New York is where it is going to begin, I think. You can see it coming. The insect experts have learned how it works with locusts. Until locust population reaches a certain density, they all act like any grasshoppers. When the critical point is reached, they turn savage and swarm, and try to eat the world. We're nearing a critical point. One day soon two strangers will bump into each other at high noon in the middle of New York. But this time they won't snarl and go on. They will stop and stare and then leap at each others' throats in a dreadful silence. The infection will spread outward from that point. Old ladies will crack skulls with their deadly handbags. Cars will plunge down the crowded sidewalks. Drivers will be torn out of their cars and stomped. It will spread to all the huge cities of the world, and by dawn of the next day there will be a horrid silence of sprawled bodies and tumbled vehicles, gutted buildings and a few wisps of smoke.
Synopsis: Travis McGee does an old Korea buddy a favor and looks into the mysterious death of his sister's fiance. In the process he is nearly killed.
Okay, so for a while I was convinced I'd already read this book a long time ago and then when I was reading it this afternoon I realized that that simply couldn't be true, because I would have remembered having my pants scared off.
As an aside, holy tar does Travis have a chip on his shoulder about women who work outside the home. Hoo boy. 1964, you scare me. Anyway.
The book starts out with pretty standard stuff: McGee shows up and beards a modern woman in her lair, and takes a good ten minutes before getting her on her back and having at it. They laugh, they have good times, she finds out her fiance was not who he said he was and has a melancholy moment, McGee takes her mind off it with more sexytimes, and then--and then this book goes straight to crazytown. Kind of literally.
I have to say two things: a) I never saw that plot twist coming, and b) I didn't think he was getting out of that little scrape alive.
I was as surprised as Travis was that the hooker was able to get the jump on him so easily, for a start, and then when the lead villain was very calmly describing how they were planning that frontal lobotomy, I had chills. Total chills (Moral: always read with a shih tzu on your lap. They are warm.)
And I did not see how he was going to get out of it, because the passages describing Travis' experience being drugged out of his mind were so realistic, so ultra-realistic, and they were just him being the antithesis of everything he stands for, it was terrifying. Totally terrifying. As was the escape with the clawing and the chest and the stabbing and--*brrr*
Where's my shih tzu?