Mistakenly believing Tampa to be the third best city in the United States for raising a family, Jim Davenport moves his family to a lovely old home on Triggerfish Lane. But beyond the lofty facade of the Davenport's new residence lies the seedy underbelly of crime and murder, car salesmen and consultants, rental properties and urban renewal. It all comes together in Tim Dorsey's delightful "Triggerfish Twist."
The story comes complete with a laundry list of main characters, a large and unwieldy cast that, in many writers' hands, would collapse under its own weight. But Dorsey juggles them neatly, like an expert clown, and the tangled plotlines come together like, well, a game of Twister on the 4th of July without pants. (Read the book, you'll understand.)
Davenport is your average guy, a conscientious business consultant and family man. His wife, Martha, is a bit high-strung, it's true, but they and their children settle down on Triggerfish with high hopes for the future. Little do they know that Lance Boyle, who owns many of the properties on their street, is vying to buy up the rest so he can raze the houses and make a tidy sum on townhouses. To further that goal, he fills his rentals with the worst lowlifes he can find -- hoping to force a sharp decline in neighborhood values and encourage the few remaining homeowners, like the Davenports, to sell and move away.
There's more, but it'd be easier if you just read the book. Dorsey, an author of some note, is my latest discovery and a wonderful addition to my must-read list. The spiritual cousin of fellow Florida writer Carl Hiaasen, Dorsey is hilarious and inventive. This is the perfect time to visit his little corner of Florida.
by Tom Knapp, Rambles.NET editor