144g 07/47 The Monkey Suit

Chuck Welch
July 4, 2007 - 1947 / Bantam 133-144 / larkin / novel / pulp / rosmond / swenson

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Why are people being murdered for a rented, moth-eaten ape costume? Doc and his crew battle to unmask the deadly mystery — and to keep a billion-dollar scientific breakthrough out of the hands of gangland gorillas.

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  1. Bryan Bullock says:

    Kind of a silly one. The whole point of the mcguffin, the monkey suit of the title, is amusing, since its all a big… well, I won’t give it away. Suffice to say, I’m a little surprised Doc didn’t bust some heads after this one. Another one told in first person, and the narrator is REALLY annoying.

  2. Thomas Fortenberry says:

    This book is another of the “first-person” experiments that were gathered together in Omnibus #5. However, unlike the common-man-and-physical narrator of _No Light to Die By_ the prtotagonist here, Sammy Wales, is a remarkably unlikeable character. He is a repellant, whiny, anti-action, snob of a human. One must suppose that he is a direct opposite of the No Light narrator on purpose, and the fact that he is so fully aggravating shows that Dent was once again exploring his literary gifts seeing how far and how differently he could report a Doc Savage tale.

    The story is not interesting but there are a few moments of interest when the narrator dismisses or fails to grasp what Doc is doing. In fact at times he thinks Doc is a failure accomplishing nothing, only to be proven wrong when it comes to light Doc has been active behind the scenes. Also some of the descriptions of Monk and Doc, their methods, and their devices — told from this outside and disdainful view — are kind of cool. Especially since we are the insiders on this story and can have a laugh at Sammy’s expense.

    At best we can say this is an alternate-styled Doc, an experiment in fiction. But _No Light_ was a better version of this experiment. It is not, by any means, of much value as a Doc adventure.

  3. Thomas Fortenberry says:

    A note of correction. I mistakenly switched the names of the two narrators as I was writing this review. The narrator of this book, who is so completely annoying, is Henry A. E. Jones. The narrator of _No Light to Die By_ is Sammy Wales. You might notice that after I mentioned _No Light_ in this review I kept saying Sammy when I meant Henry.

    That is what happens when you do a double review and don’t pay attention. Sorry about that.

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