Razor Girl was my first introduction to Carl Hiassen. The bright yellow cover with a pinup girl riding a straight edge razor definitely caught my eye when I was browsing the shelves for a new read. I checked a review from NPR and bought it.
We all have our ideas of what Hiassen calls “Weird Florida Stuff.” I’ve been fascinated for a long time about things like “Florida Man” or all the weird news you hear about from Florida, which our author has curated into an amazing satirical novel that’s not too far fetched.
While there is a lot to dig into between the toxic masculinity, swampland, mobs, giant rats, and the celebrity status of hick reality stars, one of the most captivating parts of this book was the women and the power they had over the men.
The exposition shows Merry Mansfield putting men in an uncomfortable position as she wrecks her car into Lane Coolman while shaving her bikini line. While she acts nonchalant, he can’t seem to keep his cool. And of course this is all part of grander scheme to con some money on Merry’s part. When she rejects Lane’s sexual advances, he loses his mind realizing he truly has no power whether it’s over Merry or his marriage or his skeezy career.
We’re later introduced to Lane’s reality star client, Buck, who is a knock-off Duck Dynasty-esque type of character. He’s a redneck who is cheating on his wife, who essentially blackmails him into keeping it together for the cameras so she can keep her share of reality TV money. His family on the show are equally idiots, but Buck ends up running away during a promotional act, which ends up being a missing persons case.
This case is taken on off the record by Andrew Yancy, a disgraced Florida detective who know works as a health inspector. Yancy has a history of not really being a great partner in his relationships. He’s so focused on the woman who left him and he’s rarely emotionally available to his now girlfriend who honestly seems way too good to be with him in the first place. Yancy also has a big dispute with the high-power lawyer who is buying a plot of land next to him, but more specifically with his wife, Deb. Deb spends a lot of time trying to tell contractors exactly what she wants, and ends up losing her pricey engagement ring, which Yancy finds and refuses to return. He wants to have power over this woman and this is how he sees is the best way to do it.
In a celebration of Florida trash, I figured I would pair this book with Florida’s state drink, the Rum Runner.
– 1 oz light rum
– 1 oz dark rum
– 1 oz banana liqueur
– 1 oz blackberry liqueur
– 1 oz orange juice
– 1 oz pineapple juice
– splash of grenadine
Pour ingredients into a cocktail shaker full of ice, shake well, and strain into a hurricane glass over fresh ice. Or you can pour it into whatever glass you want. I don’t care. Throw in an umbrella and crazy straw and avoid bath salts.