family camping disaster…I mean trip, and so on and so on. PI Jason Longfellow

Ultimately, Jason’s first part-time investigation (he’s not allowed to quit his day job) involves chasing an elusive and maniacal serial killer, with a penchant for harmful pharmaceuticals. While Jason’s a crack drug reviewer, his skills as a private eye are, shall we say, limited. Can you figure out what’s going on before Jason does? How would you catch the killer? You’ll be astounded by Jason’s clever plan. PI Jason Longfellow

You’ll be glad to hear that neither Chelsea, nor the serial killer, kill Jason in the first book. Convenient, since I wanted to continue the comedy murder mystery series with these same characters. Thus, the second book, MURDER BY ROAD TRIP.

In this one, Jason gets a call from a drug company on the West Coast that wants to interview him for a high paying job. Jason is not thrilled, because this would require more hours and he would have to put PI Longfellow in the closet for a while. Chelsea, on the other hand, is thrilled with the idea. The Longfellow family embarks on a cross-country road trip in an RV (with all three daughters in tow) to get to the interview, Chelsea’s way of ensuring Jason gets there. PI Jason Longfellow

During the trip, Jason exhibits his fatherly skills when he gets himself stuck in the tunnel of a child’s water slide, gets attacked by Fred Flintstone, and eats his way across country at McDonalds, his daughters having it their way. In this story, it becomes clear that Jason is a true crime magnet, as he and Chelsea investigate a number crazy crimes (the great cheese caper, attack by comfort animals, the thieving monkey, the kidnapping ex-wife, where the hell are all the buffalo, etc). Oh, and by the way, for reasons unknown the road trip is quite invigorating to the middle-aged Jason; and the other mystery, why does someone keep trying to steal his teeth? PI Jason Longfellow

As an aside, MURDER BY ROAD TRIP was inspired by a 30-day cross-country road trip that I took with my daughter in July 2016. All the stops along the way in the book are actual places, although the story itself is pure fiction. My daughter and I are currently writing a trip blog based on that trip, and I am happy to say that at twenty-six she hardly ever agrees with my perspective on each destination (I did my best to raise her as an independent woman, and I did a helluva job. I just didn’t think it through and realize that it would come back to haunt me later in life). PI Jason Longfellow

There is a third book coming later this year, to be entitled THE REALTOR’S CURSE. Jason and Chelsea buy a condo in Florida, and he is REALLY a crime magnet in this one. Since my wife and I recently bought a condo in Florida, it also provides an informed perspective on Florida in general (I apologize in advance, Florida). PI Jason Longfellow

One of the things that I like best about our characters PI Jason and Chelsea is the way they get along, in spite of being completely opposite personalities. Theirs is not always a perfect marriage, or a serene marriage, or a peaceful marriage, or a happy marriage…well, you get the idea. And, they often resolve their disagreements with Jason sleeping…well…in his car. But, they do get along, and they love each other, he would never be unfaithful to his wife (he loves her, and she’s a jealous nurse who knows all about pain; so there’s that), and they have a very interesting life. PI Jason Longfellow

I also like the way they are adjusting as a couple to Jason’s increasingly demanding part-time job as a private eye. Chelsea is becoming more involved in Jason’s investigations, and they are developing an interesting interrogation technique. They squabble and argue in front of the suspect until he/she becomes so distraught that they confess, just to make it stop. Turns out, it’s a pretty effective technique. PI Jason Longfellow

I hope you’ve enjoyed becoming acquainted with Jason, Chelsea and family, and will buy the books and join them on their wacky adventures, helping them to solve many interesting, and often unique crimes. And, with Jason’s unusual skill as a crime magnet, there’s plenty of investigating to keep them busy, which is great, just so he doesn’t quit his day job (Chelsea’ll kill him and we’ll have to start a new series). PI Jason Longfellow

If you liked this blog, you will most definitely enjoy the books:

PLEASURIA: TAKE AS DIRECTED available on Amazon at

MURDER BY ROAD TRIP available on Amazon at