San Francisco journalist Enzo Lee is the King of Fluff: light features that rely on "pithy one-liners, bad puns and witty opening paragraphs of dubious taste."
Features like the story about "the unfortunate casket mix up involving the mayor’s deceased mother and a dead Saint Bernard: ('San Franciscans long convinced that the city is run by a son of a bitch got further confirmation yesterday…')."
Lee, of course, is fictional. But his creator, Robert Lowe of Piedmont, is a real-life, Pulitzer Prize-winning former investigative reporter who has just published his first novel, the mystery-thriller Project Moses.
The book chronicles Lee's transformation into accidental sleuth when the deaths of a judge and a prosecutor propel him along a dangerous path through 1990s Chinatown and elsewhere. It's available as an e-book at Amazon.com (Kindle edition, $2.99) and at Barnes & Noble (Nook edition, $2.99). Amazon reviews so far give it five stars.
Lowe himself has undergone some transformations. A Stanford graduate, he was a newspaper reporter for 12 years. He won a Pultizer Prize while at the Arizona Daily Star in Tucson for investigations into the University of Arizona's sports program.
As newspaper resources for investigative reporting began to shrink, Lowe decided on a career switch and earned a law degree from Harvard. He practiced law for five years, specializing in the creation and early financing of high-tech startups in Silicon Valley.
After a stint as executive vice president with a Japanese-based software company, he co-founded two software startups. Now he's added another profession: novelist.
Lowe says he's a lifelong fan of mysteries, starting with the Hardy Boys. He's already working on a second book, with some of the same characters.
Lowe has lived in Piedmont since 2000. His older daughter, Chenery, graduated from Piedmont High School in 2010 and is a sophomore at Kenyon College in Ohio. His younger daughter, Halle, is a seventh grader at Piedmont Middle School. He has been active in local youth sports, serving as a coach and referee for area soccer leagues.
His wife, Candace Turtle, who is also a former journalist, has been an active volunteer in the classrooms, libraries and College and Career Center in the Piedmont schools.