Reviewed by Donna
TITLE: Fishy Riot
AUTHOR: Lindsey Black
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 249 Pages
RELEASE DATE: April 24, 2017
Most people think riot squad officer Taylor Jameson is an asshole. Little do they know his apparent indifference stems from having a meddlesome family always butting into his business. And little does Taylor know he’s about to stumble into a situation that’ll make indifference impossible.
When everything goes horribly wrong at a political rally on a harbour ferry, Taylor encounters Sietta Salisbury. The son of a wealthy politician, Sietta is a revered—but presumed dead—musician, and an enigma who is so strange, Taylor is compelled to look into his background. What he discovers draws him into a bizarre mess of prisoners, politics, and attempted murder that makes him realise what he’s been missing.
Falling in love isn’t hard. Trying to convince someone else you’re worth loving despite your crazy family and the people trying to kill you? That’s a whole other can of worms.
I don’t exactly know why, but every time I read the title – Fishy Riot – I start singing the Redfoo song, Juicy Wiggle. And funnily enough, that song works pretty well as a sound track to this book. As in, some bits are pretty nuts. My first attempt to read Fishy Riot was aborted after only a few pages. Something about the writing just didn’t work for me and I assumed that the author just didn’t do a great job of it. Luckily for me, seeing as this was a review book, I had to pick it back up again and read on. And I realized what the problem was. This was a case of – it’s not you, it’s me. I had this preconceived notion of how the book was going to be. Taylor was going to have zero sense of humor. He’d be a badass SWAT type cop who‘s perfect at everything and the scenes with him on the job (the first scene in the book) would include intense moments with absolutely no levity. Well, that isn’t how the author wrote this book. And once I figured that out, I couldn’t have enjoyed it more. Fishy Riot is actually a perfect blend of serious issues and rather Australian humor. Is the humor too Australian? I don’t think so but I guess readers will need to judge that for themselves.
The characters are brilliantly written and not just the main characters, but Taylor’s family and the team of eight officers. There are some books where I hate the interruption of secondary characters, but this bunch was so entertaining that I looked forward to them appearing on page.
Sietta, though, was by far my favourite character. The author has somehow created a character that literally needs to be rescued, but at the same time Sietta is one of the strongest characters I’ve read in a while. The situation that he’s in should be unbelievably over the top, but Lindsey Black made it all seem plausible.
I guess I should add here that the only character that I didn’t like was Emma. The kid bugged me; it’s as simple as that. Some readers might find her hilarious – I’ll admit that she comes out with some classic lines – but I just found myself wanting to toss the little shit out the nearest window.
I also appreciated the political jabs that the author got in. As an Australian who is both frustrated and disgusted at the antics of politicians in this country, I loved the chance to see these men and women (even if they are just fictional ones) get what they deserve. And I think that’s something that will speak to many readers no matter their nationality, considering the state of world politics at the moment. But never fear, the story is hardly politics heavy.
I was absolutely impressed with this author’s first m/m offering and can’t wait to see what she writes next.