Andrew Yancy - late of the Miami Police and soon-to-be-late of the Monroe County sheriff’s office - has a human arm in his freezer. There’s a logical (Hiaasenian) explanation for that, but not for how and why it parted from its shadowy owner. Yancy thinks the boating-accident/shark-luncheon explanation is full of holes, and if he can prove murder, the sheriff might rescue him from his grisly Health Inspector gig (it’s not called the roach patrol for nothing). 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 with hilarious aplomb earns his place among Carl Hiaasen’s greatest characters.
Here is Hiaasen doing what he does better than anyone else: spinning a tale at once fiercely pointed and wickedly funny in which the greedy, the corrupt, and the degraders of what’s left of pristine Florida - now, of the Bahamas as well - get their comeuppance in mordantly ingenious, diabolically entertaining fashion.
©2013 Carl Hiaasen (P)2013 Random House Audio
Narration was very disappointing
Writing not up to usual standard
Sometimes stumbling over words
Hopefully Arte Johnson will not be used in any future readings
I really enjoyed listening to this book. The characters are well crafted and complex, the situations absurd, the pace rapid and compelling. And the performance by Arte Johnson -- let's just say I went on a search for more books he'd narrated and was disappointed to find that Carl Hiaasen's other novels are not among them.
Crazy but likeable characters, funny situations.
No, haven't but will be!
I wanted to, but couldn't. Perfect for car travel listening.
Summer reading at its best.
The narrator is the worst! As for the story, it lacks some of the vivid and ridiculous characters of previous books by Hiaasen.
Most interesting: the use of the monkey as a thread in the story. Least interesting: the characters seemed a little flat.
No, I would avoid him.
Listen to older Hiaasen novels narrated by George Wilson
Hiassen is waaaaay too funny.
his books are always a romp, bringing up sometimes serious issues with wicked good humor. in this book, we get real estate development and Medicare fraud all wrapped up in the tale of a shark-chomped arm and a mysteriously not-really-grieving widow.
our hero, a cop who was demoted to food inspector for a rather nasty bit of knight-in-shining-armor-ness, desperately wants his detective job back before he dies of starvation: inspecting restaurants has definitely put him off his feed. along comes the aforementioned arm, and he's off on a not legally sanctioned investigation into the death of its former owner.
along the way he does a little civil disobedience vis. his new view-destroying next door neighbor, builder of a monstrosity intended only for a fast sale. i've no idea what kind of twisted mind Hiassen actually has, but i wouldn't want to try to build an ugly house next door to him.
the book is exceptionally paced, with a lot of balls kept masterfully in the air. it does get a little hard to track who's who (at least in the audio version)--there are a lot of characters--but entirely worth the effort.
the choice of narrator in the audio version seems a bit odd--Arte Johnson is a gravelly-voiced fellow, sounding much older than one imagines the protag to be, but he does a respectable job even with the women's voices.
Very entertaining book. Arte Johnson read okay. His accents weren't the best, but he still did a creditable job and did not distract at all from the story.
Carl Hiaasen is consistent as usual. He knocked it out of the park again. He has such a grasp of the Floridian twilight zone mentality. Surely, as an outsider this may seem weird, but as a Floridian...this depiction is the norm. Funny from beginning to end. It certainly keeps your attention, and kudos to narrator Arte Johnson. He is very pleasant to listen to.
The monkey. He brought light humorous moments
Monkey and voodoo lady skirmish
Even monkeys enjoy the keys
Hiassen's colorful characters come to life through the audible medium! I own every book he's written in both book and audio form for this reason.
I listened to Bad Monkey over two days and LOVED it. Hiassen's quirky, hilarious and questionably ethical characters keep the story rolling along at a perfect pace. I wish Skink was in every book he writes but this time I didn't miss him!
The narrator. Unlike most of the other reviewers I thought Arte Johnson's reading of this was almost perfect. It's true he mixed up the regional accents a couple of times but all in all I really enjoyed this telling.
I've never heard him do a book previous to this one.
I normally save books like this (Hiaasen, Rick Reilly, etc) for the car. My wife and I have so dissimilar tastes in books that authors like these are about the only things we can both agree on. In this case I enjoyed the reading so much I burned through it in two days at work. I'm sure I'll be able to hear it again when we are traveling though.
Proud owner of over 1500 downloaded audiobooks (fanatic?, addict? you decide :-)
I was a die-hard Carl Hiaasen fan until “Nature Girl” and “Star Island” both of which were substandard (IMHO). When he took his hiatus to write kid’s books I was disappointed because I couldn’t give up on him completely but as the years passed with no new novels for the adult reader, his star faded in my firmament. I did take note of “Bad Monkey” when it came out but I didn’t rush to download it because I didn’t want to face more disenchantment. Then recently I read a synopsis of his next book (“No Surrender”) which features his iconic character, Skink, and that was the spark that renewed my interest.
I loved “Bad Monkey” and wholeheartedly recommend it. The story is suspenseful, the characters are hilarious - either lovable or despicable but always outrageous - and the plot has plenty of twists and turns. The ending is quite satisfying although there were a few plot points I wasn't clear about - a minor issue which did not detract from the overall pleasure. I've been to the Florida Keys but I'm not very familiar with the climate, flora, fauna or bug life. CH makes this part of the world one of the main characters in his novels. He makes no secret of his love for his home state and his wish to protect it from those who would “pave paradise and put up a parking lot” (thank you, Joni Mitchell).
In the interest of full disclosure, I probably wouldn’t give “Bad Monkey” a full 5 stars except that I want to bring up the average because it is definitely a 4+ star listen/read. I don’t get the complaints about Arte Johnson AT ALL. I think he did a great job but I guess narration really is a matter of taste because there are some narrators I don’t care for who are very popular (George Guidall, Scott Brick, Lorelei King). This is why it’s a good thing Audible includes a sound sample ;-)
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