2 Ways to Read Tim Dorsey Books in Order

Everyone knows the iconic, and sometimes unfathomable, Florida man headlines. With his experience as a newspaper journalist and a life lived in the iconic Sunshine State, Dorsey plucked those stories from the news and breathed life into them with the Tim Dorsey books in order.

These books follow the vigilante justice of Serge, a man with a tendency to commit murder and not entirely in touch with reality, and his perpetually high sidekick Coleman, as well as a few other characters who feel just as outlandish.

About Tim Dorsey

Tim Dorsey was born in Indiana but grew up in Florida and spent most of his life in the Sunshine State. Unfortunately, Dorsey passed away in November 2023 at the age of 62. The legacy he leaves behind is one of satire and clever observations through his writing.

His books, the Serge A. Storms series, pull directly from the strange and iconic Florida man headlines for some of the outlandish scenarios his main characters find themselves in. In addition to the satire about his beloved home state of Florida, Dorsey also includes a tremendous amount of trivia about the state and its history throughout the series.

Dorsey gave vivid descriptions of the sights and scenes his characters would witness along their travels, because he made sure to replicate the route himself to add that credibility.

Before he became an author, Dorsey was a journalist working various beats including police, courts, and politics. He was also an editor before he decided to pursue fiction writing full-time when his series became popular. His literary hero was Kurt Vonnegut.

Dorsey gave credit to his time as a journalist for contributing to his fiction writing. It was as a reporter that Dorsey learned so much about the history of Florida and its prolific crimes.

What was Tim Dorsey’s first book?

Tim Dorsey’s first book was the beginning of his Serge A. Storms series, Florida Roadkill, which was published in 1999.

The main character of Serge is an obsessive-compulsive serial killer, although he would prefer to be known as a sequential killer. Serge travels around Florida seeking out his own glory while meting out his own form of justice.

Often by Serge’s side is Coleman, who is even more frequently high. Throughout the series Dorsey introduces dozens of other characters from across Florida and beyond and some from the first book also make appearances in later books.

Tim Dorsey Books in Order

#1 – Serge A. Storm Books in Publication Order

The first, and best, way to read the Tim Dorsey books in order is by following the publication order to his popular Storm series. Dorsey later backtracked slightly and retconned some of his earlier choices, but this is still the best introduction to his writing and his characters.

Each book in the series does contain its own standalone adventure, but reading the book in order will follow Dorsey’s flow and growth. This way you will not stumble across any spoilers and you will also understand the callbacks to previous books and character reunions.

  1. Florida Roadkill (1999)
  2. Hammerhead Ranch Motel (2000)
  3. Orange Crush (2001)
  4. Triggerfish Twist (2002)
  5. The Stingray Shuffle (2003)
  6. Cadillac Beach (2004)
  7. Torpedo Juice (2005)
  8. The Big Bamboo (2006)
  9. Hurricane Punch (2007)
  10. Atomic Lobster (2008)
  11. Nuclear Jellyfish (2009)
  12. Gator A-Go-Go (2010)
  13. Electric Barracuda (2011)
  14. When Elves Attack (2011)
  15. Pineapple Grenade (2012)
  16. The Riptide Ultra-Glide (2013)
  17. Tropical Warning (2013) (Short Story)
  18. Tiger Shrimp Tango (2014)
  19. Shark Skin Suite (2015)
  20. Coconut Cowboy (2016)
  21. Clownfish Blues (2017)
  22. The Pope of Palm Beach (2018)
  23. No Sunscreen for the Dead (2019)
  24. Naked Came the Florida Man (2020)
  25. Tropic of Stupid (2021)
  26. Mermaid Confidential (2022)
  27. The Maltese Iguana (2023)

#2 – Serge A. Storms Books in Chronological Order

There is another way to read the Storms books, which is in chronological order. This order only varies slightly from the publication order and the differences are near the beginning of the series.

However, Florida Roadkill is still your best introduction to the characters and Dorsey’s writing, so this is best as a reread of the series to experience it in a new light. This reading order also does not include the short story Tropical Warning from 2013.

  1. Triggerfish Twist
  2. Florida Roadkill
  3. Hammerhead Ranch Motel
  4. The Stingray Shuffle
  5. Orange Crush
  6. Cadillac Beach
  7. Torpedo Juice
  8. The Big Bamboo
  9. Hurricane Punch
  10. Atomic Lobster
  11. Nuclear Jellyfish
  12. Gator A-Go-Go
  13. Electric Barracuda
  14. When Elves Attack
  15. Pineapple Grenade
  16. The Riptide Ultra-Glide
  17. Tiger Shrimp Tango
  18. Shark Skin Suite
  19. Coconut Cowboy
  20. Clownfish Blues
  21. The Pope of Palm Beach
  22. No Sunscreen for the Dead
  23. Naked Came the Florida Man
  24. Tropic of Stupid
  25. Mermaid Confidential
  26. The Maltese Iguana

Nonfiction Book

Tim Dorsey has one nonfiction book which is a collection of articles and essays that were previously published in newspapers and magazines. There are 25 pieces that Dorsey selected as representing various points of his career from early college humor to the first iterations of Serge to first-person accounts of his travels after the success of Florida Roadkill.

  1. Squall Lines (2012)


Finally, the last title in our list of the Tim Dorsey books in order is an anthology. This is the only anthology Dorsey contributed to during his lifetime, and it is a collection that focuses on the darker side of Tampa Bay which is entrenched in its history.

  1. Tampa Bay Noir (2020)

A Summary of Tim Dorsey Books in Order

If the premise of a sequential serial killer and his high best friend leaves you with more questions than answers, have no fear. Below you will find the summaries for the first ten books in the Serge A. Storms series. This will help explain in a bit more detail the type of antics and adventures Dorsey’s characters get up to.

Florida Roadkill Tim Dorsey Books in Order

1. Florida Roadkill

Serge A. Storms is full of random information about the Sunshine State and he loves eliminating jerks and pests with his drug-addled partner Coleman, who mostly loves cartoons. The unlikely duo are joined in this first book by Sharon Rhodes, a stripper who loves cocaine.

Meanwhile, Sean and David are two men who love fishing and are kind to animals. They are about to come across a suitcase stuffed with $5 million in stolen insurance money.

But Serge wants that money. Sharon wants the suitcase. Meanwhile, Coleman wants more drugs…and the suitcase.

Hammerhead Ranch Motel Serge A Storms

2. Hammerhead Ranch Motel

Local historical and spree killer Serge Storms has stopped keeping up with his meds and is still looking for a briefcase with $5 million.

There’s a different scheme or slimeball behind every door: Cocaine duckpins who have survived only by the dumbest fortune, hard-luck gigolos desperate to score, as well as undercover cops busting undercover cops who are running sting operations on undercover cops.

Serge is capable of wreaking more havoc than hurricane Rolando-berto, the storm brewing offshore, waiting for the opportunity to blow everything straight to hell.

Orange Crush Tim Dorsey

3. Orange Crush

Marlon Conrad is Florida’s governor by default and it seems like his re-election is in the bag. He is the Republicans’ golden boy, loyal and unquestioning, until he undergoes a radical personality shift during a bloody military action in the Balkans.

Now Marlon is talking about issues and reform just three weeks before the election as he tours from town-to-town with an amnesiac speechwriter and a chief of staff who turns catatonic in the presence of minorities.

But his new-found conscience may cost him the election and his life, as it appears that everyone from Tallahassee to Miami Beach is trying to kill him.

Triggerfish Twist Serge A Storms

4. Triggerfish Twist

This book takes place the summer before Florida Roadkill and follows Serge, Coleman, and Sharon once more along with a new Florida resident who is wholly unprepared for the events that ensue.

Jim Davenport is a family man from Indiana whose company transferred him to the Sunshine State. At first he thinks it’s a slice of heaven, but the cracks soon appear with the introduction of his strange neighbors. Then Jim commits murder and now Jim must rely on Serge, Coleman, and Sharon to navigate being hunted by his victim’s brother.

The Stingray Shuffle Tim Dorsey Books in Order

5. The Stingray Shuffle

No one is safe when Serge is off his medication. Not Russian hoods, Jamaican mobsters, spoiled frat boys, women’s book clubs, drug dealers, or bad Vegas-rejected local lounge acts. Especially not when $5 million in a suitcase is still missing.

But in the oddball circus known as the Sunshine State, little things like astronomical body counts tend to get lost in the shuffle.

Cadillac Beach Tim Dorsey

6. Cadillac Beach

Serge has just escaped from Florida’s state psychiatric hospital, the Chattahoochee, and is heading for Miami. He is set on solving his grandfather’s alleged suicide, which is tied to a dozen missing diamonds from Murph the Surf’s infamous 1964 jewel heist.

But Serge has also caught the attention of the mob and the FBI. He’s also launched a new specialty tour of Miami, which quickly results in a kidnapping with dire results.

Torpedo Juice Serge A Storms

7. Torpedo Juice

While he may keep it largely hidden, Serge Storms does have a romantic side. He’s had a lot of fun living life as a fugitive, but it’s also been lonely. So now that he’s in the Florida Keys, Serge sets his sights on a bride, and nothing will come between him and his soul mate when he finally hunts her down.

So begins an adventure to find his perfect match, which will involve Serge sleeping with an astonishing array of scoundrels. The course of true love is never smooth, but things quickly go wildly out of control with a lovesick Serge.

The Big Bamboo Tim Dorsey

8. The Big Bamboo

Unfortunately, Serge’s path to love didn’t quite pan out, so he has decided to shift his attention to trying to convince West Coast movie industry big wigs to do business in Florida.

He jets off to Tinseltown with Coleman to do the convincing. But it wouldn’t be an adventure with Serge and Coleman if they didn’t rid the population of a few slimeballs along the way.

Hurricane Punch Tim Dorsey Books in Order

9. Hurricane Punch

There are several hurricanes knocking on the door to Florida’s coast, which means Serge and Coleman are on their way storm-chasing. However, bodies begin piling up at an alarming rate, even for Florida.

A serial killer is on the loose, another one, and it’s offending Serge’s moral sensibilities. He vows that he’ll stop at nothing to uncover his rival and make things right.

Atomic Lobster Serge A Storms

10. Atomic Lobster

The tenth book in the Storms series brings with it a reunion of many previous characters. Atomic Lobster features appearances from Jim Davenport, the Diaz brothers, Johnny Vegas, and the criminal McGraw clan.

Meanwhile, the government is covering up a growing list of mysterious victims across Florida who may be connected to a nefarious plot against national security.

Final thoughts on Tim Dorsey books in order

Tim Dorsey’s Serge A. Storms books in order are laugh-out-loud funny mysteries. The focus of the series remains on the zany antics of Serge and his friends, but Dorsey also interjects thoughtful analysis and social commentary on Florida and America in his writing.

For any reader who is familiar with Florida, they will love Dorsey’s descriptions. That’s because he carefully planned and travelled the routes he describes in his books and peppers trivia and history throughout the series through Serge.

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