Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Koala of Death by Betty Webb


If you heard a bump on the side of your houseboat and went out to feed the seal that visits you and found a dead body it'd be quite a shock, wouldn't it? Especially if you recognized her face...

I downloaded this book from Net Galley. It's published by Poisoned Pen Press and is coming out this month in hardcover, trade paperback and large print editions.

I picked this book for a number of reasons: 1) I love living on a houseboat. Spent a weekend on one and it was great. 2) It's set at the zoo and you learn a lot about the animals. 3) The main character has a mother trying to marry her off to a rich man. All those subjects appealed to me!

Teddy recognizes the dead woman as Koala Kate and can't imagine how she drowned. Then she finds that she was dead when she went in the water.

Teddy's boyfriend, Joe, who is the Sheriff, won't tell her anything about the case. But since she works with all the suspects, she has plenty of folks to watch. And let's not forget they are one worker short at the zoo and people are being shifted around to fill the gaps.

This book has plots, subplots, and sidebars. Everyone has different motives for their action, some characters are tied together by their past, and not everyone is operating within the law. Teddy's own father is on the run for embezzlement. Teddy's mother has been married five times. There's no lack of potential suspects.

I enjoyed the frolicking ride through the zoo, Teddy's time on television with the animals, and trying to determine just who the guilty party is. This book reminded me a bit of the movie "Fierce Creatures". Zany characters and cute zoo animals made that movie fun to watch. This book is also fun to read.

Pick up a copy at your local bookstore and have a few laughs and see if you spot the killer. I didn't until end...

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