Sick Puppy (Skink, Book 4)

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They're all relatively young, but with enough disillusionment and experience in their lives to make up for it. They're usually former something-or-others often journalists , who failed or burned out, adrift, wandering through life, walking wounded, although they generally view their lethargy as fine with them. It's usually a women in trouble that snaps them out of it, with or without some provocation from Skink. Suddenly, they have a cause to champion, and sooner or later Sgt.

Garcia shows up to bear witness to the body count.

In Double Whammy , it's R. Watch out for seven-foot tall naked hitmen with bad skin on Sea-Doos! In Native Tongue , burned-out reporter JOE WINDER investigates the mysterious disappearance of a pair of blue-tongued mango voles from the cut-rate Disneyland wannabe where he's holed up as a PR flack, while at the same time keeping his eyes peeled for a shred of dignity.

SHAD , the hapless strip joint bouncer who hasn't had an erection since he started working there, goes above and beyond the call of duty to help a dancer out of a jam in Strip Tease AUGUSTINE , the idealistic, rich ne'er-do-well former law-student with too much time on his hands, is looking for something to believe in, and may have just found it in the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew in 's Stormy Weather. TOM KROME , a burned-out newspaper reporter who's been dispatched to do a human-interest story on an eccentric black lottery winner, finds out some white supremist wannabes are out to kill her, in Lucky You In 's Skinny Dip , ex-cop Mick Stranahan from Skin Tight returns, to help a damsel in distress who washes ashore on a bale of marijuana.

But it's hard to tell who the hero is at times. Much could be said about all of Hiaasen's novels.

Nature Girl boasts fugitive Seminoles, a half-ass telemarketeer and a foul-smelling stalker, while Star Island boasts the return of former governor Skink who makes his way out of the swamps to save a drug-addled former child pop star. Skink's back again -- and even gets top billing -- in Skink--No Surrender , this time out to save a young girl from an Internet predator and a fate worse than death. Razor Girl sees the return of Yancy, still out to get his old job back, pinning his hopes on cracking a high-profile homicide involving an East Coast mobster really into swimwear, a Wisconsin accordion player trying to pass himself off as a redneck on a TV reality show and a beach sand thief.

Hiaasen, born and raised in South Florida, attended Emory University and graduated with a journalism degree from the University of Florida in He's been with The Miami Herald since He currently writes a twice-weekly column for them. He lives with his family and pet snakes somewhere in the Florida Keys. One more thing about Hiaasen's gig at The Herald -- humour columnist Dave Barry also works there, and in fact, his novel Big Trouble is essentially a kinder, gentler Hiaasen novel.

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Add a little more wickedness, and it coulda been written by Carl himself. Makes you wonder what's in the water cooler down there, doesn't it? Meanwhile, the film Striptease , based on Hiaasen's novel, was supposed to be a major motion picture starring Demi Moore in pasties and Burt Reynolds in a Newt-Gingrich hairpiece. I say "Meh. Skip the movie, read the book again," but Hiaasen insists that the scene featuring Burt Reynolds slathered from his neck to his toes with Vaseline is "one of the high points in modern American cinema. You can also add children's author to his list of achievements.

His first YA novel, Hoot , is very much a typical Hiaasen novel, albeit aimed at a younger audience, a sort of ecological mystery, with an unlikely trio of misfit kids racing to save some endangered miniature owls from the the Mother Paula's All-American Pancake House scheduled to be built over their burrows.

Sick Puppy

The book was subsequently awarded The Newbery Honor by the Association for Library Service to Children, which recognizes excellence in children's literature. He's since followed up on the success of Hoot success with Flush , Scat , Chomp and most recently, the previously mentioned Skink--No Surrender. Grown-ups might stop you in an airport and tell you they like the novels, but kids will sit down and write a three-page letter, complete with illustrations. He's co-written two songs with the late, great hard-boiled rocker Warren Zevon, "Seminole Bingo" and "Rottweiler Blues.

Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.

Twilly Spree, the trust-fund vagabond son of a beachfront developer, has vowed to make reparations for his father by cleaning up Florida one litterbug at a time. When state lobbyist Palmer Stoat leaves a trail of McDonald's detritus in the wake of his Range Rover, Spree can't resist teaching him a lesson -- several times over. The young eco-avenger soon learns that Stoat is greasing a deal to build a bridge to a Gulf Coast island targeted by an unscrupulous developer with a Barbie fixation.

That's when Spree steals Stoat's Labrador retriever and his trophy wife and attempts to derail the project. But you know what? Then I would go to colleges and universities and meet kids here at the book fair and they are very interested in what the future holds for their kids, what the Everglades will look like in 20 years or what Biscayne Bay will look like.

I had fun with Twilly, reliving some of the same angst and fury I felt as a kid. I think going young with that character helped me keep the fire stoked. No doubt it was the prospect of once again skewering the developers and crooked politicians that brought another character stumbling forth from the deep swamp: former Governor Clinton Tyree, also known as Skink.

The funky elder statesman and the young idealist share this moment on the road:.


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But I will tell you there's probably no peace for people like you and me in this world. Somebody's got to be angry or nothing gets fixed. That's what we were put here for, to stay pissed off.

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Skink hooted. Everybody in this state should take a course in that. You fail, they haul your sorry ass to the border and throw you out of Florida. He just is what he is. Also, I wanted him older and tired and confronted with a younger version of himself.

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The author shrugs off parallels between Twilly and himself. Hiaasen's father and grandfather were both attorneys in Fort Lauderdale, but he says they were just as surprised and baffled by the rampant growth in south Florida as he was.

Sick Puppy - Tampa Bay Library Consortium - OverDrive

They live off the Hemingway mystique, they trade on the Hemingway mystique, constantly. If Hemingway were alive, he'd take a flame-thrower to Duval Street, and that's the truth. Fifty T-shirt shops?