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Atomic Lobster – Crime and Humor in Florida

Atomic Lobster is the latest novel by bestselling Florida writer Tim Dorsey. Dorsey brings a sense of humor to crime and suspense in the Sunshine State. If you’ve read Dorsey’s other novels, you’ll be thrilled at the number of characters who return to the scene of the crime in this novel. If you haven’t read his other books, this is a fun crime story, with a lot of humor and unique characters. When you add in the flip-book of a lobster claw at the bottom of the pages, it’s fun for all ages!

Dorsey’s main character in Atomic Lobster, Serge, is a combination of mob boss, stand-up comic, and Jeopardy contestant – he murders people, has sex in the back of a car while his friend is driving, and collects dirt to create a Legacy for himself. Serge has his own moral compass that guides the story; he knows that the mild-mannered Jim Davenport helped him in the past, so now Serge will do anything to protect Davenport when he is threatened. Serge’s choices lead to some mind-boggling situations, plus a lot of damaged people and homes.

Atomic Lobster starts as a collection of vignettes; we catch a glimpse of each character as they move towards each other. Serge’s traveling companions are his rather dim-witted friend Coleman who is on a quest for the biggest bong, and a pole-dancer named Rachael. When the characters converge on Lobster Lane, we find a famous football player enjoying a game of catch, Serge “house-sitting”, a secret agent named FoxTrot, an ex-con released from prison, and a support group for non-confrontational men; a very unusual mix! As the story continues, we add senior citizens on a cruise, some smugglers, and an accidental virgin named Johnny.

Tim Dorsey’s characters each have enough quirks to make them feel real, but overdone. I’m not sure I’d want to have a beer with all of them, but I could easily picture them having a beer together! Dorsey uses each vignette with a character or group of characters to move the plot forward. The overlap between these characters shows that in Dorsey’s world there are no real coincidences; everything is inter-connected. Not many other authors would have one set of characters drop a body off a bridge, then have it fall into the windshield of another character’s car!

I really enjoyed Atomic Lobster, and recommend it to anyone who likes a bit of humor with their crime. If you want to get a taste of Tim Dorsey’s writing, you can read the beginning here. There are several other authors who mix crime and humor, and if you are a fan of any of those, you can’t go wrong with Tim Dorsey’s books and Atomic Lobster!

This book was received from the publisher for review.

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