Nuclear Jellyfish (Serge Storms Series #11)

Nuclear Jellyfish (Serge Storms Series #11)

by Tim Dorsey

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Overview

“Dorsey’s brilliantly, profanely funny 11th novel…zips along like P.G. Wodehouse’s best work.”
 —Richmond Times-Dispatch

 

Tim Dorsey’s outrageously zany, gleefully violent, and uproariously funny Nuclear Jellyfish marks the triumphant return of lovable, thrill-killing Florida historian and tireless civic booster Serge A. Storms. The bestselling author of Atomic Lobster, Triggerfish Twist, and Florida Roadkill, Dorsey can match Carl Hiaasen punch-for-punch when it comes to fictionally depicting Sunshine State madness—and he’s taken his rightful place alongside Christopher Moore in the pantheon of top American humorists. Nuclear Jellyfish is a veritable WMD of radioactive hilarity—as Denver’s Rocky Mountain News so aptly puts it, “It doesn’t get any better.”

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061432675
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 12/29/2009
Series: Serge Storms Series , #11
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 307
Sales rank: 154,969
Product dimensions: 5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.72(d)

About the Author

Tim Dorsey was a reporter and editor for the Tampa Tribune from 1987 to 1999, and is the author of twenty-one novels: Pope of Palm Beach, Clownfish Blues, Coconut Cowboy, Shark Skin Suite, Tiger Shrimp Tango, The Riptide Ultra-Glide, When Elves Attack, Pineapple Grenade, Electric Barracuda, Gator A-Go-Go, Nuclear Jellyfish, Atomic Lobster, Hurricane Punch, The Big Bamboo, Torpedo Juice, Cadillac Beach, The Stingray Shuffle, Triggerfish Twist, Orange Crush, Hammerhead Ranch Motel, and Florida Roadkill. He lives in Tampa, FL.

Read an Excerpt


Nuclear Jellyfish

A Novel



By Tim Dorsey
HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.
Copyright © 2009

Tim Dorsey
All right reserved.



ISBN: 9780061432668


Chapter One

Jacksonville

Midnight.

Two young men walked along the bank of the St. Johns River, sporting shaved heads, sleeveless T-shirts and bituminous eyes that proudly announced: minimum wage 4 life. They gripped baseball bats halfway up the barrels.

"I hate fuckin' bums."

"So where are they?"

"Supposed to be a bunch of them right around here."

"Just like fuckin' bums."

There had been a light rain, and warm mist rose from the road. Work boots slapped across glistening tar and splashed through moonlit puddles. They approached the underpass of the Fuller Warren Bridge.

"Where the hell are those damn bums?"

"Hold up."

"What is it?"

"Over there."

"Where?"

"Shhhhh. Get your camcorder ready . . ."

A two-tone 1971 AMC Javelin with split upholstery sat in darkness and trash beneath a downtown bridge over the St. Johns River.

"Theories abound concerning the phenomenon of the nation's trash elite inexorably percolating down to Florida like industrial toxins reaching our aquifers . . ."

A beer can popped. "You're doing it again."

Serge wrote furiously in his notebook. "Doing what?"

"Talking to yourself."

"No I wasn't." Morewriting. ". . . This travel writer places his money on time-release scumbag DNA . . ."

Coleman burped. "You always talk to yourself and then say you're not."

"I am? Really? That's embarrassing." He leaned over his notebook. ". . . The scumbag genetic factor is like hereditary blood disease or male-pattern baldness. At progressive age milestones, a series of rusty, chain-link twists in the double helix trigger a sequence of social tumors: Buy a pit bull, buy an all-terrain vehicle, get a DUI, sponsor a series of blue-ribbon slapping matches with your wife in the middle of the street, discharge a gun indoors, fail to appear in court, discharge fireworks indoors, get a DUI, forget where you put your Oxycontin, crash your all-terrain vehicle into your pit bull, spend money to replace missing front teeth on large-mouth-bass mailbox, get stretchered away by ambulance for reasons you don't remember, appear on COPS for a DUI, run out the back door when warrants are served and, in a trademark spasm of late-stage dirtballism, move to Florida . . ."

Serge finished the transcription and turned to a fresh page. There was a period of silence in the two-tone Javelin (orange and green) sitting under the Fuller Warren Bridge. Then, a crunching of wax paper. A soggy tuna sandwich appeared. A travel mug of cold coffee came off the dashboard.

"Serge," said Coleman. "What did you mean before, 'We're on stakeout'? We're not police."

"Common mistake everyone makes, like the Constitution's reserve clause for states' rights. Just because cops do it, doesn't mean we can't." Serge took a sip from the mug. "This is our new job."

Coleman finished unwrapping the sandwich. "I thought our new job was visiting hotels to fill out checklists for that travel website."

"And on every hotel listing, there's a section called 'local things to do.' "

"I'm not sure the websites want to send their customers under bridges at night in dicey parts of town."

"That's my offbeat niche: I give the ¬people what they want before they know they want it."

"But your new boss specifically said no more offbeat reports."

"Everyone does what their bosses ask, and that's precisely why you need to distinguish yourself from the herd." Serge killed the coffee. "I stun them into paralyzed respect with my withering insubordination. First impressions are important."

"They usually call security."

"Because I made an impression."

Coleman checked one of his pants pockets, then another. He pulled out his hand and raised the twisted corner of a Baggie to his eyes. "Where'd it all go? Did mice chew through here? Oh well . . ." He bent over.

"Thought you'd outgrown that."

"What do you mean?"

"Everyone now knows coke is fucked up. You had an excuse for a while, because our hypocritical government lost all credibility by lumping pot in with crack to court the weed-bigot vote. Meanwhile, congressmen crammed all orifices with huge wads of cash from tobacco and liquor lobbies. But who would have guessed they were actually right about that stupid white shit?"

Coleman raised his head and sniffled. "I just do a little bump now and then so I can stay up and keep drinking beer."

"For a second I thought you weren't being productive."

Coleman's head suddenly snapped to the side. He pointed out Serge's window. "What was that?"

Serge turned. "What?"

"Something moved under the bridge."

Serge returned to his notebook. "Nothing's there. You're hallucinating again."

Coleman squinted a few more seconds, then shrugged. He stuck his tongue inside the empty bag and reached under the seat for another Schlitz. "We need to make some money."

"That's what I'm doing now." Serge flipped a notebook page, stopped and tapped his chin with a pen. "I need travel-writing tunes." He reached for his iPod, synched it with an RF transmitter to the Javelin's radio and cranked the volume.

" . . . Fly high, oh, Freebird, yeah! . . ."

Coleman rewrapped his tuna sandwich. "You've been listening to Skynyrd all day."

"We're in Jacksonville. I'm required to listen to Skynyrd."

"Why? Skynyrd's from Alabama."

Serge began punching the steering wheel like a speed bag. "Everyone thinks they're from Alabama! They're Floridians! Apocryphal motherfuckers . . ."

"Okay, okay, they're from Florida." Coleman set a wax ball on the dashboard. "I don't know this stuff like you."

Serge pointed at the ball. "You're messing up my horizon."

"The sandwich is soggy."

"Soggy's better."

"Fuck that shit."

"Your little chestnuts complete my life."

"So Skynyrd's really from Florida?"

"Too many of our state's native accomplishments are credited elsewhere. First Skynyrd and Alabama, then everyone thinks the Allman Brothers are from Georgia."

"They're not?"

"South Daytona Beach." Serge flipped down the sun visor and gazed up at a photo attached with rubber bands.

"You sure keep looking at that picture a lot."

"I think I'm in love for the first time in my life."



Continues...


Excerpted from Nuclear Jellyfish by Tim Dorsey Copyright © 2009 by Tim Dorsey. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Customer Reviews

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Nuclear Jellyfish 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 45 reviews.
Druid111 More than 1 year ago
Every book better than the last. From Jacksonville to the Keys there is never a dull moment. Serge and Coleman are clear in your imagination. You feel as if you are there.
dmglaeser More than 1 year ago
A fun book to take to the park or the baach
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
For those of you who have had a chance to read Tim Dorsey's work in the past this latest installment of florida history and murder won't disapoint. For those of you who haven't had a chance to read this authors work let me give you a little taste of what you will experience. Surge and Coleman are this wacky duo that stand up for people who can't stand up for themselves and along the road this time I-95 they run into several of the landmarks that are true Floridania. They start in Jacksonville and head south through the state of florida tracking a diamond smuggling operation that revolves around coin fairs. I know it sounds crazy but you have to read it to believe it. You will laugh outloud and wonder how anyone could come up with such a dramatic plot with crazy characters.
Dr_Arrival More than 1 year ago
Serge Storms, one of the most unique fictional characters of our time. This book, once again, brings you through a whirlwind of historical Florida trivia, along with funny, wacky characters that make (Evanovich's) Stephanie Plum and her Grandma look like cartoon characters. If you love Florida or love to laugh, read this book!!!
harstan More than 1 year ago
In Jacksonville Serge A. Storms becomes unglued, which seems strange as he is always unglued, when he sees a couple of skinheads dispatching a pair of skinheads beating up a homeless person. Feeling a need to right this wrong, he takes care of both punks, Serge style.

However, Serge needs some spending money so he and Coleman head to an Internet job fair as he has become quite good on-line especially with his rants. He obtains two jobs: check streets for a GPS system and evaluate motels for a travel club. His new work introduces him and his traveling buddy to a con dealing gang who make more money illegally bringing in diamonds, but as always he rights the wrongs of cheating discount motel owners, thugs preying on the hopeless and having sex with a Viewmaster-loving stripper. In other words Serge takes out miscreants who scorn society.

This is the usual insanity as Serge takes readers on a bloody unique tour of Florida. Fans of the series will enjoy his latest escapades as he doles out punishment with gizmos like a hose to reprobates used to bullying their way without regard. Though more of a road trip series of escapades without an overarching plot, readers will enjoy riding the highways and byways as Serge provides his usual enthusiastic bloody tour.

Harriet Klausner
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another of the best
reverends on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I laughed out loud.That's right, you heard me. I laughed out loud. That doesn't happen often to me when reading a book. So when it does, I take notice.And I didn't just laugh once. Not by a long shot. I laughed often, chuckled repeatedly, and smiled almost the entire way through.I have a new favorite author, and his name is Tim Dorsey.Tim Dorsey has managed to create the ultimate anti-hero in Serge A. Storms, the psychotic/obsessive/compulsive/homicidal/vengeful/chaotic force of nature that travels the lovely state of Florida with his completely useless and helpless junkie alcoholic sidekick, Coleman.When we first meet Serge and Coleman in the book, they are staking out a bridge, discussing Lynyrd Skynyrd, and wearing diapers in reverence of a lunatic astronaut.This alone should make you want to start reading.Serge has decided to launch his own Travel Guide Blog to Florida, featuring handy survival tips for the Floridian Tourist, such as how to tell where the criminals are sleeping by the way the cars are parked, and how to avoid Barracuda Hookers. This quest has him criss-crossing the Sunshine state in search of the iconic landmarks littering its landscape, many of them involving Lynyrd Skynyrd.Along the way, Serge and his Incompetent Compatriot pick up a hitchhiking exotic dancer on a mission of vengeance and tuition, stumble upon a band of diamond smuggling coin collectors, and go head to head with a blood-thirsty sociopath with a horribly botched glow-in-the-dark tattoo, all the while being chased down by a suspended detective perpetual stuck in a crime fiction noir novel, and a mysterious stranger who seems to know Serge's every move better then he knows himself.Still not interested?Despite all of this, Serge manages to periodically take time out to exact twisted justice on perceived predators of the everyday civilian in a myriad of inventively gruesome ways. Combining his love of Home Depot with his distaste for con-men, hustlers, predators and all-around villains, Serge exacts a MacGyver-like ingenuity with a diabolical mean streak that guarantees a high death-toll, and amusing assortment of severed limbs, and over a million hits on YouTube.What more could you want?Tim Dorsey manages to combine the madcap with the morose, and creates a Punisher meets The Three Stooges romp through Florida that is exciting, unpredictable, and laugh-out-loud hilarious.Trust me, just read the book already. You'll thank me.
prairillon on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I've read everything Tim Dorsey has published and plan to continue to do so. His riffs critiquing everything about modern culture while reminding us of what we have lost or are losing are as sharply on-target as anything producer David E. Kelley has given us, and that's saying a lot. In this outing, Serge is writing a tourism blog, although the major travel websites decline to pick up his commentary or his bills, largely because he focuses on elements such as "how not to become a murder victim" and "how not to get rolled by a hooker." Coleman is along for the ride -- more or less, if you know what I mean. Mahoney, the noir-speaking detective remains on Serge's tail throughout his madcap criss-crossing of the state of Florida. Serge also continues his serial murder habit, killing miscreants with various spare parts found at his local Home Depot and a lot of ingenuity. Serge is also into self-examination in this book, which I found to slow the story quite a bit. I like a Serge who knows just where he's headed, even if he has no idea where he's going. Coleman was also unusually perceptive while at the same time being dangerously unreliable... he's always been unreliable but I don't think Serge ever had to rely on him before. I don't expect a Serge Storms book to make sense, but I do need it to be coherent and I didn't find that in this one. Will be anxiously awaiting the next!
Cats57 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Nuclear Jellyfish: A Novel - by Tim DorseyAlthough books by Mr. Dorsey have come highly recommended, and friends of mine have actually threatened me to get me to try them, I¿ve been reluctant. I¿ve been a firm lover of comedic Floridian author Carl Hiaasen all my life and never felt the need to try any others books about Florida. But now all I can say is that after reading ¿Nuclear Jellyfish¿ and picking myself up off the floor from laughing so hard, I had to come and give my humble opinion. Fantastic! This was like revisiting the best of my parent¿s and my grandparent¿s vacations [Pre-Disney Florida] without every having to take out the photo albums or the film projector. Fast paced, fast talking, fast living serial killer [but only killing people that really, really need to be killed] Serge and his always stoned side-kick Coleman, take you on a never ending car trip around a Florida only a few remember and most of us tourists will never [hopefully] get to see. While we follow Serge and Coleman across the state, we also meet a gang of hotel robbers, led by Eel or should I say `Jellyfish¿; the clearly demented ring leader of the gang preying on coin show salesmen who are in actuality diamond couriers who have all been set up to be robbed. Eventually their paths cross and the plot thickens. And I don¿t want to give away more of the story than necessary.Interesting secondary character Storm - who may not be what she seems, (it gets a little confusing for a while) and long running Agent Mahoney, the ¿noir¿ talking Detective who is determined to nab Serge are a delight.I thoroughly enjoyed this and I will be adding more of these books by Tim Dorsey to my wish list.
rowenawrites on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
What's not to love about Serge? A serial killer with a catalogue of psychological disorders - and a good heart - who finds novel, new and interesting ways to kill bad people. Who could resist this modern-day Superman with a killer wit? Serge and sidekick Coleman take to the road again dispensing their unique form of truth, justice and the American way. You don't need to know the story. If you haven't read Dorsey you're missing the best comedic crime fiction there is. Who else writes stuff like "White pride is rotating the tyres on your house."
Hagelstein on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The formula is standard by now. Serge and Coleman barrel around Florida on a loosely themed tour in a vintage car. This time it's a Javelin. Serge kills deserving people using creative and varied methods. Coleman stays wasted. Predatory diamond thieves are the current targets. The interaction between Serge and Coleman is even funnier than usual in this story. The "Rock Vault" is a particularly amusing bit. Florida history "nut" Serge shares his offbeat tourist tidbits with a couple of new characters, and even his nemesis Mahoney. The strange Florida news continues to supply Tim Dorsey with plenty of material for our amusement.
lpg3d on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Even though it started a bit slow, I really enjoyed this book in the Serge Storms series. Once again, Dorsey comes up with very creative ways for Serge to kill the bad people and to take revenge for the innocent.
andsoitgoes on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Always enjoy crazy Serge but this one was hard to follow. Enjoyed it as a Playaway - the voices were very well done.
Drewano More than 1 year ago
Another fun Serge adventure. This book has it all, a serial killer, humor, tale of vengeance, and more Florida pop culture than Coleman could smoke, snort or drink in a week! This time Serge and Coleman are trying to make a living as travel reviewers showing what Florida travel is really like. The heck with South Beach and Duval Street, you’ll see historic bars and hotels and learn stuff that you really had no desire to know in the first place and won’t help you in any way whatsoever. However, along the way you’ll have tons of fun on this hilariously wild ride.
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