Book Jacket

 

rank 742
word count 82598
date submitted 11.01.2009
date updated 26.02.2014
genres: Fiction, Thriller, Crime
classification: moderate
complete

CondoMAXimum

Raymond Terry

Gambling is coming to Paradise Beach Florida. Real estate mogul Derek Clymer is building a new city for the purpose.

 

Soon it becomes apparent that Derek has picked the wrong team for the job.

Jake Terrebonne is skimming. Billy Hunt is too honest. An investigative reporter is smelling around and Bert Weems, local fixer, has a problem. Of course it is nothing that money cannot solve and as this book opens we find Bert abortively engaged at making his problem worse. It all could have been so easy.

While his future spirals towards the drain Bert compounds his mistake until the problem becomes simply a man named Bertram Weems. Not to worry though, Jimmy 'Blue' Terrebonne has been making problems permanently disappear for years.

Available on Kindle. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005HA9YW8?ie=UTF8&tag=thwoisfloratl-20&linkCode=xm2&camp=1789&creativeASIN=B005HA9YW8 and Amazon or createspace in paperbound.



Cover artwork is by Brett Glennon. www.roopopdesign.com

 
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tags

casino skimming, gambling, murder

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65 comments

 

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Famlavan wrote 1561 days ago

CondoMaximum

Gosh this is an immense storyline
Very astutely constructed plot, with, for me brilliant characterisation. Great narrative, great dialogue, great book. Very professional!

carlashmore wrote 1570 days ago

Damn , you can write. There was an asured intelligence to this without ever coming across as pretentious. Your prose is rich, lyrical yet always gripping for an adult audience. I thought it was fantastic. Well done. Carl. The time Hunters

David Fearnhead wrote 1615 days ago

This read like i'd just picked it up from the crime shelf in the bookstore.
No nitpicks.
From the very first word you pull the reader into the story and hold us there with excellent descriptions.
Punchy dialogue, It's spent a good few days on my shelf because of it.
David
Bailey of the Saints.

jfredlee wrote 1572 days ago

Raymond -

Whoa, and I thought Carl Hiaasen had a lock on all the loonies and scumbags in south Florida.

Damn, this is good writing. Could be the literary love child of union between Hiaasen and either John D. MacDonald or Elmore Leonard. And that's some damn good company.

Gonna back this, then knock back a few Coronas and a bowl of conch chowder.

Best of luck here, and I'd love to get your take on my book.

Thanks for sharing with us.

- Jeff Lee
THE LADIES TEMPERANCE CLUB'S FAREWELL TOUR

LCF Quartet wrote 557 days ago

Hi Raymond,
I read all your pitches and it's really hard to choose one book to read. I felt like I was strolling in a bookstore, reading the back covers of some interesting, down-to-earth, and no 'nonsense' books. Thanks for the feeling...I'm also a fan of Omar Khayam, by the way. I read all his poems and I have a collection of them in my library at home.

Due to time limitations, a mutual problem we all have here, I only read the first five chapters of CondoMAXium, and I loved what I read so far. The pace, your writing style in general, the characters and the premise simply rock!

6 stars and watch-listed for further feedback as I read on,
Best wishes,
Lucette- Ten Deep Footprints

Hyperion wrote 707 days ago

My Club Agatha read, chapters 1&2, for Condo Maximum by Raymond Terry.
Looking at my notes, there are several key words that jump out from the page, but not many, for soon I was so caught up in the story I forgot to add to them.
Whilst this is written in the third person, you have managed to grab your reader with the your sharp clear writing style and insightful descriptions.
This is a very American novel set in the present time as you show us 'the sleazy side of the gambling industry. Is there any other,?'
As a English reader, I had to concentrate hard of your paragraphs to understand some of the terminology and found your long descriptions a little disconcerting at times. Your description of someone sweating was wonderfully evocative.
I guess we are not meant to like any of these slime-balls except that at the end of Chapter two. We learn that the police are on the case.

After the long introduction in chapter two I found it a little hard to understand how the story would erupt into utter amomosity animosity between your protagonists, when they both had so much to lose? but the dialogue felt true and utterly riverting as these vile people do their business.

In truth, I did not like the subject matter or the people and wonder if I would wish to read on. However, that is just me.

I quickly abandoned my usual GMC criteria for readability as it is obvious from the start that you are a wordsmith Mr. Terry, if a little verbose at times.

The Goals of your protagonists are clearly defined and laid out, as is their motivation, their endless chase riches and are willing to do anything, to get it.

The Conflicts are yet to be fully established yet but one rather assumes that corruption and greed will play a big part.

All the best with this, sorry I cannot offer any constructive advice except cut it down some, and let your of character and dialogue shine through. Ray Jones(MIB)

Lena M. Pate wrote 711 days ago

Club Agatha Critique 2
Another winner Raymond. Excellent writing style, fabulous build of intrigue, solid characters and fast moving pace that keeps the audience riveted. This too will do very well.

Lena

Inqusitive Agie wrote 712 days ago

Agatha club round two ch 1

I admire your ability to write descriptions the way you do. It's enough, not to little not too much. You have small islands of dialogue accompannied with narrative that helps the story move along. You've written four other books this means you have some experience and practice makes perfect.

Cupcake xx wrote 722 days ago

Hi!
Club Agatha Critique

So I must say from the start of this critique that I think your book is very professional. Very well written.
Now, personally, I find third person narrative hard to read, but I must say, you even had me hooked with this and I loved the way you went in deep with your narrative and you made it seem like the characters were real even in third person.
The distinction you made between the narrative and the speech was very well done.

Overall; a very, very good so far and I will be back soon to read more.
Alex

Joanie Dee wrote 947 days ago

I'm glad too see that people are discovering this wonderful writer. RT's stories never disappoint anyone with interest enough to read complete works. JD

Brian Bandell wrote 974 days ago

Cool story. It touches on the corruption in Florida politics and development and, of course, the gambling issue that has surfaced once again. Those themes, in addition to your professional level of writing, is reason enough to publish this.

There’s a comma missing in this sentence: “Monday, which was the day when wings were traditionally reported to the New Jersey casino Control Commission(,) was coming of course, but today, was just another Saturday.”

Typo: “I’m sorry sir BUT I just can’t seem to handle him anymore…”

When you say “but I’m digressing” who is “I?” Is there a narrative character?

One thing would be nice to add is a sympathetic group that would lose if the casinos are built. Maybe a nice land owner who would be displaced or a local business that would be crushed by the competition.

This is great work. I'll back it.

Brian Bandell
Mute

EMDelaney wrote 1036 days ago

CondoMAXimum / Raymond Terry

Each time I read something that has been written by this author I find myself sitting, staring at the computer in amazement. For several reasons actually. One, he is truly a talented, prolific writer with an uncanty ability to scribble, and two because of his unique command of language that still delivers in a way that makes me feel he has utilized each and every adverb, pronoun and descriptive perfectly. Yet, I see edit issues that sort of surprise me as are pointed out by the incredibly talented Al Chaput, below, in his critique.

That said, the fascination I feel when reading RT's stories is not compromised. The writing is so good I really don't care about a missing comma. It's irony really, as normally I stumble on writing that has this many issues of puncuation.

Many writers who command language as well as RT, have a problem in my opinion of writing 'over the head' of the average reader. RT has the ability to practically teach as he goes. Freaking amazing actually because even when I encounter words I would normally need to reference a thesaurus on, I have no need as they have been utilized in a mnner leaving me completely understanding their meaning. I'm not going to spend any more time trying to explain this. RT is a brilliant writer, a fantastic storyteller and as creative a literary mind as anyone I have ever read in my lifetime. Big statement, yes, fact is...all it takes is reading eight or nine chapters of his work and one is left with absolutely no choice but to agree.

Weaving detail: Holy smoke! Now I know RT is a Sherlock Holmes buff. (I've read his own SH story) The fact is, I see a hint of Doyle, Hammet and other prolific detective writers in RT's work yet I see the independance he lays out as his own as well. RT implements a modernized twist to narrative writing that is most impressive. He sets up his detail with a crafty, very clever and most efficient economy. (No wasted words) This story gives an excellent example to young writers of exactly "how to" move a story along.

For example: In the all-important first chapter, Derek Clymer is characterized in less than 200 words. Essentially, most of us would take time to describe his facial features, general appearance, etc,.. RT does not do that first, electing instead to come in from a flank that I think works. Here is why: his character has less to do with what he looks like than who he is from the sense that the story is about 'what' he is at first. Ironic. At least to me, because normally I would immediately critisize the fact that the author did not tell us what the protag looked like at first opportunity.

The bit where the author makes sure we understand that Derek "keeps an eagle eye" on the money that is being counted tells us much more at the time in which it is told than what color hair he has or if his chin has a dimple.

In the very first chapter we get an immediate grip on the scam. RT paints it out quite clearly, we know exactly what is going on, how it is being orchestrated and understand the methodology employed. All the while, it is the dialogue of the characters that tells this to us, NOT narrative. Not a single word of the skeem is portrayed in narrative!!! This is another lesson, riding almost 'under the radar' in how to do a 'set-up'. Simply frigging brilliant!!!

By the time I began reading CH2, I felt like I had read half a book. Bob's problems, who Derek is, the scam, the setting, all laid out already, waiting for complex additive to plot. Essentially, one has no choice at the end of CH1 but to turn the page, (last objective of the all-important first chapter)

(In CH2, three consecutive paragraphs start with the word 'This'. Just saying...)

The characterization of Bert Weems is excellent! We know exactly who this guy is and the angle in which the author is beinging him in to the script. (Or at least I think)

In two chapters, the author has successfully set up a brilliant stage for what is to come. The details are so carefully timed so as to allow the reader to digest them at a smooth pace. This is the type of stuff I was referring to earlier in my comments about Rayond Terry. Everything moves the story forward. Here we have a plot with many characters, yet, I feel them all, I know who they are, how they play and have a grasp for the plot that makes me again feel the need to immediately turn the page and begin CH3 without hesitation.

The switch to 'scene flashing' in CH3 is again, unique. Each of the three scenes moves the story significantly forward by adding the element of mystery and requiring the reader to begin what i suppose will be a constant need to start forming hypothesis of the anticipated storyline. The plot is deepening nicely, at a great pace, like a rolling snowball in an avalanche.

A simple fluxuation of sorts begins in CH4 as dialogue becomes the catylist. The careful balance of narrative support is obvious now. Because there are so many characters in this story, it appears to me that the author is now gradually allowing them to take over. The style of this writing technique is simply freaking amazing. I would normally critisize this (I think I have said that already somewhere) but with the way this story is being laid out, it works perfectly. It is like the author is adjusting his narrative / dialogue balance as he goes. Almost predictably, like he was giving to this as opposed to just writing a story and letting it go.

By CH8 we have the equivilent of a fast-paced 'movie in the mind' going on. The plot is fabulous, the characters are now well-established identities and their roles perfectly balanced. Scene descriptions are crisp, but if anything I could crit, I would say that the author could have taken time to add a little about each location where things are taking place. Then again, I wonder why I say this as the story certainly lacks no punch. I guess I'm repeating what I've been told. Again, unique.

The author is clearly a well-traveled individual. He's been around. As the scenes move from one place and character to another, I get the feel that each and every part is now adding immense value to the story and plot. Moving along smoothly is an understatement, this story is running in the fast lane.

The pace of 'scene flashing' has now accelerated to another level. The slow build-up of this technique was a lesson in plot writing from the on-set. As the author slowly began to increment more dialogue as his characters became strionger and better known to the reader, he relaxes his narrative and lets them take the pace of the story. This is especially true with Jimmy Terrebone. I find that even though he was not brought in to the story during longer first chapters, his element of influence in the story being high is not compromised by that fact. Again, something I would normally critisize but it works here. THAT is the thing most unique about RT's ability to deliver plot. It is simply so well crafted that pace is unaffected by ANY of the normal rules of writing mystery or thriller type plot.

I've been careful not to discuss the exact details of the ploot so it does not give anything away to the reader. After reading this, I know I appreciate the fact that i knew nothing going in. I'm completely ready to declare this one of the best books I've ever read in my life. Of course, it falls straight into the genre in which I most enjoy and attempt to write but that is the case with a reader who will buy a book. I can say this, a reader will certainly not be disappointed in this book.

My only reservation, which I struggle to call such, is the fact that commas are left out in dialogue tags preceeding people's names. The thing is, it is consistant and RT does not sway from this. I forgot about it a few chapters in and while I consider it strange, I get the idea it is simply another of his 'trademarks'. I guess if Cormac McCarthy can go a whole book without any puncuation what so ever, RT can leave out commas if he wants to. Here is my philosophy on that: If you intend to break the rules, be consistent. RT is that.

All in all, this is a fantastic book. I would challenge any Thriller lover to read this and put it down. Go ahead mystery lovers, pick this story's clues apart and find a bump. Can't do it. It is so well constructed, so perfectly complimented by detail that it can do nothing but entertain. Just merely the way he captures the essence of each character's speech, habits and attitude is compelling. This is another element that makes this a fine read. The style changes, flashing scenes, intricate plot and characterizations are unique to Raymond Terry. While this writing bears similarities to great writers that could be mentioned, I think the greatest compliment of all would be that this is a Raymond Terry story...PERIOD!

Kudos for RT. A stand-alone classic that should be read by the masses. Well-done. Excellent read!

RossBrodie wrote 1044 days ago

Taut, muscular, dripping in the wire, hard-boiled. Great title and cool pitch. I really like the idea of constructing a city for the purposes of gambling. The purposes of speculation.

And immediately I'm thinking about how the genre is so vibrant in terms of reflecting the implied message of the rampant capitalist monster.

I think it's a very noble and bold idea to create a story about a guy who creates an architectural environment for the purpose of extracting cash from people who are prepared to lose it. Is this perhaps a metaphor for our own capitalist dilemma? For the banks themselves?

I skipped about and then went straight to chapter 13, all these taillights and telephone conversations, and alcohol and cigarettes and then his mind, weighed down with corruption and suspicion. It's the stuff of really good engaging fiction and I think you pull it off. Also agree about JG Ballard comparison - the idea of using landscape and buildings to mirror/ develop psychology./ This is so much more mature and real than most the authonomy slush pile chick lit


Sent from my iPhone

Michael Jones wrote 1050 days ago

At last, something to get my teeth into ...

Great storyline. I'm looking forward to finishing it.

Jon

billysunday wrote 1078 days ago

Very polished and well-written. Quite an intricate plot. My only critique is that it can be too wordy at times. Nice job.
Dina of Halo of the Damned and The Last Degree

Norton Stone wrote 1079 days ago

I'll get onto this Raymond. Grrrreat title and a cover to kill for.

Bill Scott wrote 1079 days ago

You are obviously a seasoned writer. This is extremely well written and i enjoyed it. I only had time for chapter one as I'm off to meet friends for dinner, but will add you to my WL and continue on.

Here are the only places where I got hung up. They are minor and the first one is actually a reflection of my own inadequacies as a reader. 1- The sentence with "countenance and presage" I had to get the dictionary out to understand the sentence, which as I said is my own inadequacy , but it interrupted the flow of reading for me. I loved learning the word "presage." See if anyone else mentions it. Basically I guess you're too smart for me. :)
2- The sentence "After all, . . . he was it" The "he was it" part just seemed off to me, like it should have been "it was he" which is also off for me in that it seems formal. If it reads fine to you ignore me.
3- The sentence "James On . . ." I didn't understand the "James" It read ok without it but the JAMES through me. I'm actually curious about this one so educate me if you don't mind.

I think I can learn a lot from your writing style so I'll check back in and read more, but can keep my comments to myself if you find them a bore.
Best
Bill Scott
Haktaw Heart

Walden Carrington wrote 1093 days ago

Raymond,
You have a mesmerizing and gripping plot in CondoMAXimum. It's interesting to see a story take place in the future which is less than two years away. I like the headings designating exact times as it helps bring the reader into the moment. These are strange goings on for a place called Paradise Beach Florida, but this bizarre plot is most appropriate for the thriller genre.

Walden Carrington
Titanic: Rose Walsh McLean's Story

Gideon McLane wrote 1094 days ago

"CondoMAXimum" - Raymond Terry. I read the 1st 2 chapters and scanned several comments. The style reminds me of detective noir. You place the reader in the scene well. Some thoughts: Carolina Al has covered the grammar; chapter 1: - "...a man to reserve his comforts." - reserve? maybe need another work - sounds odd when read aloud - perhaps "enjoyed his comforts"; chapter 2: suggest "two fans revolved in drunken elliptical motion... "." Out on the street.... " - removes run on sentence; "One look... suntanned" - needs broken up and rewritten - suggest ". . .suntan face behind dark glasses mostly hidden by a deep brim hat . . ."; A fun read. Bookshelf for tone and characters.

Gideon ("Thrill Writer's Remorse")

Raymond Terry wrote 1097 days ago

I read your first chapter.

Thanks Al. Note. Chapter one here is a very old edit. With the number of books I have posted here and the rest of life in general I have very little time to update each chapter of every book but I'm getting to it. Thanks for looking at this so closely. RT

CarolinaAl wrote 1097 days ago

I read your first chapter.

General comments: A gripping start. A fascinating main character, though I would have liked to have spent more time in his head getting to know him better. Good descriptions. Good tension. Good pacing.

Specific comments on the first chapter:
1) "Come on We got time." Was all he said. Comma after 'time' and 'Was' should be lowercase. 'Was all he said' is a dialogue tag (tells who said something). When a dialogue tag follows dialogue, the last sentence of dialogue is punctuated with a comma (unless it's a question or exclamation) and the first word of the dialogue tag is lowercase.
2) "Never again uncle Jake, never again." Comma after the first 'again.' When you address someone in dialogue, offset their name or title with commas. There are more cases where you address someone in dialogue, but didn't offset their name or title with commas. Also, capitalize 'uncle.' When a kinship term is paired with a person's name the kinship term becomes a part of that name and a proper noun. Proper nouns are capitalized.
3) "A man's drink and the way we always make it." Jake said. Comma after 'it.' 'Jake said' is a dialogue tag (tells who said something). When a dialogue tag follows dialogue, the last sentence of dialogue is punctuated with a comma (unless it's a question or exclamation). There are more cases where dialogue followed with a dialogue tag is punctuated with a period when a comma is appropriate.
4)'6:45PM' should be '6:45 p.m.'
5) ' ... with an eagles eye view of the green monster, ... ' Eagles (plural) should be eagle's (possessive).
6) "It's going to be Okay Bob." 'Okay' should be lowercase. Also, as mentioned above, put a comma after 'okay' because 'Bob' is being addressed.
7) "Yes siree, Mister Clymer," He said ... 'He' should be lowercase. 'He said' is a dialogue tag (tells who said something). When a dialogue tag follows dialogue, the first word of the dialogue tag is lowercase (unless it's a person's name).
8) The conversation between Jimmy and Derek goes on and on without indicating the men's thoughts or emotions. Allso, there is no description of physical movement during the conversation.

I hope this critique helps you further polish your all important first chapter. These are just my opinions. Use what works for you and discard the rest.

Would you please take a look at "Savannah Fire" and, if it's worthy, keep it in mind when you next reshuffle your bookshelf?

Have a marvelous day.

Al

lafrattajoe wrote 1107 days ago

Now this is my kind of book. The characters must be based on real people because I feel like I know them. Although a work of fiction it reads like a story that could happen in any city in America.

I have spent my life around gambling and you have explained the topic very well. You must have done your homework.

Well done Sir and I love the cover.
Joe LaFratta

Dedalus wrote 1165 days ago

Hi Raymond,

I've read the first three chapters. I have a mixed reaction to it. I think the story is great and the characters interesting. The very first piece of the first chapter I found confusing. In fact I found the first chapter to be rather weak overall and only began to like the it from the second chapter onwards - actually as soon as I read the first sentence of the second chapter I thought "This writing is a lot better."

The crux of the matter lies in, I think, the fact that I found your narrative far superior to the dialogue. I thought it explained too much in the first chapter and didn't flow smoothly - it was too broken and made reading difficult. Your narrative on the other hand flowed smoothly and was a joy to read. I was going to back the book on the basis of the second chapter until I got to the conversation between Weems and DiLauro and there I found the dialogue, yet again, to let you down. I felt completely lost here - I didn't know who was saying what - the order of it didn't seem to make sense - and again it was broken and difficult to read requiring me to go back and read it over. I also found the sudden shift of viewpoint from Weems to DiLauro to disrupt the flow of the whole chapter.

The small bit of dialogue in chapter three didn't have the problem, but then there wasn't as much of it.


The characters I felt were excellent. Particularly that of Weems. Three-dimensional people and all individual from one another. I feel that by the end of the third chapter you could have done with having a female character, because all of the men were very masculine.


I can't think of anything else to say, but if you have any questions ask away,
Joe

Jay Adiyarath wrote 1169 days ago

Dear Raymond,

From the word go, it's been quite a read. The prose is tight except at a couple of places and the dialogue is catchy. It is destined to climb up the charts quickly.
In order to help it along I have starred it and backed it.

All the best... to ultimately find a publisher.

Jay Adiyarath
EXPIRY DATE

Owen Quinn wrote 1458 days ago

globe trotting epic filled with action, excitement and character.

John Connor wrote 1495 days ago

Firstly, nice to see this is complete - shows you're committed to the beast, which is always a good sign.

There are times when it reads like Lawrence Shames/Carl Hiaasen with a touch of Elmore Leonard - three writers who I admire, and you capture the reader in the same way.

And as mentioned below, it has a very polished and professional feel to the MS - and if you haven't thought about doing so, then maybe pitching this to the likes of No Exit Press - or a crime/thriller specialist publisher (rather than just a general publisher) might be more advantageous.

Read, enjoyed and backed with pleasure.

SusieGulick wrote 1501 days ago

Dear Raymond, This is your 3rd book that I am backing. :) I like that you put me right there in the action with your incredible writing. There are 2 Indian gambling places where my sister lives in Oroville, California - she took me there when I visited her (I live in Southern California) - I really enjoyed the nickle machines. :) Hope you'll take a moment to back my 2 books. :) Thanks. :) Love, Susie :)

yasmin esack wrote 1551 days ago

Dear Raymond
this is quite a read. A huge book this one is and your writing is of the class of James joyce or even better.
The man in the Hawaiian shirt was well decribed as is the entire setting.
backed with pleasure
the lord of the dwn. beyond 2012

toussaint wrote 1551 days ago

CondoMaximum

[Thank you for returning my backing. T. ☼☼☼☼☼]

You know I really didn’t think that was going to work. The opening felt a bit over long. But it is beautifully narrated and gets inside Weem’s head. The tension is simple, is the deal going to come off? Weem’s predicament is excellently detailed and the tension mounts as DiLauro gets later and later. But when Nathan finally shows up it literally explodes as their acrimonious confrontation evolves. The dialogue and characterisation is fantastic! The rest, as they say, is history. The feds are onto them and have it all on tape. Brilliant. Tom Sawyer is also on the case. The game’s afoot!. It is a bit odd that the action in chapter one follows the long pitch. It’s almost as if the long pitch is acting as a sneak prologue. Perhaps you fill in this backstory later, but I only read the first chapter. Either way this is a great story with wonderful characters and even more fluent dialogue, quite some of the best I’ve seen on here yet. When you want to the pace is fast and when you want to build the tension you layer it on with a trowel.

I am backing this, and would be delighted if you can find the time to take a look at Bokassa’s Last Apostle in return. Thanks.

bonalibro wrote 1553 days ago

Sounds like Florida. I lived there for a short time and never knew a place so corrupted. Excellent writing.

One niggle, would crabs enjoy something ravenously?

Tim Chambers
Moonbeam Highway

Marie DuGar Bell wrote 1555 days ago

Very interesting story! Character driven by the use of great language! An utter suspension of disbelief, but belief at the same time of how people truly are. There is excitement in your dialogue that keeps the reader going. I am backing you with admiration and wishes for your success in publishing! Thanks for sharing your story. Sincerely. Marie - 'Mud Pies and Spirits' and 'Spirits Never Die'

Famlavan wrote 1561 days ago

CondoMaximum

Gosh this is an immense storyline
Very astutely constructed plot, with, for me brilliant characterisation. Great narrative, great dialogue, great book. Very professional!

carlashmore wrote 1562 days ago

There is a fantastic pace to this, Ray. You back this up with some quite lyrical prose and great characters and it is clear that you have a winning recipe. I love a good thriller and this is one of the best on the site.
Carl
The Time Hunters

carlashmore wrote 1570 days ago

Damn , you can write. There was an asured intelligence to this without ever coming across as pretentious. Your prose is rich, lyrical yet always gripping for an adult audience. I thought it was fantastic. Well done. Carl. The time Hunters

jfredlee wrote 1572 days ago

Raymond -

Whoa, and I thought Carl Hiaasen had a lock on all the loonies and scumbags in south Florida.

Damn, this is good writing. Could be the literary love child of union between Hiaasen and either John D. MacDonald or Elmore Leonard. And that's some damn good company.

Gonna back this, then knock back a few Coronas and a bowl of conch chowder.

Best of luck here, and I'd love to get your take on my book.

Thanks for sharing with us.

- Jeff Lee
THE LADIES TEMPERANCE CLUB'S FAREWELL TOUR

Melcom wrote 1589 days ago

Extremeley well written, very polished. I can't understand why this great book has a red arrow against it.

Your dialogue is some of the best I've read on the site.

Happily shelved

Melxx

Bamboo Promise wrote 1598 days ago

You are a Florida boy. I have been there once, couldn't see all. Your book helped me to see more. Well-written. Beautiful story. Backed with enthusiasm. Bamboo Promise

lionel25 wrote 1602 days ago

Raymond, good work on Chapter One. In the opening sentence, I'd probably rewrite "north Florida" as "North Florida."

Happy to back this.

Joffrey (The Silver Spoon Effect)

leroy38 wrote 1606 days ago

Very well written and quite polished. Being this is my neighborhood too, I think you’ve well captured the social, political, financial a development changes this area has undergone (and continues too). I have not criticisms and quite enjoyed the read.

Nick Poole2 wrote 1607 days ago

This is darn tooting fun. The man with the straw hat, sun burn and Hawaiian shirt. Running to fat. And no mental giant.

Successful Developer.

tee hee

Bertram Weems. Broke.

And now Nathan DiLauro. What a cast of deadbeats and sleazy operators. I love the way you build the picture and the tension with words piled upon words.

I'll even forgive you talking direct to the reader as it works all right here.

The dialogue SINGS. I tell you Sir, it sings. "Sowat, you fat fuck." Poetry.

Poor old Weems. Not great at negotiating. No wonder he loses at cards.

This is so sublime.

I shall shelve.

Nick
"Mirror In The Sky" (Hoping to keep it on the desk today)

David Fearnhead wrote 1615 days ago

This read like i'd just picked it up from the crime shelf in the bookstore.
No nitpicks.
From the very first word you pull the reader into the story and hold us there with excellent descriptions.
Punchy dialogue, It's spent a good few days on my shelf because of it.
David
Bailey of the Saints.

Jared wrote 1632 days ago

Raymond, as a fellow writer of crime fiction I'm always pleased to see a crime novel arrive on the site, especially one of this quality. You use the word "intrigue" in your well-crafted pitches and that's appropriate as this is an intriguing premise. Exotic locations, a believable and engaging MC and a strong story-line are plus points, but it's the sheer quality of the writing that gripped me. This is very fine work and I'd happily read the whole book in a different format. Backed, emphatically.
Jared.

Raymond Crane wrote 1654 days ago

On my WL and I agree with John McCoy - a pleasure - thanks!

S Richard Betterton wrote 1654 days ago

The voice comes across loud and clear in the pitch - that would make anyone open the book and start to read. And they wouldn't be disappointed. The only thing I was wondering about early on was the lack of dialogue, but then it came and it was great! You use 'Bert Weems' a lot, rather than just 'Bert' or 'Weems', whereas with Nathan DiLaurio you do vary it a bit. It seems part of the voice to use the full name so often, but maybe you could vary Weems a bit more.
Anyway, great stuff!
Cheers,
Simon

Jason Rice wrote 1655 days ago

This is high style, I don't know if your around to read this, but I liked it.

Sly80 wrote 1662 days ago

'He was a child of privilege and a product of nepotism' ... 'Right now, today, in fact' ... the narrator is very much present in this atmospheric, semi-eccentric story. 'kiting and commingling funds' the language is a delight, and the expertise shines through. 'just exactly that' I would normally see as redundant, but from this 'storyteller' it has charm. Indeed, I've never seen sweat described so interestingly. 'Promptly stepped on his own dick' priceless! Wheels within wheels ... Tom appears to be the smartest dude in this game. The plot sounds like a winning formula, but what really drives CondoMaximum forward and makes it stand out, is the extraordinary 'voice'. I'll message a few suggestions to you, Raymond, but this is going on my shelf.

LN wrote 1664 days ago

Hello Raymond,

Excellent descriptions. Eloquent prose. Punchy dialogs. A great premise. What more could a reader ask for?

Backed.

Lalit Navani ( Femme Fatale )

ElizaW wrote 1666 days ago

Entertaining and witty. You have a particular gift for descriptions.

You have my vote.

El
(Reckless Scarlett)

Lynne wrote 1668 days ago

This really makes me want to visit Florida. It just sounds wonderful. Very well written and a good story. On my shelf. Lynne, Brooklyn Bridge.

Francis Albert McGrath wrote 1668 days ago

Brilliant opening. Only quibble is that I've heard that editors/agents do not like books that open with weather. It's obvious Florida is warm. Also, no need to specify the Hummer is "dark green"... irrelevant to the story. Seriously though, this is first class. I place it at 22 out of 22 on my scale of "Most Excellent."
Frank

John Harold McCoy wrote 1669 days ago

Hi Raymond. Well, when they're about Florida they get my vote right off the bat since I'm a Florida boy. I just read your first and second chapters. Really nice writing. Very clean, nice flow, easy to read. If the rest of it is as good as these first two then you've got a winner. I'll probably be back to read the rest of it cause I never miss one about Florida. Darn good job, Raymond. On my shelf and the best of luck with it.

John Harold McCoy - Bramwell Valley

Ruth Francisco wrote 1674 days ago

The heir apparent to Carl Hiaasen. Outstanding prose. You should do well with this.
Ruth
Amsterdam 2012

gillyflower wrote 1674 days ago

An interesting pitch which gives promise of an unusual plot. Your characters, while it would be hard to call them likable, have a gritty reality, and therefore can hold our interest. Your writing has no noticeable glitches, and your dialogue is individual, natural sounding, and sparky. Backed.
Gerry McCullough,
Belfast Girls.

AlanMarling wrote 1675 days ago

Dear Raymond Terry,

Thank you for sharing your story with us. Crabs picking a skeleton clean provides a striking if grotesque visual. You spend a deal of time introducing Bertram Weems, and I do feel that I know him well; my favorite detail was that he relied on spy movies for his knowledge of discretion. A pity that James Bond was the opposite of discrete. I liked “stillborn breath”. The thyroid disease is a good humanizing detail. Like the crabs earlier, your description of dripping sweat was great and all too visual.

In my fallible opinion, you could make your pitch even more enticing by including some of your ‘tags’ in it: skimming, casinos, and murder. That’s a whole trifecta of interest your pitch hasn’t even tapped into yet.

Best wishes,
Alan Marling

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