Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Star Island by Carl Hiaasen

The wild world of mega-celebrity is under hilarious scrutiny in Carl Hiaasen’s Star Island.

Pop star Cherry Pye, born Cheryl Bunterman, is a so-so singer with a superstar lifestyle. Her parents oversee her lucrative career and indulge the excesses of her lavish ways, taking a healthy cut of the profits for themselves. Cherry is so sought after by stalking paparazzi that her parents employ a double to pose as the starlet when trouble hits, which occurs often.

Hapless photographer Bang Abbott considers Cherry his ideal subject and hatches the perfect plan to kidnap her for the photo shoot of a lifetime, worthy of a Vanity Fair cover! While Cherry is soaking up the party culture of South Beach, the luckless Abbott nabs Ann the body-double by mistake. This blunder sets in motion a string of absurd events that are uproariously funny and riotously entertaining.

Using Ann as his hostage Abbott negotiates with Cherry’s parents to set up the photo shoot of his dreams, but his bad fortune takes another hilarious turn as he tries to sell the pictures of his idol. Also in the mix is Skink, Ann’s savior in a previous escapade. Skink swoops down donning his flapping trench coat and gun-metal gray braids to dispense of anyone who threatens Ann. Appearing to be a crazed outlaw for vigilante justice, you wouldn’t know to look at him that Skink was a former governor of the state 20 years before!

Outlandish characters abound in this Hiaasen’s twelfth novel, and no character is more richly drawn and intense than the exciting, enigmatic environs of southern Florida. Look for Carl Hiaasen's books in the Virginia Beach Public Library catalog along with Gator A Go-Go by Tim Dorsey.

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