Thursday, November 19, 2009

Tricky Business

Dave Barry reminds me of vacation. Whether it's south Florida or somewhere in Mexico, I find myself reading his column in the Miami Herald while hanging by the pool or lounging near the ocean. He's hilarious. I read Big Trouble quite a few years ago and I still laugh when I think about the frog eating the dog food. And when I saw Tricky Business sitting on the bookshelf in our "lending library" at work, I had to grab it. I was anticipating laughing out loud as much as I did the first time.

The introduction had me giggling. Barry wrote a forward to former readers warning them that this book contained "violence and the 'f' word." That readers shouldn't proceed any further if these things would possibly be offensive. I was hooked. The first chapter was about a lazy, unmotivated guy who lives with his mother, plays in a band and sleeps all day. All his mother wants to do is fix him waffles. I laugh. Then I get to chapter 2. And chapter 3. And so on. A little less than half way through the humor turned to violence. Big, bad and bloody. Really difficult to read, to the extent that I almost didn't finish. But the book was short enough that I ended up reading the last half in one evening and I was done and I don't necessarily want to think about it again. Maybe it's just me, but humor and murder don't really mix. Even though the tone was light the entire time, the subject matter became dark and nearly unbearable. There were certainly some characters that held my attention, like the drunk guy who never got his sea legs, but they weren't enough to redeem the decapitations and torture. Seriously!! This is supposed to be a comedy.

Sorry to say I can't recommend this one. I need to get back to Florida and just read Barry's column on the beach instead.

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