Lucky You

(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

A native of Florida, Carl Hiaasen has made a career of delving into the absurd goings-on that seem to be commonplace in the tropical world of Florida. Since 1976, Hiaasen has worked for THE MIAMI HERALD as an investigative reporter and, more recently, as a columnist. He is also the author of a number of wildly funny satires, including TOURIST SEASON (1986), NATIVE TONGUE (1991), STRIP TEASE (1993), and STORMY WEATHER (1995). As someone who cares very deeply about the fate of Florida, Hiaasen has employed satire on such targets as corrupt public officials, greedy businessmen, and thoughtless tourists.

LUCKY YOU is set in the small town of Grange, Florida. It has become famous for its fiberglass Madonna that sheds tears and a road-stain that resembles the face of Jesus. The protagonist of the novel is JoLayne Lucks, a black veterinary assistant who resides in Grange. For several years, she has played the Florida lottery using the same six numbers. These numbers (17, 19, 22, 24, 27, and 30) represent how old she was when she ended each of her six love affairs. Although leery of men, Lucks is generally happy and has visions of doing her part to save the local environment. She would like to purchase a wilderness area in order to protect it from being ruined by developers. Her luck takes a definite turn for the better when she discovers that she is holding the winning lottery ticket worth twenty-eight million dollars. Since another winning ticket also was...

(The entire section is 451 words.)