Vacation Therapy

Lance Zarimba
Vacation Therapy
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MLR Books
Release Date
February 2011

Welcome to Club Fred

Taylor's best friend, Molly planned his perfect vacation. Checking into an all male resort, he and Sergio discover a dead body, which disappears. As Taylor stumbles over it again, the problems have only started in this tropical paradise.

Taylor befriends the hottest male porn star, an angry drag queen, and a mystery novelist, whose new novel is paralleling Taylor's trip. Men are dropping at his feet, dead, and Taylor needs to escape this trip to hell.

Mother Nature has other plans. Now, Taylor must blend in and with the hindrance of Sergio, he'll be in the spotlight for sure. This duo is turning Club Fred into Club Dead.

Book Review by aobibliophile (reviewer)
Jul 13, 2011   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
261 people found the following review helpful
A promising first book in a series, VACATION THERAPY chronicles the adventures and misadventures of an unlikely hero and his sidekick.

Taylor Kozlowski, of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, is an Occupational Therapist en route to Mexico for a much-deserved vacation. His best friend Molly took care of the travel arrangements. Club Med, however, turned out to be Club Fred, an all male resort. Upon Taylor's arrival and much to his surprise, he is welcomed by Sergio, Molly's hair stylist. They end up rooming together.

Despite his misgivings about the Club, Taylor decides to play tourist and make the most of his holiday. Unfortunately, he discovers a dead body in his bathroom, which later disappears. Later, as Taylor takes a stroll along the beach, he stumbles upon the same corpse. More dead bodies turn up and Taylor and Sergio may well become the next ones.

Mystery and humor combine to make this novel a pleasure to read. What better way to assemble a cast of eclectic characters than putting them all together in a tropical paradise resort. Throw in some dead bodies, unleash a hurricane for good measure, place the perpetrator in the shadows and what do you have? A classic fast-paced whodunit!

Taylor, the protagonist, is a mystery himself. He claims to be straight and acts and thinks like one. If there is anything in the book that says otherwise, I did not find any. Perhaps I might have missed something and it makes me wonder if this was a deliberate move by the author to make readers question Taylor's "real" sexuality. Still, he plays along with Sergio's flirtations and ribbing albeit in a good-natured way.

Sergio, our deuteragonist, is a hoot! He is flamboyant, outrageous and funny but shows his serious side when he and Taylor face their unknown adversary. I was rooting for something passionate to develop between them but tough luck. However, I did like how their relationship and friendship progressed because of the circumstances they find themselves in.

The rest of the players are interesting as well. Readers will meet:

Tom - the hottest star in gay movies who finds himself a loner despite his popularity
Logan Zachary - the murder mystery writer whose latest book idea seems to have come literally to life
Sean - Tom's agent who gets all furious every time he sees his star with another guest
David Ferron and David Campbell - the odd couple; also known as Chubby David and Skinny David
Cha-Cha - the drag queen
Mike, John and Gary - the resort's hosts
Geoff - the Jamaican bartender and GO (Gracious Organizer)

Each has secrets and finding out what they were and how they were linked made me plow through the book with gusto.

I admit, though, to expecting some heat but there were no implied or graphic situations in this book except perhaps for a teeny-weeny seduction scene which went awry. Somehow, the lack of anything romantic made for a refreshing read but still ...

As I look forward to our "crime-solving" duo's next case, I hope some of my niggles would be resolved. Will Taylor finally realize where his true North lies? Will there be fireworks between him and Sergio or someone else? Will there be romance in the air and then some? Will the next installment be hotter and more exciting? I hope author Lance Zarimba won't disappoint his readers and I can hardly wait to find out!
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