Before becoming a best-selling mystery novelist, Robert Crais was a highly successful teleplay writer. After relocating to Hollywood in 1976, he quickly found work penning episodes of crime-related dramas, like "Quincy M.E.," with Jack Klugman as a crime-solving coroner, and "Baretta," which starred the notorious Robert Blake as an undercover detective. A string of top-rated cop shows followed: "Cagney & Lacey," "Miami Vice," and Steven Bochco's award-winning "Hill Street Blues." After working with "law," Crais attended to the "order" end of the spectrum, putting his pen into the courtroom for episodes of "L.A. Law" and "JAG." He dealt with both when he scripted the gritty miniseries "Cross of Fire," which dealt with the rape and murder of a schoolteacher by a leader of the Ku Klux Klan. By the mid 1980s, Crais was able to embark on his literary career, a lifelong dream he'd had since picking up a Raymond Chandler mystery at age 15. His first novel, "The Monkey's Raincoat," was published in 1987 and introduced his gumshoe team of Joe Pike and Elvis Cole. They brought the author an Anthony Award for Best First Novel as well as a loyal readership; the Cole-Pike books became Crais's signature series. One of his first novels without them, "Hostage," was turned into a Bruce Willis movie.