There is something unusual about Carl Hiaasen's fourth outing for kids. I'm not sure whether it's the bizarre plot or the unorthodox setting but something definitely makes the book stick out.
I'm not afraid to say that I'm a fan of Hiaasen's work but I was put off the whole book by the first page. Our lead character is called Wahoo. Shortly after saying our lead's name, the book says, "yes like the fish." Am I the only person that didn't know "Wahoo" was a type of fish?
The book is enjoyable, cheesy and American, but enjoyable.
It follows the unlikely adventures of a professional animal wrangler Mickey Cray(?!) and his son, Wahoo. They're hired by a major television show called Expedition Survival! (it's like Born Survivor: Bear Grylls) with the show's main explorer, Derek Badger (yes it is a stage name, Derek Badger's real name
is Lee Bluepenny and it does get weirder.)
Wahoo and Mickey take the job and head to the Everglades, a remote jungle part of Florida. Along the way they meet Tuna, a classmate of Wahoo(!) who's being physically abused by her father. She tags along with the group on the journey to the Everglades. If Tuna and Wahoo are weird enough names, some others include Raven, Link, Sickler and Brick.
The book feels as if Carl Hiaasen has got really excited and written the whole thing in one night. It's a bit patronising but gets away with it. It's enjoyable and readable.
A weird book but I'm guessing Carl Hiaasen must be a weird person. No offence, Carl.