Thursday, April 22, 2010

Point Dume-Katie Arnoldi

Point Dume
Katie Arnoldi
Overlook, May 13 2020, $24.95
ISBN: 9781590203293

In Point Dume, California, thirty-five year old Ellis Gardner is considered by most knowledgeable folks in the area as the top female surfer. Affluent mommas leave their extravagant mansions high on the cliffs to receive lessons from Ellis. Her childhood friend Pablo Schwartz is also a surfing instructor, but lately he has been making more money selling marijuana planted by the Mexican cartels on the hillside of the ignorant wealthy Americans. He loves Ellis, but competes for her affection with middle aged Frank Bane, who has recently discovered surfing, mostly because he is in heat over Ellis. Ironically his wife Janice is the best weed customer of his rival for Ellis’ affection.

Felix Duarte sneaks across the border to guard a cartel’s marijuana patch as someone is ripping off the Mexican mob. The job is deadly and lonely but the pay is excellent. When he catches the thief, he knows what he must do; if he fails to catch the thief in a timely manner he also knows what his employer will do to him.

Point Dume is an odd character driven thriller that rotates meeting the prime cast in order to understand their motives and especially their personal issues. The links between the players are surfing, sexing and smoking, yet no one seems in control of their life. Fascinating and timely, readers who enjoy cultivating a counter culture saga that lampoons the zealousness of the anti drug trafficking crowd (that ironically supports the right to sell guns to anyone even those who sell illegal drugs) will want to surf at Point Dume.

Harriet Klausner

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