cover image Cuba Straits

Cuba Straits

Randy Wayne White, read by George Guidall. Penguin Audio, , unabridged, 8 CDs, 9.5 hrs., $40 ISBN 978-1-61176-388-1

White’s popular series hero, Florida-based marine biologist Marion “Doc” Ford, is drawn into his 22nd adventure by General Juan Rivera, a larcenous “frenemy” who smuggles Cuban baseball players into the U.S. when he isn’t wheeling and dealing in valuable artifacts. His latest human import, a dim-witted shortstop named Figueroa Casanova, has gone astray with a briefcase full of love letters penned by Fidel Castro in the 1950s and early ’60s. When Doc learns that the briefcase contains not only a young rebel’s billet-doux but something more significant, which homicidal Russian KGB agents desperately covet, he’s compelled to head to Cuba to find Tomlinson and warn him. Serious danger and slapstick humor await. Reader Guidall’s avuncular growl is a perfect fit for Doc, who’s beginning to express middle-age musings of self-doubt. The Cubans, notably the general and Figueroa, as well as the Russians, natter in acceptably accented English. And as an added plus, Guidall expresses convincing enthusiasm while delivering White’s loving descriptions of Florida’s flora and sea fauna, as well as the fascinating bits of local history that give this series its gravitas. A Putnam hardcover. (Mar.)