Murder is no laughing matter
Ex-professional baseball player Jake Longly adamantly refuses to work for his father, wanting no part of Ray’s PI world. He prefers to hang out at his beachfront bar and chase bikinis along the sugary beaches of Gulf Shores, Alabama. But Ray can be persuasive, so Jake finds himself staking out the home of wealthy Barbara Plummer, a suspected adulteress. The mission seems simple enough—hang around, take a few pictures, sip a little bourbon. Except Barbara gets herself murdered right under Jake’s nose.
When Jake launches into an investigation of his target’s homicide, he quickly runs afoul of Ukrainian mobster Victor Borkov. Aided by his new girlfriend Nicole Jamison and Tommy “Pancake” Jeffers, his behemoth employee with crazy computer skills, Jake tries to peel away the layers of the crime. The deeper the intrepid trio delves, the more murders start to pile up, leading them to Borkov’s massive yacht—where they just might be deep-sixed.
Perfect for fans of Carl Hiaasen and Janet Evanovich
While all of the novels in the Jake Longly Thriller Series stand on their own and can be read in any order, the publication sequence is:
Retired professional baseball player Jake Longly, the narrator of this entertaining if slight series launch set on Florida's Gulf Coast from Lyle (Stress Factor and two other Dub Walker novels), has agreed to do a little surveillance work for his PI father, Ray. Jake's first assignment is to take pictures of a cheating wife, but things get complicated when she's murdered and her lover turns out to be the new husband of Jake's ex-wife. When Jake, Ray, and Jake's beautiful new girlfriend, screenwriter Nicole Jamison, investigate, they realize that there's a connection to a local crime boss with some shady real estate plans. At times Lyle takes his Gulf Coast twist on Hiaasen and Dorsey too far (a pair of brothers named Darrell and Darnell is a joke that soon wears thin) and the ease with which Nicole falls into bed with Jake is a stretch, but the mix of quirky characters and some brutal acts of violence should offer plenty of grist for fans of the hard-boiled genre.