"Nostalgia has its moments. The trick, I believe, is to shed regret."
Alex Rutledge, professional photographer, Key West, Florida. His credentials are exemplary and he's well-known throughout south Florida and the Caribbean as the 'go-to' pro in his field.
Having read all the Alex R series years ago when I was on my jag to read only Florida mysteries, based in Florida, I was so annoyed with myself when I found out that Tom Corcoran had written another book in the series two years ago. I missed that memo.
But caught up with him in this great and fun ride.
Alex Rutledge is such a fine character, someone I would want as my best friend (or more) because he's nice, willing to stick his neck out for a friend, is quick with a retort when necessary (and needed,) he's faithful and good looking. Could use more adjectives to describe him but you get the picture; just a super great guy.
All the recurring characters in the series are well drawn so although I read them a couple of years ago, I still recall who they are and how they interact and fit with Alex’s life on Dredger's Lane.
If you feel like reading a comfortable series of seven books, a read which puts you in the middle of swaying sable palms, breezes from the Gulf or the Atlantic, water blue/green everywhere you look, begin this series by a pool with a tall Margarita (or not) or a roaring fire, just begin reading. You won't be disappointed.
However, isn't there always that, a but?
in this book there was so much going on, so many characters involved, conspiring against other guys, the end got a bit confusing and messy for me. Corcoran, which is just one reason I like him, drops little reminders of who a guy might be, saying things like "Pulver, who owned the condominium" and this does help.
By the way, Corcoran is one of those multi-talented guys being a professional photographer himself, co-writing songs with Jimmy Buffett and taking cover shots of Buffett and other South Florida writers for books and CD's.
His interest in '64 Mustangs appears in the series along with references to many cars I wouldn't know if I stumbled into them. But that doesn't get in the way of a good story.
I you haven't read Tom Corcoran start from the beginning of the series, if you can because it tends to build to this book. But if not, no worries just dive in, the water’s great and swimming (swim wear optional) with Alex is just a lot of fun.
Just read this from Creative Loafing by William McKeen and he likes Alex, too.Few writers can lay claim to having created such a vivid, admirable character -- maybe Randy Wayne White with Doc Ford, or Carl Hiassen with his eco renegade, Skink. And certainly, they all owe some DNA to John D. MacDonald's Travis McGee." ...he's so free of pretension. He's an organic James Bond..."
Wish I had said that!
Tampa Bay Creative Loafing Article