Written in 1995, this book takes a recent current event as a starting point and reimagines it humorously, much like Lucky You. In this case, it’s a devastating hurricane (unnamed) that ravages southern Florida and brings together a motley bunch of characters around a crime or two.
The subplots: A woman on her honeymoon begins to doubt the wisdom of her marriage when her husband decides to drive from Disney World to the Miami area so he can take video of the damage and heartbreak; a crazy ex-governor gone native kidnaps him; a pair of unlikely conspirators decide to pose as a homeowning couple to participate in an insurance scam; the son of a woman killed in the storm seeks revenge upon those who sold her a shoddy mobile home; and a crooked former home inspector makes sacrifices to a voodoo god and tries to get some of his grift on.
So there’s a crime involved, but it doesn’t really carry the story. Hiaasen jump cuts the subplots and the characters interact, but the inevitable climax on a key comes too early, the denouement runs a bit long, and the book lacks some of the rush that his others bring.
So it’s somewhere between Lucky You and Nature Girl (which I didn’t like so much). Still, it’s a readable and enjoyable book, just not one of Hiaasen’s best.