I just finished listening to the audiobook of Carl Hiaasen's new novel Nature Girl, read by Lee Adams. Hiaasen is my favorite crime writer of all time, an hilarious absurdist whose experiences as a columnist for the Miami Herald provide him with a bottomless supply of rounders, cads, fools and patsies for the cast of characters in his books.
Nature Girl is the story of Honey Santana, a mildly deranged single mom who is so infuriated at being insulted by a telemarketer that she lures him from Texas to Florida with the intention of giving him a stern dressing down. But her quest is complicated by her decent but crooked ex-husband, a dope-runner; the telemarketer's girlfriend, a bombshell whose five minutes of fame were in writing a fake tell-all sex memoir called Storm Ghoul; a half-blood Seminole who goes on the lam after a tourist drops dead on his fanboat tour; a lecherous fishmarket owner whose amputated thumb and forefinger have been swapped by an incompetent surgeon; and the telemarketer's wife and the private eye she sends to spy on her wayward husband.
This is vintage Hiaasen — filled with convulsively funny comic situations, grave ruminations on the state of the Florida Everglades, lovable and detestable characters, and keen suspense. A great holiday read.