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Skinny Dip by Carl Hiaasen
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Showing 1-5 of 100 (next | show all)
3.75 stars.

Joey was pushed off a cruise ship by her husband, Chaz. Little does he know, she survived and has no idea why he would want to kill her. She is rescued by Mick, who lives alone on an island. Joey convinces Mick to help her with a plan to get revenge on Chaz.

That was really good. The book included environmental issues, mystery, humour, plenty of characters (many of whom were followed throughout the story) and a lot going on. I don’t read very many mysteries, but this one seemed much more complex than most of the others I’ve read. I thought it was very good, and I likely will read more of Hiaasen’s books. ( )
  LibraryCin | Feb 19, 2014 |
A pointless, predictable (from basically page 2) book. The bad guy never has a chance, we feel no sympathy for him. He is a sitting duck the entire book. The style is repetitive and boring. Not worth the time it takes to read. I wish there was an option of Zero stars. ( )
  lawrence | Feb 4, 2014 |
Another winner. Similar in many respects to his next book, Bad Monkey, but a fun read. ( )
  TulsaTV | Jan 8, 2014 |
Carl Hiaasen's prose has a flavor that is as distinctive as they come. Each character springs up from the page. Even the heroes, who in books of this sort are often too vanilla to hold up against the more colorful, and villainous supporting cast, come across as more than just plot contrivances.

This novel is no exception. It's a quick read and a fun one, a book that makes its environmental point without bashing the reader over the head with it. The humor throughout is mischievous without being cruel, and while it's rarely laugh-out-loud funny, it is entertaining from start to finish. ( )
  shabacus | Oct 24, 2013 |
Someone recommended Carl Hiaasen’s latest book to me, Bad Monkey. But I am not as dumb as I may appear! From the effusive encomium of this trusted recommender, I knew I would like this guy, so I went back a bit in time to acquaint myself with this author. That way, when I found that I loved him, I wouldn’t have to go totally backwards in my reading, which I hate doing! Skinny Dip is a crime novel that sits heads and shoulders above the usual fare, for its characterizations, biting and witty social satire, madcap noirish humor (sort of like the Coen Brothers) and deft writing in general. I am delighted to have discovered this author, and even more so to find out that there are many more of his books to read!

As you discover right in the beginning, Chaz Peronne, good-looking, but good-for-nothing, as well as vapid, contemptible, and greedy, dumps his wife Joey off the deck of a ship on a cruise to celebrate their second wedding anniversary. Joey can swim, but eventually she tires out. However, she lucks out by bumping into a floating bale of Jamaican pot. She hangs on until she is rescued by Mick Stranahan, a 53-year-old ex-cop who now lives on a remote island off the coast of Miami.

Once she recovers, Joey has no interest in calling the police; she wants revenge on Chaz, and Mick agrees to help her. Meanwhile, back on shore, a transplanted Norwegian detective from Minnesota, Karl Rolvaag, who likes to pretend he’s in the script of the movie Fargo, doesn’t buy Chaz’s story that his wife’s death was an accident. So Rolvaag also goes after Chaz.

And that’s not all! Chaz is also being watched by “Tool,” a humongous bodyguard sent by Red Hammernut, his corrupt boss, who worries that Chaz will become unstable and spill the beans about their depredation of the Everglades. Tool is, to me, the best character in the book: very large, very dumb, but soft-hearted, lonely, and more open to new ideas and new relationships than anyone else in the story. The person he finds to fill the holes in his life creates the best and most touching story of the book.

The noose tightens around Chaz, with a corresponding increase in zaniness in the story. I don't think it's purely coincidental that one of the characters loves Fargo - there are many similarities. The story wraps up in a satisfying way, with "cosmic justice" for all!

Discussion: There are several hilarious ongoing jokes in this book, from Chaz’s relationship to his male member, to Tool’s love of collecting roadside crosses, to the trials and tribulations of criminals. Hiaasen integrates them into the story so well, and in just the right proportions, that it is never tedious or repetitive, but rather delightfully entertaining. Mick Stranahan may be an “old geezer” as Joey calls him affectionally, but he is one of the most endearing as well as romantic characters I have encountered in fiction. And Rolvaag: how subtle and funny, and how lovable as well. He too has an unusual way to deal with his loneliness, and one that is also very funny.

This author not only writes books for adults, but has won the coveted Newbery Honor for his debut children’s book. He churns out those now too, as well as some non-fiction. His books get gushing reviews and now I can see why. I can’t wait to tackle more of his oeuvre!

Evaluation: This book is clever, zany, and heartwarming all at once. It’s a quick, entertaining read, and yet it is much more memorable than most in this category. Highly recommended! ( )
  nbmars | Oct 4, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 100 (next | show all)
What do you get when you cross a sleazy marine biologist, a corrupt tycoon with a bad comb-over, and a voluptuous wife hell-bent on revenge? Another delirious romp through the swamps of South Florida from irrepressible Miami Herald columnist Carl Hiaasen. Chaz Perrone was sure he'd seen the last of his wife when he pushed her over the balcony of the Sun Duchess cruise ship off the coast of Florida. But Joey Perrone, a former championship swimmer, survived the fall and clung to a bale of Jamaican hashish long enough to be rescued by retired cop Mick Stranahan. Joey wants to know why her husband wanted her dead (he feared she was onto his scheme of doctoring Florida Everglades water samples at the behest of ruthless agribusiness tycoon Red Hammernut). Then, with Stranahan's help, she wants to drive him crazy.
added by kthomp25 | editBooklist, Allison Block (Jul 9, 2012)

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Carl Hiaasenprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hiassen, Carlmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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At the stroke of eleven on a cool April night, a woman named Joey Perrone went overboard from a luxury deck of a cruise liner M.V. Sun Duchess.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0446615129, Mass Market Paperback)

Charles "Chaz" Perrone fancies himself a take-charge kind of guy. So when this "biologist by default" suspects that his curvaceous wife, Joey, has stumbled onto a profitable pollution scam he's running on behalf of Florida agribusiness mogul Red Hammernut, he sets out right away to solve the problem--by heaving Joey off the deck of a luxury cruise liner and into the Atlantic Ocean, far from Key West. But--whoops!--Joey, a former swimming champ, doesn't drown. Instead, as Carl Hiaasen tells in his 10th adult novel, Skinny Dip, she makes her way back to shore, thanks both to a wayward bale of Jamaican marijuana and lonerish ex-cop Mick Stranahan (Skin Tight, 1989), and then launches a bogus blackmail campaign that's guaranteed to drive her lazy, libidinous hubby into a self-protective frenzy.

You've got to hand it to Hiaasen: He's perfected a formula for crisply written, satirical crime fiction that makes the best use of imaginatively repulsive villains, as well as less thoroughly venal scoundrels and victims who ultimately overcome their antagonists, all while stumping for the preservation of Florida's environment, particularly the Everglades. In Skinny Dip, we find Chaz (who'd rather be golfing than puttering around the "hot, buggy, funky-smelling and treacherous" reaches of nature) falsifying water samples to help Hammernut turn the 'Glades into "God’s septic tank." That scheme, though, is endangered not just by Joey's sudden disappearance, but by the suspicions of a python-loving police detective and Chaz's own outstanding inability to tame his Viagra-enhanced tumescence. Even by assigning Chaz a baby-sitter--the hulking, hirsute, and painkiller-addicted Tool--Hammernut can't keep his pet biologist out of trouble. As Joey and Stranahan unfold their revenge plot, and Tool's conscience grows in competition with Chaz's ego, the reader can only marvel at the extent of the train wreck ahead.

As much fun as Hiaasen has delivering Chaz his climactic comeuppance, what's missing from Skinny Dip is a more complex, more credible development of Mick Stranahan's character and the relationship he builds with the much younger Joey Perrone. Like Erin Grant, from Strip Tease, Joey has far more going for her than her bra-cup size; but "hero" Stranahan is of far less interest here than any of his fellow players. --J. Kingston Pierce

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:18:35 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

Returning home to Pennsylvania to sell the old family property in the wake of her parents' deaths, Lorna Temple joins forces with private detective T. J. Dawson in a twenty-year-old case involving the disappearance of two children.

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