Chutes and Ladder: A Silicon Valley Mystery by Marc Jedel


Author Guest Post by Marc Jedel

My book, Chutes and Ladder: A Silicon Valley Mystery, is a humorous murder mystery. Silicon Valley is not your typical cozy mystery locale and Marty Golden doesn’t fit the normal profile of a mystery protagonist.

Despite finding himself thrust into challenging situations, Marty isn’t exactly hero material.

He has a wonderful combination of wit, irreverent humor and sarcasm mixed in with nerdy insecurities, absent-mindedness, and fumbling but effective amateur sleuthing skills. With an active inner voice and not a lot of advanced planning, he throws himself into solving problems.

To get a better understanding of Marty and the Silicon Valley that he enjoys, I wanted to share 

Marty Golden’s Fun Yet Wacky Things to Do in the Bay Area / Silicon Valley:

  1. San Francisco Tiled Mosaic Staircases – Locals refer to these beautiful works of art as the secret tiled staircases. For Marty, the phrase “secret” or “do not enter” has always attracted him. There are several decorated staircases, but check out the one on 16th Avenue first as it’s the nicest, with amazing mosaics on the steps all the way up the hill.
  1. Eat Clam Chowder in a Sourdough Bread Bowl, then watch the sea lions at Pier 39. You’re going to be hungry after climbing all those steps so grab some clam chowder in a bread bowl at Boudin’s. Then walk over to the sea lions next door at Pier 39. No, this isn’t a big secret but it’s still pretty wacky. After the 1989 earthquake, the sea lions took over a pier for their own use. Marty believes the earthquake was just the last straw for them. Not only was the ocean too cold, but they objected to the A’s beating the Giants in the World Series that year. They’re fun to watch and you can pretend it’s educational because you’ll learn the difference between a seal and sea lion. Try to remember the definition at least long enough to do item #4 on this list.
  1. Santa Cruz Mystery Spot — How could Marty not be attracted to a place that describes itself as a “gravitational anomaly located in the redwood forests near Santa Cruz”? Marty’s been several times — no kids required, although a child-like sense of wonder helps — and the hysterical guides and strange demonstrations are well worth it.
  1. Kayaking at the Elkhorn Slough in Monterey Bay — It’s not far from the Mystery Spot and it’s beautiful. You can rent kayaks or go on a Hydro Bike. Yes, ride a bike on the water. And, you won’t fall in. Marty prefers to kayak but gets a kick out of passing bikers on the water. You’ll see tons of sea otters, sea lions, and seals, not to mention birds. If you paid attention at Pier 39, you’ll even know the difference between them.
  1. Circus Trees in Gilroy Gardens amusement park. If you have little children and want a day at an unusual amusement park, this is the place. Marty stumbled across the wild “circus trees” displayed there. Their bizarreness was right up his alley. Look up the pictures even if you don’t visit.
  1. Computer History Museum or the Apple Visitor Center. You’ve spent all this effort to get to Silicon Valley so you’ve got to stop by at least one techie place. Marty would suggest the Computer History Museum if you like museums and history, or drop by the free Apple Visitor Center to look into their new spaceship campus. You could go to NASA’s Ames Visitor Center to see space stuff but Marty thinks the Apple building looks more like a real spaceship to him.
  1. San Jose options. Since none of the above sites were in the city where Marty lives, I wanted to share a few San Jose selections. You can also visit the Winchester Mystery House (a must), attend a Mystery Dinner Theater, or visit one of the many Mystery Rooms. Yes, Marty loves a fun, little mystery — as long as they’re not too scary … and there’s food nearby.

Chutes and Ladder and Uncle and Ants are both available free to Kindle Unlimited readers and will only stay at their promotional prices on Amazon during the Great Escapes tour so be sure to pick them up today. For more about the books or author, please visit


For most of my life, I’ve been inventing stories. Some, especially when I was young, involved my sister as the villain. As my sister’s brother for her entire life, I’m highly qualified to tell the tale of this evolving, quirky sibling relationship.

My writing skills were honed in years of marketing leadership positions in Silicon Valley. While my high tech marketing roles involved crafting plenty of fiction, we called these marketing collateral, emails and ads.

The publication of my first novel, Uncle and Ants, gave me permission to claim “author” as my job. This leads to way more interesting discussions than answering “marketing.”

My family would tell you that Marty’s character isn’t much of a stretch of the imagination for me, but I proudly resemble that remark.

Like Marty, I live in Silicon Valley and can’t believe that otherwise normal people would image005 (1)willingly jump out of an airplane and call it fun. Unlike Marty, I have a wonderful wife and a neurotic but sweet, small dog, who is often the first to weigh in on the humor in my writing.

Author Links

Purchase Link: Amazon 


 Chutes and Ladder:
A Silicon Valley Mystery
by Marc Jedel

Marc Jedel is hilarious! . . . I can’t stop laughing at protagonist Marty Golden, perennial and proverbial Feckless Hero. If there were ever a perfect illustration of The Fool card in Tarot, Marty is it!
~Mallory Heart’s Cozies

. . . an original take on an amateur investigation that kept making me giggle all the way to the surprising end. Great for fans of cozies looking for something different.
~Books a Plenty Book Reviews

The book is fast paced and full of humor. The author keeps us guessing as to what has really transpired, and it’s not until the very end that the details are revealed.
~Carla Loves To Read

OMG!!! This book is hysterical…yes, it’s a mystery, but I can’t tell you how many times I laughed out loud at Marty Golden!
~Devilishly Delicious Book Reviews

Chutes and Ladder is an entertaining story with quirky characters, zany incidents, witty dialogue, and guaranteed giggles.
~The Avid Reader

Think Sheldon Cooper, Clark Griswold, and Columbo all rolled into one. This nerdy, intelligent, goofy, silly man, will have you laughing your butt off.
~Lisa Ks Book Reviews

Chutes and Ladder by Marc Jedel is a riveting new cozy mystery. It isn’t like any cozy that I have read, but it is entertaining.
~Baroness’ Book Trove

I love Marc Jedel’s storytelling skills . . . If you are looking for a quirky cozy mystery with oodles of laughter and a super funny sleuth, look no further, for Chutes and Ladder is here!
~The Book Decoder

The book is fast paced and full of humor. In many ways, I could see this book being played out as a movie, with Jerry Lewis starring as Marty.
~Literary Gold

The book was a quick and enjoyable read that pulls you in to see what Marty is going to do next!
~Community Bookstop

I enjoy Marty’s quirkiness because it adds that little something that every story needs to make it stand out.
~Storeybook Reviews


2 thoughts on “Chutes and Ladder: A Silicon Valley Mystery by Marc Jedel

  1. Thanks so much for interviewing and hosting me today. Even if all your readers don’t get a chance to explore the fun and wacky side of Silicon Valley, I hope your readers will enjoy reading CHUTES AND LADDER to get a small sample of the area along with a fun mystery. At, people can get the first chapter FREE for UNCLE AND ANTS (book 1) or CHUTES AND LADDER (book 2) simply by signing up for my newsletter. Book 3, SERF AND TURF, is underway, so now’s a great time to enjoy Uncle Marty’s adventures as he bumbles through his investigations.

    Liked by 1 person

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