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Atomic Lobster: A Novel (Serge a. Storms) Hardcover – January 22, 2008

4.2 out of 5 stars 119 customer reviews
Book 10 of 18 in the Serge Storms Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Dorsey's 10th novel to feature Serge A. Storms and Coleman (after 2007's Hurricane Punch) offers sex, violence, more violence and Three Stooges–like action. After meeting up with Rachael, a stripper and drug addict, Serge and Coleman, bored and broke, take a Florida road trip. Meanwhile, several other characters, destined to converge, start their own treks: killer Tex McGraw, sprung from prison with revenge on his mind; empty-nesters Jim and Martha Davenport, seeking a little excitement; the G-Unit, a group of investing grannies who like to cruise; three American drug dealers and three Mexican drug dealers, with a new smuggling operation; and two Davis Islands residents, one a famous ex-football player. Recurring fave Johnny Vegas pops up, too, along with several government agencies. While Dorsey's brand of comedy isn't for the faint of heart, this fast-moving, raucous tale delivers its usual punch while gleefully skewering everyone and everything along the way. (Feb.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Tim Dorsey was a reporter and editor for the Tampa Tribune from 1987 to 1999, and is the author of sixteen other novels: The Riptide Ultra-Glide, Pineapple Grenade, When Elves Attack, Electric Barracuda, Gator A-Go-Go, Nuclear Jellyfish, Atomic Lobster, Hurricane Punch, The Big Bamboo, Torpedo Juice, Cadillac Beach, The Stingray Shuffle, Triggerfish Twist, Orange Crush, Hammerhead Ranch Motel, and Florida Roadkill. He lives in Tampa, Florida.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Series: Serge a. Storms
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; First Edition edition (January 22, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060829699
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060829698
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (119 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #934,220 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Mel Odom VINE VOICE on February 3, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I've got a new hero! And a brand-new series to read! But I don't think most people are going to appreciate him as much as I do, or even be twisted enough to get the gonzo humor involved. Nor will most appreciate that hero's penchant for taking people toilet snorkeling when they disagree with him.

His name is Serge A. Storms, and he's a spree killer. However, before you go thinking too terribly of him, I point out that Serge's victims are only evil people. He only kills the bad guys, and generally then only after being provoked or they don't take his first warning. He's manic depressive but tends to stay on the "up" side of life, which makes him an uncharacteristically happy kind of guy.

Of course, being a spree killer and having a tendency to kill someone with plenty of malice but no real aforethought kind of limits the friends and romances he can have. Serge hangs with the lowlifes, like drug-bingeing Coleman in this novel (who is an absolute riot as well) and Rachel (a down-on-her-luck prostitute with a really serious drug jones). But Serge's heart is always in the right place, always willing to look after society and the environment and his friends.

One of those friends puts in an appearance in this novel. Jim Davenport, the much heckled and timid mouse of a man, has been in previous novels - where he and Serge first struck up their "friendship." In this book, Jim gets menaced by Tex McGraw, a man Jim testified against ten years ago who has now gotten out of prison and plans to enact his revenge. He even has a list. The police know this because Tex said, "I've got a list."

In addition to Serge, Coleman, and Jim, there are four older women who refer to themselves as the G-Unit.
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Format: Hardcover
Serge A. Storms is at it again with his pal Coleman in this new and zany adventure by Tim Dorsey. Rachael is a welcomed additon to the crew this time around. She is frequently at odds with Coleman, coming to blows at times.

The story is not unlike the rest of Dorsey's, but that's the reason you read an author like Dorsey. He is highly consistent, adding layers to the personalities of his perrenial characters like Serge, Coleman, Davenport and of course the G-Unit.

The humor is slapstick and silly but far from juvinile. Anyone who appreciates creative plot development and adult comedy will love this far-out novel.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
"Atomic Lobster" is a farce, and I mean that in a good sense. By the way, my 3.5 star rating is in comparison to books written in a similar vein, not to literature as a whole.
There are many alternating points of view in this novel. Tim Dorsey seems to have a pattern. One book follows Serge almost exclusively (as this novel's predecessor did) and the next will follow several characters, usually recurring characters from previous books.
"Atomic Lobster" sees the return of the wallflower Jim Davenport and his wife Martha. They were featured in Dorsey's earlier novel "Triggerfish Twist". They serve as a nice contrast to the antics of Serge and Coleman, and Serge's devotion to Jim is funny, and oddly endearing. There is also a surprise twist with one of them at the novel's end that I did not even remotely see coming.
As is typical for a Dorsey book there is a lot of humor, much of it off color, and slapstick. A few examples to share: on page 140 there is a section where Serge discourses on alpha males. It is funny, and as a guy it has for me just a few rings of truth in it. Chapter 46 of the text is a brilliantly fast paced farce straight out of the Marx Brothers or the television series "Frasier". It is filled with opening and slamming doors, near misses, and all of that fun stuff that is hysterical when done well.
The novel ends with a pandemonium filled finale on a cruise ship. It makes the last 50 pages fly by. It is a little contrived, but fun, as Dorsey brings all of the novel's subplots together for a satisfying falling action and tidy resolution.
I look forward to this series of books every summer as my beach reads. I am ready for next year already!
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Format: Audio CD
But if you have a slightly twisted sense of humor and like the bizarre, it's for you. I've not read any of the other books (yet) but this one worked well enough as a stand-alone, though having a bit more background on a few of the characters might have been nice.

The biggest downside of the story was that it was told in a very fragmented style. There were several groups of characters, mostly tangentially related, and the story not only hopped between them, but also moved backwards and forwards in time (there were a few 'four months ago...' sections). It was interesting to see how all of the character's stories intersected, but it could be a little difficult to keep straight (especially listening to it as an audiobook).

The upsides definitely outweighed the downside, though. The book was full of great characters, improbable situations, and dark humor. And when I say dark, I do mean it. Serge spends a good part of the book killing people in delightfully convoluted (think Rube Goldberg) ways, and is completely nonchalant about it. He reminded me a lot of Max from the Sam and Max comic/games ("gratuitous acts of senseless violence are my forte!"). Horrible (and yet, kind of funny) things happen to people left and right. There's rampant drug use and violence, though it certainly doesn't seem out of place with this cast of characters. There were scenes and dialog that actually made me burst out laughing - a great book to listen to if you're blue, since it's both entertaining and heartening that your life isn't as bad as some of these peoples...

And, at the end, it managed to surprise me. I thought, perhaps, I'd guessed the improbable Foxtrot, but I fell for a classic trap and got it all wrong.
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