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The Anteater of Death: A Gunn Zoo Mystery Hardcover – Nov 15 2008

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 261 pages
  • Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press (Nov. 15 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590585607
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590585603
  • Product Dimensions: 2.3 x 14.6 x 21.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 408 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,695,754 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 42 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
I have fallen in love with an Anteater! Dec 10 2008
By M. C. Carter - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Buy or borrow this book. Do not steal this book....that would make Lucy mad and apparently that's one thing you never want to do....go head to head or toe to talon with an enraged anteater.

I have long been a fan of the author's other series but was blown away by this book. Lucy and her keeper Teddy are fresh and wonderful, the zoo and the marina and the castle are superb locations. I thought I pegged the killer early (and I turned out to be right) but that didn't take away from the sheer joy of the book. There is a nice cast of slightly 'different' supporting characters but the craziness is well contained and only adds to the joy...(if you are a reader of the Meg Langslow books by Donna Andrews, the crazy supporting cast is very similar.) And there's a nice love story and a hunky ex boyfriend now the sheriff and an on-the lam father and an entire zoo full of friends...both animal and human.

Buy this book borrow this book, read this book and love this book!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
wouldn't call it a cozy . . . . Jan. 3 2013
By Larkin - Published on
Format: Paperback
The author's writing style was good; her dialogue was excellent, and her characters were well drawn. I saw no spelling/grammar errors, etc. She was thorough in her research of zoo activity, as well. I did think there was a surfeit of characters, which detracted from my enjoyment of the book. Warning: there may be spoilers ahead.

I would not call this book a cozy, but that's just my subjective definition of one. I'd never thought about it before, but I guess I've decided that a bunch of little factors, added together, decrease a book's "coziness". For starters, there is more than one description of someone vomiting. I can only tolerate one per cozy, thank you very much! :) Also, in my definition of a cozy, there is less foul language than this book had, and there isn't as much emphasis on romance (past or present). As a matter of fact, I would call this book 1/3 documentary (info on the zoo animals, etc.), 1/3 romance novel, and 1/3 who-dunnit.

One thing I disliked was that the author has her protagonist whine about her "lost love" at age 15. She blames her parents for separating them, and spends way too much time wondering if she would've escaped years of emotional trauma if she'd been allowed to stay with her teen crush. As a parent, I wouldn't have been happy about my 15-year old sleeping with a 17-year old, not to mention when he turned 18 and she was still a minor. What the parents did was drastic, but we never get to hear what steps they may have taken first to dissuade her from the possible consequences of teen pregnancy, etc. It just bothers me that this 30-year old woman is still thinking like a lust-driven 15-year old, instead of realizing that her parents weren't so "evil" for doing this. The author gives Teddy some good character traits, but for me, they were overshadowed by this facet of the story.

I enjoyed the zoo information, and (if I were planning on reading another in this series) I would want more information about different animals. Before this book, I knew almost nothing about anteaters. I did enjoy the scenes with Lucy/Teddy interaction.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Noble Animals and Savage Humans Dec 1 2008
By Steven Rigolosi - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Zookeeper Teddy Bentley is caught between worlds. The divorced daughter of a money-hungry forever-dieting society vixen, she prefers living on her rickety houseboat to cohabiting with Caro (whom she's not allowed to call "Mother") in the unspeakably expensive neighborhood of their swanky California coastal home. Having been burned too many times--most recently by a cheating ex-husband--Teddy prefers the company of her animal charges at the privately owned Gunn Zoo, as well as her own misfit pets (DJ Bonz the three-legged dog, and Miss Priss the one-eyed cat).

Webb has crafted an intricate mystery that goes beyond the usual whodunnit to touch on social stratification (a wealthy snob is trying to have liveaboarders at the marina evicted because their boats aren't upscale enough), social climbing and the problems of "old money," and the difficulty of learning to trust when everyone around you seems greedy, conniving, and/or homicidal.

I thoroughly enjoyed The Anteater of Death, and was (pleasantly) surprised to find that the book has two sources of suspense: not only the murders that Teddy sets out to investigate, but also the behavior of zoo animals. You spectate tensely and jaw-clenchingly as a gentle giraffe gives birth (Will the baby survive the six-foot drop?), as a child falls into the bear pit, as a mated pair of wolves have a bloody lovers' quarrel, and even as Teddy herself has a shaky encounter with one of her beloved animals.

I love a mystery that makes you think, and The Anteater of Death makes you speculate on the similarities and differences between humans and zoo animals, as we watch the worst-behaved of the animals mirror the interactions of the venal humans around them, and the best-behaved of the animals relentlessly put human beings to shame. An added bonus is the sleaziest, creepiest, most disgustingly sexist villain I've read in a while, who provides suitable fodder for the reader's bile as well as some terrific comic moments. Here's hoping Teddy will be back for more.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The Zoo Parts Were Good-- Kindle Format Review Dec 13 2012
By Sires - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A body is found in the enclosure of the Giant Anteater at the Gunn Zoo following a fund raiser. It turns out to be husband of one of the Gunn heirs and beneficiaries of the Gunn trust.

Teddy Bentley,currently a zookeeper, was part of the same social circle by birth, but not financially these days.Her father embezzled millions from the firm he worked for and took off for foreign parts to run other con jobs. Her husband was caught cheating on her resulting in a divorce. Her ex-beauty queen mother took up a career of marriage to rich men after her first husband's desertion.

It's no wonder Teddy prefers the animals she cares for and her fellow zoo keepers to the human population. But in order to help Lucy the anteater and Zorah, a fellow employee arrested for the murder she has to investigate the death.

The zoo bits were good and interesting. The author, like Teddy, seems to prefer animals to humans and her characterization of the animals and the interaction with them is entertaining. The human characters are less so. I kept making notes on my kindle as I kept being amazed by the senseless actions of the humans.

The romance was banal though and anyone as surrounded by dysfunctional relationships as Teddy should think a little harder before entering into the one she does. I ending up thinking she would be smart to keep the animals and dump the boyfriend.

Previously published in paper. The book is well edited when it comes to grammar and spelling. Poisoned Pen Press does its usual fine job with Kindle formatting.

While I'm a bit tepid about this book I'm willing to give The Koala of Death-- the second in the series-- a try.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Loved It! Jan. 14 2013
By Gayle - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a new series for me. I saw the 3rd book (The Llama of Death) in the Coming Soon category on Audible, liked the description and downloaded this - the first book of the series - on Audible & for my Kindle. It's wonderful! I've already downloaded book 2 (The Koala of Death) and can't wait to read more about Teddy and her friends at the Gunn Zoo! This is a wholesome story with a very talented narrator too! You owe it to yourself to give it a try.

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