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Carl Hiaasen: Star Island

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Date and time
Monday, August 02, 2010

Journalist and best-selling author Carl Hiaasen reads from and explores his thriller, *Star Island*. Having worked as a reporter, investigative journalist, and columnist for newspapers in Florida (he still writes a column for The Miami Herald), Carl Hiaasen′s fiction has always combined the page-turning atmosphere of the thriller genre with hard-hitting commentaries on modern life. Meet twenty-two-year-old Cherry Pye (née Cheryl Bunterman), a pop star since she was fourteen, as she is about to attempt a comeback from her latest drug-and-alcohol disaster. Now meet Cherry again: in the person of her “undercover stunt double,” Ann DeLusia. Ann portrays Cherry whenever the singer is too “indisposed” to go out in public. And it is Ann-mistaken-for-Cherry who is kidnapped from a South Beach hotel by obsessed paparazzo Bang Abbott. Now the challenge for Cherry’s handlers (über–stage mother; horndog record producer; nipped, tucked, and Botoxed twin publicists; weed whacker–wielding bodyguard) is to rescue Ann while keeping her existence a secret from Cherry’s public—and from Cherry herself. The situation is more complicated than they know. Ann has had a bewitching encounter with Skink—the unhinged former governor of Florida living wild in a mangrove swamp—and now he’s heading for Miami to find her.

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Carl Hiaasen , a graduate of the University of Florida, at age 23 he joined *The Miami Herald* as a general assignment reporter and went on to work for the paper's weekly magazine and later its prize-winning investigations team. Since 1985 Hiaasen has been writing a regular column, which at one time or another has pissed off just about everybody in South Florida, including his own bosses. He has outlasted almost all of them, and his column still appears on most Sundays in *The Herald's* opinion-and-editorial section. For his journalism and commentary, Hiaasen has received numerous state and national honors, including the Damon Runyon Award from the Denver Press Club. His work has also appeared in many well-known magazines, including *Sports Illustrated*, *Playboy*, *Time*, *Life*, *Esquire* and, *Gourmet*.
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