First edition cover
|Publisher||William Morrow (USA) & HarperCollins (UK)|
|Media type||Print (Hardback & Paperback)|
|Pages||273 pp (first edition, hardback)|
|ISBN||0-688-16782-9 (first edition, hardback)|
|LC Class||PS3554.O719 F58 1999|
|Followed by||Hammerhead Ranch Motel|
Florida Roadkill is the first book in the unnamed series of books by Tim Dorsey which were centered on his character Serge Storms. It was published in 1999 by William Morrow and Company, an imprint of HarperCollins.
Note that although Triggerfish Twist was written several years later, the events of Twist take place at some unspecified point in the middle of those in Florida Roadkill (as Dorsey's web site puts it, Tim didn't know what he was doing and killed too many people he later decided he needed).
Roadkill is set in 1997, against the backdrop of that year's World Series in which the Florida Marlins won a stunning upset in Miami. Intelligent but sociopathic criminal Serge Storms meets up with heartless stripper Sharon Rhodes and brainless drug addict Seymore "Coleman" Bunsen, who become his travelling companions and partners in crime. Serge hatches a plan to steal an enormous fraudulent insurance settlement from an oversexed dentist, but the money proves surprisingly elusive. Storms and company pursue the metal briefcase containing the cash until the two companions meet untimely ends; Serge suffocates Sharon by spraying "Fix-A-Flat" into her lungs, and Coleman is later shot to death.
The book has two meandering subplots which eventually tie in with the main plot. The first involves a pair of longtime buddies who are participating in their annual unsuccessful fishing trip. They spend a great deal of time reminiscing, and their stories lend an odd thoughtfulness to Dorsey's trigger-happy writing style (a thoughtfulness which would later apparently be shelved until Orange Crush). Without their knowledge, the briefcase of money is hidden in the trunk of their car.
The second, slightly more comic, subplot deals with three bikeless bikers — Stinky, Ringworm and Cheese-Dick — who have been rejected from every biker group they have encountered and are on the down and out. They find an odd sort of niche as hired muscle in a retirement community, but are ultimately forced out by the community staff who want the seniors as miserable as possible. They spend the rest of the time yachting in a boat on loan from the retirement community's manager until they meet up with a deranged pervert who kills two of them (Cheese-Dick having died when accidentally shot with a flare gun).
A number of minor characters (such as Bradley Xeno, the boat captain, and McJagger, the retirement community operator) make minor appearances in the following book, Hammerhead Ranch Motel.