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Lunatics Hardcover – January 10, 2012
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How do two humorists effectively collaborate on a novel? By each writing the narrative for his character, alternating the perspectives in an insane adventure. Phillip Horkman is a by-the-rules kind of guy, a pet-store owner and soccer referee. Jeffrey Peckerman is a profane forensic plumber who thinks the world is populated with jerks, with the exception of himself. The New Jersey suburban dads collide when Horkman disqualifies what would have been a game-winning score made by Peckerman’s daughter. The two embark on escalating violence that takes them on a wild car chase that gets viewed as a possible terrorist threat by the police. On the run, they travel by cruise ship, submarine, helicopter, freighter, and airplane to Cuba, Somalia, China, and the Middle East, wreaking havoc and inadvertently checking off a lot of items on the U.S. geopolitical to-do list along the way. Barry, humor columnist for the Miami Herald, and Zweibel, award-winning comedy writer originally with Saturday Night Live, are more than effective in this collaboration, although the gag of two lunatics on the run sometimes wears a bit thin. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Pulitzer Prize–winning humorist Barry and Emmy, Thurber, and Tony Award winner Zweibel bring plenty of star power to a comic novel that will be supported by a national print and electronic advertising campaign. --Vanessa Bush
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It's incredibly silly, this book, is filled with generally offensive humor. I know some friends I could recommend this to, but to some I absolutely wouldn't, if you are a "serious" person, maybe it's not for you. I'm glad I bought it.
This is a great addition to any Dave Barry collection. It should also appeal to fans of Carl Hiaasen. I bought it for my father and he liked it so much that he suggested that my husband and I read it together. We did. We thought we would read a little each night before bed but it was so good that it kept us up reading and laughing way into the night. The novel is best appreciated by readers who like their humor and adventure zany and who are not offended by a lot of salty language.
On the other hand, the book is worth the embarrassment.
This is a flat-out funny book featuring two very different men: one a prim and virtuous pet store owner about whom the phrase "politically correct" may have been coined, and the other a crude, narcissistic, and socially-inappropriate "forensic plumber," i.e., a plumber who testifies in court cases.
From their first meeting, these two detest one another, but circumstances repeatedly throw them together under the most unusual and hilarious circumstances. Together, this inept duo ends up front and center on the world stage, repeatedly and unintentionally affecting everything from zoo animals to national and international security interests.
I've always liked Dave Barry but the addition here of co-author Zweibel, a renowned comic writer, has added a deeper and more sustained note of hilarity to the book.
For good or ill, this one has "future movie" written all over it. But there is no way a movie could be as good as this book.
If you are a somber soul, don't bother with this book, but if you revel in riotous ridiculousness, this is the book for you.