Bad Monkey by Carl Hiaasen has his usual entertaining blend of chaos and humor set in Florida. Yancy, a Key West cop, is in trouble over assaulting his girlfriend’s husband with a home cleaning appliance, his choice of venue was unfortunately quite public and cell phone videos proliferated. This hot headed misbehavior may cost him a job he is both good at and enjoys. The new police chief possesses political aspirations; he is most concerned with keeping the local business community and tourists happy. A detective starring on YouTube assaulting a citizen gets Yancy busted down to roach patrol. An assignment that plays havoc with his appetite. When a fisherman snags a human arm the chief just wants it to go away. Yancy is curious about who was attached to the appendage and what might have happened to him. They are at cross purposes, but Yancy has the vain hope that solving the increasingly complicated mystery will put him back in the chief’s good graces after his rather public plunge into YouTube notoriety. Adding to Yancy’s trouble is the new house next door. I really feel for Yancy, I also live next door to an unattractive gargantuan edifice constructed with no sensitivity to either aesthetics, the community or the environment. Like the house next door to mine, the new house next door to Yancy totally fails to blend into its forest setting. Felling trees, altering the habitat of wildlife, looming over the neighbors, altering the natural light, and causing a blight on the sylvan setting clearly shows the me-only attitude of having more money than sense. Haven’t these people heard of conspicuous consumption, carbon footprints, environmental enlightenment or obscene opulence? Fortunately for my neighbor I do not have Yancy’s streak of retaliatory invention, but it was fun reading and made me chuckle. Hiaasen has a whole subplot going on the many ways Yancy plagues the developer next door. Then there is the monkey, an animal with a serious attitude issue. The action goes all over the place; from Yancy’s campaign against his next door neighbor in the Florida Keys, to Miami where he romances a comely coroner, to the Bahamas where his path crosses with the monkey. Hiaasen is shocking and outrageously funny. It is summer, time for fun!— Deon Stonehouse
But first-this being Hiaasen country-Yancy must negotiate an obstacle course of wildly unpredictable events with a crew of even more wildly unpredictable characters, including his just-ex lover, a hot-blooded fugitive from Kansas; the twitchy widow of the frozen arm; two avariciously optimistic real-estate speculators; the Bahamian voodoo witch known as the Dragon Queen, whose suitors are blinded unto death by her peculiar charms; Yancy's new true love, a kinky coroner; and the eponymous bad monkey-who just may be one of Carl Hiaasen's greatest characters.
About the Author
"[A] comedic marvel . . . [Hiaasen] hasn't written a novel this funny since Skinny Dip. . . . Beautifully constructed."—Janet Maslin, The New York Times, -
"Bad Monkey boils over with corruption and comeuppance. And yes, there's a monkey."—O, The Oprah Magazine, -