Skink, No Surrender, first half

Skink, No Surrender is a charming eco-thriller by Carl Haissen. With its quirky characters and chilling mystery, it is well worth the read. The book starts us off in Flordia, where our main protagonist, Richard, is tring to contact his cousin, Malley, after she was grounded, and soon what seems to be a normal book turns into a edge-of-your-seat thriller as Richard learns that his cousin had left her house with a man who she didn’t know. With help of the former governor of Flordia turned eco-avenger, Skink, who he meets while watching turtle eggs hatch, they set off to recover his cousin from the clutches of her kiddnaper, who has the aduacity to steal a former soldier’s name, a car, and a licence plate. While I read this, I admit that I found the begining to be a little to slow, but it is still a worthwhile read. The characters are fleged our extremely well, with Richard painting a colorful image of Malley, a geinus girl who constantly runs away and tries to make counselors think she’s psycotic or Skink, the man who can’t deal with eco-crime and has no idea what wikipedia is. As they drive to the area they think Malley is, due to her clue involving a extinct species of woodpeckers, and thus ends the first half.

Hiassen’s ability to write out characters shines in the book which is not only from how they are painted, but how each is given positive and negative qualities without having them be forced. Skink is a person who goes to far protecting the enviorment. Richard is a nice, normal boy who dosn’t do anyhing to bad exceot for the “Saint Augisten’s incident” and that is justifiable from what life problems he was experiencing at the time. Even the bad characters are given some pity as there bad behavior is explaned as them “going off the road”.

Finally we have Hoassens ability to subvert reality yet make it seem plausible. Having a 14-year old drive a car? Sure, just as long as the older man is injured and a helpful police man gives him a fake licence. Need the book to be child-frendly? Don’t add too many details on what the kidnapper did. Overall, from his interesting plot, his colorful characters, and great situational writing, I have to say that this book is worth the read.

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One response to “Skink, No Surrender, first half

  1. christophersun1

    This Is Chris again to cover that other half of Skink, No Surrender. (This Intro was the worst thing I have ever typed). After finishing this book, I have to say I wanted more. The characters, as I stated earlier, were fledged out amazingly, from how Skink cannot use guns, to how he can easily smooth-talk and has enough charisma to get a canoe from a couple so that they could go find Malley after figuring out her clue regarding a obscure woodpecker species. This book also has serous allegories to how we are destroying the world, with refinances to Silent Spring, a book about DDT, and littering.

    Another amazing thing is the dialogue in this story. From a funny part about what rhymes with orange, to a the tense climax, this book is all laughs, tears, and emotions that hide the truly worrying predicament Malley is going through. And while this story is fairly short, only a few 281 pages compared to most book that reach around 300 pages, it is still worth the effort it takes to read it.

    Overall, I give this book a 8/10. While it was funny and entertains the reader, the main character was just a bit to bland when compared to the other characters, also while Hiaasen tries to stop it from happening, he still makes the main character into a Mary Sue, where his is basicly without fault, except for a couple small things that are either justified or to forcefully jammed in. Also, I felt that some the environments could be stylized more, because while some places are heavily detailed, others are a bit confusing, but are barely a problem. So, overall, I fell like Skink, No Surrender is a good read if you like laughs, suspense, or an eco-thriller that takes you on a ride of the Florida Everglades.

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