by Stephen J. Cannell
Meet Chick Best—a middle-aged, selfabsorbed, disaffected, California dot.com millionaire. Other than his house and high-priced foreign cars, Chick’s most expensive possession is his trophy wife, Evelyn. Evelyn is good at spending Chick’ money, money that has pretty much run out. Another problem is his drug-addled sixteen-year-old daughter, Melissa. Though concerned about his life and family, Chick has resigned himself to a miserable state of acceptance. That is, until he, Evelyn, and Melissa take a Christmas vacation in Maui. With this, Chick’s life changes…
Chick experiences unrequited love at first sight when he observes Paige Ellis emerging from the hotel swimming pool. His obsession, exceeded only by his need to possess her, isn’t diminished when he learns that she is happily married. Instead, he befriends Paige and her near-perfect husband, Chandler. A short time later, back from Hawaii, Chick’s obsession compels him to drive to Paige’s house, where he runs down and kills Chandler in a drugstore parking lot. But this is just the beginning of Chick’s nightmare as his life spirals homicidally out of control, resulting in the destruction of everything he holds dear. Will Paige learn the truth about Chick before it’s too late?
Chick Best is a loser, even though he tries very hard not to look or act like one. He became a millionaire during the dot.com boom and he has a trophy wife, fast car, and mini-mansion to prove it. What he doesn't have is the respect of his family or of himself for that matter, which makes him certifiable.
While on their annual family vacation in Maui, Chick falls instantly in love with Paige Ellis. He has never felt this way before and he'll do anything for five minutes of her time, including but not limited to making a complete fool of himself (in front of her Ken-doll husband). When business takes him cross country, Chick finds himself parked in front of Paige's home. After running Chandler (the husband) down in a parking lot, Chick decides he might have a chance with the woman of his dreams after all.
At First Site is a riot! Chick Best is by far one of the most annoying characters I've ever read, but that's precisely why I loved him! His personality was absolutely wretched, but it was so well written that I couldn't stop listening (audio book). I imagine that we have all felt inadequate in our lives at some time or another, so I guess I felt sorry for Chick. He's such a kook that you can't help but feel for him.
Great story! I give it:
I was saddened when I discovered that Stephen J. Connell passed away a few years ago. I regret that I didn't discover his awesome-ness sooner.
Check out his website for more info about his life and his impressive library of work.
I borrowed this audiobook from the Los Angeles County Library. All views and opinions expressed are my own.