LOOT by Gary Alexander


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Stand-up comic Buster Hightower, his beloved Carla and a gaggle of slapstick-driven neurotics chase after MacGuffins.

When Judith Roswell needs cash to placate the bill collectors, she brings a snazzy “family heirloom” to pawnbroker Randall Coll. Disappointed with the meager sum he offers, she snatches it back, returns home, packs up the treasures secreted in her basement and donates them to the charity Services for the Needy. The pawnbroker, however, has his wacky nephew Mad Dog follow her, a task he botches so badly that she hires a private eye to find out who’s stalking her. The shamus, black sheep Tyler Polk "Tip" Taylor III, estranged from his philandering dad and alcoholic mumsy, has recently received a diploma from the Gumshoe Online Institute of Private Detection. Judith hires Tip over the phone while she’s arranging for Carla and her Last Chance Agency to provide car insurance for his Aston Martin. The trio realize that Judith is fudging facts about her family treasures, which have now attracted the attention of reality TV developer Vance Popkirk and decrepit former Roswell housemaid Harriet, who thinks she’s entitled to some of the loot as payment for Judith’s father’s pawing her. Soon, Randall is spying on Mad Dog, who’s busy trying to strangle Harriet, shoot Judith’s brother and dragoon Popkirk into a partnership. Meanwhile, Tip tries to get into Judith’s pants, Harriet lunges for Tip’s zipper, and mumsy hires a lawyer to clean out the elder Tip in divorce proceedings. Carla, a matchmaker to the core of her middle-aged bones, tries to get the Taylors together again while Buster ends his nightly gig at the Westside Bowling Alley and Casino with stale but funny lawyer jokes. A little nookie and a lot of car chases and clandestine house entries complete the plot, which draws its inspiration from the 1954 robbery of the Pioneer Safe Deposit Vaults.

As usual, Buster (Interlock, 2012, etc.) provides a playful workout for your sense of humor, unless, of course, you’re a lawyer.

Pub Date: Sept. 18th, 2013
ISBN: 978-1-4328-2717-5
Page count: 264pp
Publisher: Five Star
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2013


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