It was the first game of the season at Florida Field, and in typical fashion the Gators had scheduled something less than a fearsome opponent. This year it was the University of Tulsa. Midway through the second quarter the score was already twenty-seven us, zip for the Golden Hurricanes.
Reality would come home to roost in two weeks when we faced off against Tennessee, but for now the future appeared glorious, and the only thing in life that even mildly concerned me was why a football team from Oklahoma would call itself the Golden Hurricanes.
I turned to Barbara Pickering and said: “Don’t you think they ought to call themselves something more geographically appropriate? Like the Golden Cow Patties?”
It got laughs from the people sitting around us.
“Or the Golden Tumbleweeds,” said a woman to my left.
Barbara looked up from her book.
“I’m sorry,” she said. “Did you say something?”
It was Barbara’s first time at Florida Field. In fact, it was her first time at a football game. I was trying hard not to be offended by the fact she had not only brought along a book—A House for Mr. Biswas, by V. S. Naipaul—she was actually reading it. I had never seen anyone reading a book at a football game.
A man sitting in front of us turned to Barbara.
“Honey,” he said. “Please tell me that’s a book about football.”
“Well, actually, it’s about the Hindu community in Trinidad and how this poor downtrodden man, Mr. Biswas, so badly wants a house of his very own, yet—”
I gave Barbara a nudge. She stopped.
“You’ll have to forgive her,” I told the man in front of us. “Barbara’s British.”
Barbara gave the guy a smile so stunning that his ears turned red. I could relate. I do the same thing whenever she smiles at me.
I reached under my seat and found the pint flask of Mount Gay that I had smuggled into the stadium. I poured a healthy dollop into my cup. Then I pulled a wedge of lime from the plastic baggie in my pants pocket and squeezed it into the rum.
The man in front of us turned around again. Mainly because I had succeeded in squirting the back of his neck with lime juice.
“You’ll have to forgive him,” Barbara told the man. “Zack has scurvy.”
Moments later, the Gators scored. I stood to cheer with the rest of the crowd. Barbara took the opportunity to stretch and yawn and work out the kinks. She glanced at the scoreboard.
“Oh my, only two minutes left,” she said. “Perhaps we should go now and beat the crowd.”
“That’s just until halftime.”
“Meaning . . .”
“Meaning, with TV time-outs and the Gators’ passing game, I’d say we can look forward to at least another two hours of this. Good thing the relative humidity is 187 percent. That way it will seem like a whole lot
“I was wondering when Bob Morris would finally get around to writing a novel, and it was worth the wait. Bahamarama is sly, smart, cheerfully twisted, and very funny. Morris is a natural.”
---Carl Hiaasen, New York Times bestselling author of Skin Tight
”Bob Morris, a terrific writer and pure Florida boy, has created a marvelous tale that perfectly captures the nation's strangest state. Like Florida itself, Bahamarama is wild, weird, unpredictable, populated by exotic denizens--and funny as hell.”
---Dave Barry, New York Times bestselling author and Pulitzer Prize winner
”Hard-boiled, edgy debut novel . . . An array of colorful locals gives the story some much-needed texture, while juicy plotting keeps this impressive page-turner simmering. Morris has produced an accomplished first novel with a priceless final scene.”
”Morris has ably woven kidnapping plots, subplots, a promiscuous heiress, a Taino medicine man, and even a hurricane together to keep the pages turning.”
---Caribbean Travel & Life
”A breezy, energetic debut . . . should be the start of a long series. Morris’s wry sense of humor, coupled with a bit of cynicism, crisp dialogue, and seasoned view of Florida and the Bahamas, give an extra punch to Bahamarama.”
---South Florida Sun-Sentinel
”The plot swerves with each swell caused by an incoming hurricane. Abundant Caribbean descriptions, amazing characters, unremitting wry humor, and a strong protagonist flavor this tempting first novel. Carl Hiaasen, Tim Dorsey, and Randy Wayne White fans will be reserving this one.”