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Skin Tight | [Carl Hiaasen]

Skin Tight

This novel by Carl Hiaasen, author of Tourist Season and Native Tongue, begins as most thrillers do, with a killing. But this is no everyday, hum-drum, garden variety killing. Our hero, Nick Stranahan, a 42-year-old private investigator who has killed five men and been married five times, skewers his attacker's aorta with the razor-sharp bill of a stuffed marlin.
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Publisher's Summary

This novel by Carl Hiaasen, author of Tourist Season and Native Tongue, begins as most thrillers do, with a killing. But this is no everyday, hum-drum, garden variety killing. Our hero, Nick Stranahan, a 42-year-old private investigator who has killed five men and been married five times, skewers his attacker's aorta with the razor-sharp bill of a stuffed marlin, setting off a roller coaster ride of events that will drop-kick Stranahan into the deep slime of Miami's prosperous plastic surgery industry.

As with Hiaasen's other books, Skin Tight is one long, extended farce, a comic take on everything from TV tabloid hosts to ambulance chasers, chronicling modern America's ever-growing penchant for tastelessness, self-absorption, and high sleaze.

You will find yourself laughing in spite of yourself at wildly improbable characters like Chemo, a 7-foot monster with a face like a bowl of breakfast cereal; Heather Chappell, who wants to completely renovate her Barbi-doll body; and Reynaldo Flemm, the host of prime time's In Your Face, who stages mock attacks to his person in order to increase the Nielsen ratings.

©1989 Carl Hiaasen; (P)1993 Recorded Books, LLC

What the Critics Say

"Hiaasen's latest thriller is his funniest and sharpest novel to date....This wickedly amusing story is the work of a keen satirist who off-handedly exposes the moral rot at every level of society." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (1084 )
5 star
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4.0 (410 )
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4.2 (408 )
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Chris Wilmington, NC, USA 08-02-04
    Chris Wilmington, NC, USA 08-02-04 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    55
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    "Skintight"

    In typical Hiaasen fashion this book lives up to his wicked sense of humor. The way he writes his stories make you feel as though you're in the story & can't wait for the next hilarious character to surface.
    Anyone who has listened to Hiaasen will certainly love this one. Its also a great introduction to new listeners.
    A must hear.

    29 of 30 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tim Woolwich Township, NJ, USA 10-06-04
    Tim Woolwich Township, NJ, USA 10-06-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
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    6
    6
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    "Very Funny & Enjoyable!"

    This was a great book with great characters. Carl seemed to have included every type of character immaginable in this book and tie them all together. One of the best books I've listened to on Audible. If you like the character Nick Stranahan, check out Skinny Dip also.

    11 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Riggs Sebring Florida 09-08-04
    John Riggs Sebring Florida 09-08-04 Listener Since 2002

    Fat Johnny

    HELPFUL VOTES
    40
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    "Skin Tight"

    Typical Hiaason, difficult to put down. I can't wait for "Sick Puppy" to arrive in audible.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cindy LAGUNA BEACH, CA, United States 05-23-05
    Cindy LAGUNA BEACH, CA, United States 05-23-05 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not my favorite, but still a fun read."

    This one was not my favorite of the three Carl Hiaasen books I've read. It got a little tedious at times - but was still entertaining and fun.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deanna Lake Dallas, TX 05-24-12
    Deanna Lake Dallas, TX 05-24-12 Member Since 2009

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Lighthearted But Serious Subject"

    I enjoyed this book. I was looking for something light after I had read a series of serious books, however due to the subject matter it probably wasn't the best choice for a relaxing read. While it is humorous, a lot of people are killed in this book.

    I listened to Skinny Dip prior to this, so it was interesting to see where Mick Stranahan came from. I think some of the conclusions are a bit far fetched, but really it was enjoyable if you don't read into it too much.

    Just a heads up. While I listen in the car I have to keep my audio player at top volume so I don't have to keep my car speakers so loud because I get static, this usually is not an issue - but for some reason this book had a weird buzzing noise in the background every time the narrator was "on". If the narrator stopped and it was just space interjected during editing it didn't buzz. I could drown out the buzzing without too much trouble, but it was obvious when he went on and off. I thought the narration was fine (a few minor blips, but nothing unexpected) but I knocked it a star because of the editing/buzzing. It also seemed like it stopped and started a new chapter/paragraph without proper spacing in some areas. Spacing I'd expect at the end of a sentence and it took me a minute to catch up that we were talking about different people.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Timothy 02-12-05
    Timothy 02-12-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fantastic!!!!!!"

    ANYTHING by Hiassen is GREAT. Funny? - NO - Hilariously Funny! And well written. George Wilson's reading is flawless and his characterizations add even more humor. I have listened not only to this book but three others and they are by far my favorites. These audios are actually better than reading the books (I have read two of them as well). One warning - members of the female gender may not like these books (as I have noticed by some of the reviews), but do not let that deter you. His books are truly worth getting -- I will even listen to this one again.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charles Atkinson Greensboro, NC, United States 10-22-14
    Charles Atkinson Greensboro, NC, United States 10-22-14 Member Since 2005

    A few must reads: Mr. Mercedes, Narrows Gate, Cop Town, Bomb Proof, Wayfaring Stranger, The Son (Nesbo), Dept Q series...

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Another Fun Romp Into the Absurd"

    This is another fun novel featuring former cop Mick Stranahan, a man who has killed as many men as he has former wives. That would be 5 , at least in this novel. Mick is gifted with an overwhelming amount of common sense along with an uncommonly accurate ability to size people up quickly.

    As is the case with many gifted heroes in literature , he has an equally extreme weakness that keeps his ego in check. He has the lowest possible immunity from falling in love with whoever he sleeps with. Thus he has had 5 ex wives, all cocktail or diner waitresses.

    Another common trait of Hiasson novels the absurd lives of his villains. In this case the story begins with a former nurse scheming to extort money from her former employer, an unethical quack plastic surgeon, by threatening to expose his killing of a young college girl several years back. To validate her claim while diverting attention away from her actual scam, she plays on the vanity of an egocentric investigative reporter and points all involved parties to a former detective who worked the case years ago. One Mick Stranahan.

    Suddenly we are in the world of plastic surgery as viewed by a wonderfully talented, cynical humorist, an ex reporter, turned columnist turned novelist. Let's face it, it is a world of extreme vanity, sexually charged, enormous egos, even larger insecurities...and little oversight by the medical community. There is no shortage of material here for Hiasson to work with.

    I love the characters, the humor, the relationships and most of all I enjoyed the whole experience.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth Hayward, CA, United States 10-07-11
    Elizabeth Hayward, CA, United States 10-07-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I think I missed something"

    All the reviews of this said how funny it was. Perhaps I should not have tried it right after reading Open and Shut. There were some things that I thought might have been amusing, but only after I stopped and thought about it. Maybe the performance was too subtle for me. I usually "get it" when it's subtle, but there was some brutality in this that just wasn't funny. I will give it another try, perhaps after a text book or something with no expectation. The narrator sounded fine, but what was funny got right passed me.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shannon boothwyn, PA, USA 03-13-06
    Shannon boothwyn, PA, USA 03-13-06
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    "Not his best"

    I've only listened to two of his books, but I can't say that I was a huge fan of this one. The plot was good enough, but some of the scenes were painful to listen to – like any involving ditzy women that threw herself at any of the male characters. I like the outrageous scenarios, but the voice of the narrator was grating whenever he had to do a female character – they all sounded the same; airy and unintelligent. Try Skinny Dip instead.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joseph Overland Park, KS, USA 01-03-05
    Joseph Overland Park, KS, USA 01-03-05 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    10
    8
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    "Not for everybody"

    This book is not for everyone, only those that appreciate a dark sense of humor, a good story with more twists and turns than a sports car road race, vivid and right on point criticism of what has happened to South Florida and a book that is hard to put down. Warning: if you listen to it in public, you may find yourself laughing out loud before you know it.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
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