After more than three decades in law enforcement, Pat Rooney decided it was time to put his expertise to use—not as a police officer, but as an author.
Now the 55-year-old Carney resident will be signing copies of his book "For Love Nor Love" and meeting readers at Souris' Saloon in Towson this evening from 5-8 p.m.
Rooney describes the book as a "murder mystery with a couple of neat little twists to it." One of those twists is that the book is set right here in Baltimore County.
"A very prominent criminal attorney is killed in the opening chapter, it takes place at a fictional house in the Hunt Valley/Phoenix area," Rooney said. "Coincidentally, just about the same time as he's murdered, the body of one of his clients is found in an alley in Baltimore City."
Rooney, who worked as a Baltimore County cop for 21 years, said that although the book is a work of fiction many of the characters in it are based on officers and people he knew.
And, perhaps most importantly to him, all the policework in the story could have happened.
"You see in movies now, a cop's life is nothing but action; that’s not the way real police work is," Rooney said. "I just hate cop movies that in the opening sequence ... more people are killed than are killed in that city in a year [in reality]."
But in "For Love Nor Love" Rooney draws on his experience to try and get it right.
"The way police officers have to interact, network, work with each other, share information ... the political things that get involved that stop police from being able to do their job as thoroughly or as quickly as they’re supposed to," he said. "The gripes and complaints about the agencies and compliments to the agencies, all those things are true."
For those interested in reading the book, which was published by Friesen Press and released in November 2012, hard copies are available at Ukazoo Books in Towson and Greetings & Readings in Hunt Valley, Rooney said.
It's also available for order online at Amazon and for download in all the major e-book formats.
And what's in the future for Rooney? Well, most immediately book signings at Ukazoo Books (Feb. 17) and Greetings & Readings (Mar. 2); then he's hoping to publish a few more books.
"I have four others outlined and started and they all take place in Baltimore County as the primary location," he said. "I actually have a second one done— I'm just biding my time waiting to get everything done with this one."