Solid Hiassen; humorously violent, Florida shadiness and skulduggery. I did like the descriptions of the quiet Keys environs, especially the mini-deer...moreSolid Hiassen; humorously violent, Florida shadiness and skulduggery. I did like the descriptions of the quiet Keys environs, especially the mini-deer (having just learned about them elsewhere, for that "plate o' shrimp" sense of coincidence). I was also appropriately skeeved by the descriptions of the life of a restaurant inspector, which I'm sure would please Mr. Hiaasen.
There were a couple of odd passages, though, where it almost looked as there was a hiccup in the manuscript; there were a couple of really repetitious, almost dumbed-down moments of plot exposition, which Hiassen doesn't usually do. They weren't long, but they felt strangely out of character.(less)
Consistently good. It's nice when the author continues to develop exactly the parts of his material that you like best: In my case, the architectural...moreConsistently good. It's nice when the author continues to develop exactly the parts of his material that you like best: In my case, the architectural asides (clearly we share similar tastes), the little book/geek jokes, etc.. Throwaway references to Daleks, Indiana Jones, etc., just make me smile. Taking on the pretensions of the modern art world was a bonus.
My main complaint here is about a grammatical trap. The author sets up an exchange between Grant and Nightingale in which Nightingale corrects a particular grammatical error; that in itself would be fine, because that's the sort of thing he would do. The problem is that Grant wasn't making that particular mistake in the first couple of books (I should double-check this, but honestly it annoys me so much I'm pretty sure I'd have noticed). Suddenly, he's making it all the time, so of course he gets called out on it, but it feels like a set-up, since it wasn't a problem before.
Of course, if that's my biggest complaint with a book, it's in awfully good shape. Okay, and maybe some of the big tunnel scene could have been a tad bit shorter (they're going down another corridor?) but again, that's really a nit-pick.
Oh, and one warning: Ignore the back jacket copy (not the author's fault, of course). The last paragraph seems to be describing either another book altogether.(less)
I enjoyed it, but I admit it started a bit slowly for my taste. For a while I kept thinking, "Now why did I want to read this again?"
But then I relaxe...moreI enjoyed it, but I admit it started a bit slowly for my taste. For a while I kept thinking, "Now why did I want to read this again?"
But then I relaxed, stopped trying to figure that out, and just took it for what it was; a rather charming account of a young Englishwoman, from a rather staid middle-class background, falling in with a bohemian academic family and discovering a new view of the world.
The story is rather thin (which to say nearly plot-free), but many of the descriptions are are quite sharply observed. The narrator wasn't, particularly, but I liked spending time with the Goldmans, and I could see why she did, too. I confess there was a certain degree of self-recognition--I know some interesting, dramatic and kind folks too, and I understand the feeling of falling under another family's spell. (less)