If You Like Carl Hiaasen...
Today is 8/1/2014
If you like the madcap satiric tales of Carl Hiaasen featuring con artists, corruption and wacky crimes, try these:
The Monkey Wrench Gang by Edward Abbey (ABB)
Misfit eco-terrorists take the law into their own hands and wage a private war against oil, power and coal companies, road builders, land developers and strip miners in an attempt to return Arizona and Utah to their natural conditions.
Big Trouble by Dave Barry (BAR)
Follow the slapstick antics of an ad man, two teenagers, some hit men, a drifter, a female cop and a pair of Russian bar owners whose real business is selling guns and bombs as they take a comic romp through South Florida in pursuit of a mysterious suitcase that contains a nuclear bomb.
Thank You for Smoking by Christopher Buckley (BUC)
PR man Nick Naylor shamelessly attempts to elevate his standing at work by promoting smoking in a series of emotional appearances on national television. He becomes the target of anti-tobacco terrorists who kidnap and attempt to murder him in this hilarious satire of political correctness and the tobacco industry.
The Mulching of America by Harry Crews (CRE)
Middle-aged salesman Hickum Looney exposes the corruption and shallowness of the New South when he strives to win the Soaps for Life sales contest. Looney is a con man who peddles his product to vulnerable citizens as a panacea for life's ailments.
Black Sunshine by S.V. Date (DAT)
Percy and Bub Billings are siblings, rivals and heirs to Florida's retiring governor. Percy is the diligent brother who worked his way up the political ladder while Bub is the older, dumber and more popular one. This tale of dirty politics includes a hurricane, a love story and a battle fought on the high seas.
Florida Roadkill by Tim Dorsey (MYS DOR)
It is 1997 and a suitcase containing five million dollars is dropped off in the wrong car. This leads to a hot pursuit up and down the Florida coast by a cast of zany crooks and con men who end up in Miami during the seventh game of the World Series.
Pest Control by Bill Fitzhugh (FIT)
Bob Dillon, an unemployed pest control expert, answers an ad for an exterminator not knowing that the advertiser is looking for a hit man. His new boss doesn't realize that Bob exterminates bugs, not people, and brokers a million-dollar contract for him resulting in a comedy of errors set in New York City.
Maximum Bob by Elmore Leonard (LEO)
Maximum Bob, a Palm Beach County, Florida judge, is a bigoted redneck who someone wants dead. The list of possible killers is a long one. Many are clients of a female probation officer who investigates the attempts on the judge's life despite being a victim of his unwanted romantic attentions.
Island by Thomas Perry (PER)
A con artist couple on the lam from the mob and a strange group of misfits are residents of a tiny island in the Caribbean founded as a nation-state and haven for tax evasion, money laundering and the hiding of assets from the authorities. This multinational cash machine attracts powerful enemies, and the shooting begins.
Buck Fever by Ben Rehder (MYS REH)
Texas game warden John Marlin knows that this year's hunting season is going to be different when poachers accidentally shoot a guy dressed as a deer. After
discovering white powder in a deer poached from the
game ranch of a crooked lobbyist, Marlin works to stop a drug-smuggling conspiracy.
Honey Don't by Tim Sandlin (SAN)
After the actions of her jealous mob boyfriend accidentally result in the president's death at her apartment, Honey helps sneak the body out to deposit it in the freezer of her ex-boyfriend. A disenchanted journalist and some government types attempting a cover-up enter the fray in this send-up of life in the nation's capital.
The Naked Detective by Laurence Shames (MYS SHA)
On the advice of his accountant, retiree Pete Amsterdam poses as a detective in order to deduct the cost of a new wine cellar. He reluctantly stumbles his way through the Key West crime scene after a young woman-in-distress asks him to investigate the murder of a friend by the mob.
The Heat Islands by Randy Wayne White (MYS WHI)
Politics, land development, sport fishing and friendship are key elements in this suspenseful tale of marine biologist Doc Ford who finds his quiet life in Sanibel Island interrupted by the murder of a highly disliked resident.