Top positive review
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A High Quality Continuation Of A High Quality Series
on 2 June 2005
As the third book in this series, I have to say that I feel that this is the best. I know that this is out of line with many readers who feel that the same joke is being stretched too far, but my reasons are as follows;
1) I do not believe that the same joke is being stretched at all. Clearly the first novel had the most out and out laughs, as the comedy of setting noir style writing in Aberystwyth was being established, and so the comedic potential for the town itself was exploited to the full. In the second book (Tango) and now this, that potential has been exploited and the reader is invited to accept it as an alternative reality and see the town as a character in its own right, much the same as LA became a valid character in the Chandler novels.
2) The character development is excellent, with relationships deepening, and histories being revealed. Yes, you should read the books in order to make sense of it all, but that simply suggests a connected series rather than a fundemental flaw. I personally feel that the books have become less out and out funny, but more black in their humour, and more personal in their storytelling.
The two reasons above are for for me strong points, and I enjoy the fact that the author treats his readership as adults who can remember small details from previous books and builds on them. The books are very cohesive and as the laughs become blacker the series becomes more readable for me. It could be compared to something like 'The League Of Gentlemen' where once the settings themselves have been mined for comedy, the characters take over and the viewer becomes more involved.
It has to be said that the plotlines of the books are always entertaining, and in this book, I thought, hightly original. I thought the monkey plotline was genius.