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When Elves Attack: A Joyous Christmas Greeting from the Criminal Nutbars of the Sunshine State (Serge Storms) Paperback – October 30, 2012
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This month's Book With Buzz: "Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng
From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture - perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. See more
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Amazon Exclusive: A Letter from Serge A. Storms
Dear Friends and Enemies,
Season’s Greetings! It’s me, Serge! Don’t you just hate these form letters people stuff in Christmas cards? Nothing screams “you’re close to my heart” like a once-a-year Xerox. Plus, all the lame jazz that’s going on in their lives. “Had a great time in Memphis.” “Bobby lost his retainer down a storm drain.” “I think the neighbors are dealing drugs.” But this letter is different. You are special to me. I’m just forced to use a copy machine and gloves because of advancements in forensics. I love those TV shows!
Has a whole year already flown by? Much to report! Let’s get to it!
Number One: I ended a war.
You guessed correct, the War on saying “Merry Christmas!” instead of “Happy Holidays!” When I first heard about it, I said to Coleman, “That’s just not right! We must enlist!” I rushed to the front lines, running downtown yelling “Merry Christmas” at everyone I saw. And they’re all saying “Merry Christmas” back. Hmmm. That’s odd: Nobody’s stopping us from saying “Merry Christmas.” Then I did some research, and it turns out the real war is against people saying, “Happy Holidays.” The nerve: trying to be inclusive. So, everyone ... Merry Christmas! Happy Hanukkah! Good times! Soul Train! Purple mountain majesties! The Pompatus of Love!
There. War over. And just before it became a quagmire.
Next: Decline of Florida Roundup.
They tore down the Big Bamboo Lounge near Orlando. Where was everybody on that one?
Remember the old “Big Daddy’s” lounges around Florida with the logo of that bearded guy? They’re now Flannery’s or something.
They closed the 20,000 Leagues ride at Disney World. And opened Buzz Lightyear. I offered to bring my own submarine. Okay, actually threatened, but they only wanted to discuss it in the security office. I've been doing running lately at theme parks.
But let’s not get hung up on the negative. It’s the holidays after all, so it was time to head back to Tampa. Because hiding out from the cops on your home turf during the season is always a warm-and-fuzzy. The malls have changed–when did yogurt go to five bucks?
In advance: Happy New Year! (Unlike the cruddy last one),
Serge A. Storms--This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
Gleefully unhinged criminal Serge Storms and his perpetually drunk and/or stoned buddy Coleman return for another bizarre trip through Central Florida suburbia in this silly and sometimes touching send-up of Christmas tropes. On the run from the law once again, an elf-suit-clad Serge and Coleman meet up with mild-mannered Jim Davenport, whose bland middle-class lifestyle Serge idolizes (much to Jim’s horror). When Serge and Coleman take up temporary residence on Jim’s street, chaos follows in the guises of a supersized Christmas tree, Xtreme Caroling, a Christmas lights display that doubles as a torture device, and several of Serge’s trademark murders. Dorsey’s latest zany picaresque does a great job of satirizing the absurdity of recession-era hiring policies and has some genuinely hilarious moments—usually delivered by a team of foulmouthed nonagenarians known as the G-Unit—but its over-the-top humor often feels forced. Additionally, although Serge is a likable protagonist, he is, nonetheless, a stereotype of a violent person with untreated mental illnesses, a fact that some readers may find offensive. --JoSelle Vanderhooft --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
Top customer reviews
He and his sidekick Coleman are preparing for the holiday season, dressed up in elf costumes. The idea is that since crooks are blending in with the crowds to pick out victims, Serge and Coleman will blend in to pick out the crooks. And it works!
Then, meeting up with an old friend (???), Serge decides he wants to be normal like Jim. This entails renting a house across from Jim and spying on him so he can trot over in time for dinner. Of course, he brings his and Coleman's share: leftovers from KFC.
For some strange reason, Jim's wife doesn't like Serge and Coleman and things kind of go downhill quickly.
As always, the bad guys are taken care of (in unusual fashions that fit the crimes) and Serge and Coleman emerge victorious.
The book has a rushed to market feel to it, and one wonders if his publisher was just trying to capitalize on the holiday themed book bonanza. The text is half the length of a normal Dorsey novel, and the change is not for the better. As a result of the apparent rush, the book is poorly written and is filled with obvious high school creative writing class moments and phrases. It reads like a treatment for a television script actually. Abrupt with no details, just giving you the basic outline as it were.
The plot is really a shorter version of earlier novels, recycling characters from previous works including the geriatric ladies group the G-unit, and the Davenport family, headed up by the doormat Jim. I don't have a problem with reusing characters, but at least augment them. Here Serge's sidekick Coleman (who I have loved in previous books) is reduced to restating as a character what the narrator has just said. He says the obvious and redundant, "Look Serge", etc. and that does not a character make.
The last 20 pages are just flat out lazy writing, complete with hokey ending. However, the "Note on the Type" is clever, and at only 194 pages it is a decent holiday diversion. But don't expect a lot.
Christmas is a time for home, so Surge rents a home across the street, from his old friend Jim, who is the regular sort of family man that Surge admirers and envies. Since Christmas is also a time for family, Surge recruits County and City, two dazzling, dangerous ladies which he has shared a long relationship with, to join him and his sidekick Coleman for the holidays. Surge adds a whole new dimension to the art of tree decorating and street caroling while watching over Jim and his family who are being stalked.
Meanwhile old friends Eunice, Edna and Ethel decide to escape all the kindness of the old ladies home and get some real living done before it's too late. As Surge collects the home, family and old friends needed for his plan to do Christmas a few holiday wreakers have to be dealt with and eventually everyone ends up dressed in elf costumes.
It's fun and funny, but the bad guys aren't as bad as usual and the engineering is not quite up to Surge's expected level of expertise, but it's Christmas, and this story has plenty of Christmas spirit.