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Looking for novels set in Florida


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Posted on Aug 23, 2010 3:01:15 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 23, 2010 3:02:20 PM PDT
lifewontwait says:
Can't believe no one has yet mentioned James W. Hall's Thorn mysteries.

Other mystery/thriller authors who bring their Florida settings to life include Charles Willeford (Hoke Moseley series), Les Standiford (Jack Deal series), Christine Kling (Seychelle Sullivan series), Barbara Parker (Suspicion of ... series featuring Gail Connor and Anthony Quintana), Paul Levine (Solomon vs. Lord series) and Edna Buchanan (Britt Montero series).

I strongly second the recommendations for Randy Wayne White and Tom Corcoran.

Posted on Aug 23, 2010 6:25:13 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Oct 29, 2011 10:10:36 AM PDT]

Posted on Jun 13, 2011 7:56:34 AM PDT
R. E. Conary says:
Try this trio of books by author Charlie Hudson:

Shades of Murder
Shades of Truth
Shades of Gold
Police detective Bev Henderson tracks murder and mayhem on Florida's laid-back Verde Key. Solid police procedurals with a laid-back Florida twist, Verde Key is where Ed McBain's characters head when they can afford a winter break. Lots of sun, water, scuba diving, Jimmy Buffet, booze, good seafood, and murder.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 13, 2011 10:25:57 AM PDT
Try all the Florida books by: Randy Wayne White ... our whole family likes his books and we've just about gotten of his about the same characters ... Really good and set mostly in the west coast of Florida in the Sanibel and Captiva area ...

Posted on Jun 13, 2011 3:17:21 PM PDT
Mike Roche says:
My recently released mystery novel titled The Blue Monster is set in Tampa. Priced at 0.99! The book was reviewed my Michael Connelly and Jim Swain.

For Tampa Detective Kate Alexander, a call to the murder scene of a teenage girl rips at her heart. The killer is free due to an acquittal by Judge Judith Levy. In revenge of that verdict, the judge's family is now the hunted. A seemingly isolated double homicide at a cheap motel leads Kate Alexander to focus on a psychotic and deranged suspect. In a cat and mouse game, the killer eludes capture as he seeks retribution against the judge. Kate places her own family in peril as she tracks the cunning criminal in a race against time. Enjoy a heart pumping emotional thrill ride as evil attempts to evade justice.

Thanks for the support, Mike

Posted on Jun 17, 2011 3:01:58 AM PDT
M. Ballard says:
Have you tried H. Terrell Griffin?

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 17, 2011 5:47:36 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 17, 2011 6:15:23 PM PDT
gilly8 says:
Agree, as a lifelong Floridian (really--grew up in RURAL Miami, now live in North Florida; one of my sisters in law came from Cuba as an emigrant age 7) the Travis McGee series, which is NOT on kindle (!) and Carl Hiaasen's novels are the best, most realistic. They both are apppalled at the environmental destruction that is ongoing as 1000 new people per day move here....or did before the recession, don't know the stats now.
McDonald's books are more dated: he wrote mainly in the 60's. Hiaasin is more up to date.
McDonald made a wonderful point, which I'm paraphrasing: the new person comes to Florida and falls in love with it. After a few years as more people come, as the native plants and trees are destroyed for houses and strip malls, they become upset....but the next new group only sees the Florida THEY come to, and thinks its so wonderful...and on and on.
My uncles were in Fl. in the '30's, when there were real Seminoles in the Glades, living traditonally (actually the tribe name is Miccosukee)....and way pre-Disney when that entire part of Florida was orange groves.....now its wall to wall tourist crap and neon lights....
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Frankly, NOW to sit and feel ocean breezes you'd have to be rich enough to vacation at, or rent, or buy, a condo on the beach...and regular people, for the most part, can't go onto these "private beaches". Of course there are some "public beaches", but who would imagine someone could BUY beach/ocean and keep others out? And also, frankly everything is air conditioned though growing up I had NO A/C, not in the house, the car, the schools.....we coped though, but I bet I couldn't now!
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Sorry, I could go on and on.....but the books by both authors are good.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 17, 2011 5:51:31 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 17, 2011 5:59:23 PM PDT
gilly8 says:
Right: and she wrote "Sea of Grass" about the Everglades which helped save it, single handedly, from the developers who were draining it as fast as they could, so they could put in more subdivisions etc....She was most responsible for it becoming a Nat'l Park.

Now, the big problem is the encrouchment of alien species. People let loose their boa constrictors, their birds and lizards etc from other places, and the basic, native ecology made for it to survive is being destroyed as we speak.

In Key west are still a few of the tiny "Key West deer" but not many.

The whole picture is distressing and discouraging.

The Everglades: River of Grass (Special 50th Anniversary Edition)

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 17, 2011 5:54:09 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 17, 2011 6:16:17 PM PDT
gilly8 says:
Did you ever read any Marjories Kinnen Rawlings novels? She lived in basic "cracker" Florida in the ?'20's-30's and knew the people who'd lived there for generations and barely got by on the land and hunting. Her most famous is "The Yearling"...she gives a good look at the Florida of that era....

Her home (log cabin style) is still here and is a (minor) tourist attraction.[[ASIN:B000855AL6 The Yearling;]
]Cross CreekMarjorie Kinnan Rawlings: Sojourner at Cross Creek
Cross Creek Cookery

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 17, 2011 6:09:03 PM PDT
gilly8 says:
Also, (as I think of more!) there are the books, short stories and plays by famous African-American woman writer, Zora Neale Hurston, who was born in Alabama but lived her formative years in Florida, during the segregation era.
Their Eyes Were Watching God
Zora Neale Hurston : Novels and Stories : Jonah's Gourd Vine / Their Eyes Were Watching God / Moses, Man of the Mountain / Seraph on the Suwanee / Selected Stories (Library of America)

Posted on Jul 18, 2011 5:54:39 AM PDT
Cinnamon says:
Angie, do you mean the character of Britt Montero? I can't think of her author's name. Jan Burke writes about Irene Kelly, in La Pieras, Calif.
James Swain writes 2 series, and one is set in Fla. Paul Levine has the Lassiter series and the Soloman and Lord series, both of which take place in Fla.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 3:53:41 PM PDT
Read Florida says:
Must reads set in Florida with a true sense of place: Killing Mister Watson trilogy by Peter Matthiessen and Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston.

Posted on Mar 11, 2012 5:56:42 PM PDT
Jacquie says:
Jonathon King's Max Freeman series. They are all good, but my favorite was SHADOW MEN which includes some of the history of the Everglades.

Posted on Mar 15, 2012 10:59:56 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 12, 2013 8:08:18 AM PDT
MontclairMD says:
I ran across Sunshine Highway, a really terrific mystery set in the Florida Panhandle. If you've ever driven through that area, this is dead on. The reviews sold me. If you like Carl Hiaasen, you'll like this.

Set in the land of Florida's SINKHOLES! What better place to hide a body?

Posted on Mar 17, 2012 4:52:02 PM PDT
Laurence Shames has a few very funny, very noir novels set in Florida. I highly recommend them.

Posted on Mar 17, 2012 5:09:43 PM PDT
I've enjoyed these mysteries:
Book 'Em: An Eamonn Shute Mystery by Tony McFadden
Castle Cay by Lee Hanson
Swan Song by Lee Hanson

Posted on Mar 18, 2012 6:42:00 PM PDT
KathyC says:
I enjoyed The Butterfly Forest (Mystery/Thriller). The mystery was good enough to hold my interest, though it probably could have done with fewer twists. I live near part of the setting and am familiar with other areas in which the story takes place. The author does have a sense of "wild" Florida. No theme parks, cruise ship terminals or garish surf shops (ahem, Ron Jon's) in Real Florida. The price is good at under $5.00, and it's also a free KLL for Prime members.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 18, 2012 7:23:36 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 18, 2012 7:32:01 PM PDT
Try Dog Island by G Thomas Gill. Florida comes to life in my new novel.

Posted on Mar 19, 2012 3:28:40 PM PDT
SarahMac says:
Blaize Clement's Dixie Hemingway (no relation) series is set in Florida and, IMHO, has a great sense of place. Dixie is a pet-sitter, which makes the series sound as if it's likely to be a cozy but it rather straddles the line there and I wouldn't necessarily place it in that niche. Unfortunately, Ms. Clement passed away last year, though her son is going to see to it to that two more books are published in the series.

Posted on Jun 22, 2012 1:53:43 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 22, 2012 1:59:23 PM PDT
CLG says:
T. J. MacGregor who also wrote books set in Florida as Alison Drake (Tango Keys Mysteries) High Strangeness
Black Moon
Fevered

She also has written an T. J. MacGregor and Trish Janeshutz. The Trish Janeshutz books In Shadow and Hidden Lake have psychic experiences in the plot.

I think nearly all of the books are out of print but I remember really enjoying them and the Tango Key locale.

Not cozy. ALison Drake books tend toward the noir.

Posted on Jun 22, 2012 10:04:02 PM PDT
The Travis McGee novels of the late John D. Macdonald. You can't do better than that!

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 22, 2012 10:12:25 PM PDT
Diane Hara says:
Randy Wayne White, Doc Ford books, great stories, scenery... you can feel the mosquitoes biting!

Posted on Jun 22, 2012 10:43:08 PM PDT
I don't think anyone has mentioned Tom Cocoran's Alex Rutledge series. The books are set mainly in Key West, but do move up the Keys for some of the stories. Marathon, Tavernier and some of the others in the chain.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 23, 2012 12:38:35 AM PDT
Try Carl Hiassen, Elmore Leonard or the old novels by John D.MacDonald. A non-beachy, classic FL novel is The Yearling--gives a great sense of interior, central FL.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 23, 2012 1:52:39 PM PDT
C. DUPONT says:
Lifewontwait, our reading list looks a lot alike.
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Discussion in:  Mystery forum
Participants:  90
Total posts:  222
Initial post:  Aug 12, 2010
Latest post:  Nov 5, 2014

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