"Sweet Mary shimmers with authentic Florida heat," says author Carl Hiaasen, right on the glossy front cover of the book. This arrived in the mail and is a new novel I'm looking forward to reading.
The plot revolves around a case of mistaken identity. In this case, a woman with a long name, Dulce Maria "Mary" Guevara, is accused of being a "cocaine queen" and sets out to clear her name by going after the real culprit. This begins a set of adventures in Florida!
The author, Liz Balmaseda, is a Cuban-American Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who works for The Palm Beach Post. She knows Florida and her territory. Sweet Mary is her first novel.
Update:I've finished the book, a fairly quick read. I found the plot pretty predictable and the book a "routine" mystery. There are no twists or turns in the story line, no violence per se, and no elaborate endings. A nice mystery that's definitely not a thriller as initial descriptions may have suggested.
Enjoyable, especially for the portrayal of a divorced mother trying to clear her name so she can take care of her son Max while avoiding any new conflicts with her ex-husband Tony and his new wife. Tony tried to get sole custody of Max while Sweet Mary was in jail and even after charges against her as the "cocaine queen" were dropped.
An answer to a plot query from Michael re the plot: Mary set out to prove her innocence so she could regain joint custody of Max and avoid a drawn out custody battle with said ex! A lot of people will find her quite a sympathetic character. Great mom! I do recommend this for a nice summer read!
(Book received from the publisher for my objective review.)