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The Koala of Death (Gunn Zoo Series) Paperback – August 1, 2010


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Frequently Bought Together

The Koala of Death (Gunn Zoo Series) + The Llama of Death: A Gunn Zoo Mystery (Gunn Zoo Series) + The Anteater of Death: A Gunn Zoo Mystery (Gunn Zoo Series)
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Product Details

  • Series: Gunn Zoo Series
  • Paperback: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press (August 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590587588
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590587584
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.7 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #889,981 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Zookeeper Theodora “Teddy” Bentley is looking for the sea otter that has been frequenting the marina where her houseboat is docked when she finds the body of a colleague, Koala Kate, zookeeper and television personality, floating in the water. Kate was strangled before being dumped in the water and the suspects are many: Outback Bill, her former boyfriend; Robin Chase, the big-cat keeper who has a grudge against Teddy; several other “liveaborders” at the harbor; an animal psychic; and even Teddy's ex-beauty-queen mother. When Teddy is ordered by her boss at the zoo to take over Kate's TV show, she finds herself thrown into the murder investigation and must solve the crime to avoid becoming the next victim. Teddy's second adventure will appeal to animal lovers who enjoy a bit of social satire with their mystery. Pair this series with Ann Littlewood's Iris Oakley novels, also starring a zookeeper. --Barbara Bibel --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

 

 

"Teddy’s second adventure will appeal to animal lovers who enjoy a bit of social satire with their mystery."  -- Booklist

 

"Teddy's second case (The Anteater of Death, 2008) showcases an engaging array of quirky characters, human and animal."  -- Kirkus Reviews

 

"From mucking out the cages to carrying a lemur with a loose sphincter onto a TV set, Teddy's adventures will appeal to fans of animal-themed cozies." -- Library Journal

 

“Webb warmly evokes the unconventional worlds of zoo and marina. Readers don't even have to be animal lovers to enjoy watching, say, a pushy television host get her comeuppance from a mischievous lemur.”      — Publishers Weekly


More About the Author

Former journalist Betty Webb is a prize-winning mystery novelist whose books are based on true crimes, including human rights abuses. Publishers Weekly called her novels "mysteries with a social conscience." She lives in Arizona, where her Lena Jones mysteries are set, and teaches writing at Arizona State University.

Customer Reviews

This is the second book I've read in the series and I've enjoyed both.
bothellbuyer
This is a wonderful book for those of us who like a sleuthing but do not want so much gore that we can not sleep at night.
Sunny10
A fun, light, read that does not sacrifice the mystery or plot for fun.
Anne Bauer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Menagerie on September 11, 2010
Format: Paperback
This is the first of Betty Webb's books that I have read, but I am sure it will not be the last. Teddy and the motley group at the Gunn Zoo are an interesting, diverse group of characters that keep the story moving along. Teddy is an independent, fiesty woman who keeps finding dead people and getting pulled into the mysteries surrounding their murders.

Caro, as Teddy's socialite, blue-blooded mother, is a good foil for down-to-earth Teddy and their clashes make for good fun. Astor Edwina, Caro's lifetime foe, complicates matters by alway one-upping Caro and by using Teddy as her own little pawn at the zoo.

The only character here that disappoints is Joe, Teddy's boyfriend. He is the local sheriff and par for the course with so many cozies, he is rabid about his girlfriend not getting involved in HIS job. Joe refuses to acknowledge Teddy's knack for finding out whodunnit and harps about her staying safe and out of his way. Despite the fact that everyone knows he and Teddy are dating, he always speaks her to her with uber formality during an investigation and is harsh and dismissive in his official dealings with her. It's very formulaic and I hope that Webb has Joe do some significant changing in the next book.

For anyone who loves animals and mysteries, this is a book sure to delight. I look forward to the next book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By D. Williams VINE VOICE on December 15, 2011
Format: Paperback
For Theodora ("Teddy") Bentley, life is a zoo - literally and figuratively. She works at the Gunn Zoo, which would be excitement aplenty for most people, with the various animals she is given charge of. She also has some unusual colleagues. The big-cat keeper, Robin Chase, dislikes Teddy. The marsupial keeper, Outback Bill, has such a thick Australian accent that an average American can't understand him, even if they do get past his potty mouth. Koala Kate is perhaps the most level-headed of Teddy's colleagues.

To add to the insanity from the zoo-keeping work, Teddy also has problems with her family. Her mother Caro is an aging, many-times-married , former beauty queen who wants Teddy married to a rich man and away from a job she thinks is beneath Teddy. (But does she bother to see that Teddy loves her job and is happy with her life?) Teddy's father is on the lam for embezzlement.

One of the things that Caro especially despises about Teddy's life (and Teddy likes) is the fact that Teddy lives on a houseboat when she's not on duty at the zoo. The people who live in the houseboats are called "liveaboarders", and after a party among the liveaboarders, Koala Kate, Teddy's neighbor, is found dead. At first, the police (aka Teddy's boyfriend Joe, the local sheriff) believe the death to be accidental but soon see that it wasn't. So who did it? Outback Bill comes under suspicion, as do Robin, Caro and others.

As a fun subplot to the murder mystery, readers also see that Teddy is selected (more like ordered!) to take over the morning TV spot that was Koala Kate's. There's an old saying in film and TV: never work with animals or children. That is so true in this case; even the animals that are typically the sweetest at the zoo create mayhem at the TV studio.

Those who like animals and not-too-dark mysteries will love this fun romp of a novel.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sunny10 on August 6, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was a good mysterey and a fun read. This is a wonderful book for those of us who like a sleuthing but do not want so much gore that we can not sleep at night. The detective zookeeper heroine is someone I really identify with, she is real from her job to her prying uppity mother, from her loyalty to her boyfriend to her living on a boat. The story revolves around a small harbor village and its nearby zoo. This is also a good read for animal lovers as the book moves through the animal habitats of the world at the zoo. The author has a gift for giving animals a voice yet not humanizing them like so many others do, her imagination of the animal thoughts and actions show how familar she is with these animals. She even weaves the story so the koala can help catch the murderer. The story will hold your attention, have you listing your suspects, have you giggling at situations like bowling for rhinos, and have you holding your breath with suspense. I read the first in this series too, the Anteater of Death, and I can hardly wait for the next installment in the series!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Laura de Leon on August 3, 2010
Format: Paperback
What I really like about this book is (in spite of multiple dead bodies) how upbeat it was. The koala was cuddly, the baby anteater was cute, Teddy's mother's crazy antics were motivated by affection.

This was the second book in the series, but this didn't cause any problems for me. There were no plot issues, I was able to connect with the characters without a problem. I do know how the first book ended, but I can live with that.

If I think about it, the book is fairly traditional cozy. The characters and setting are fresh enough to make it work. I really enjoyed this one, and am looking forward to reading more.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By bookfanatic1979 on December 23, 2013
Format: Paperback
I’ve decided to read these books for the characters and the human-animal interactions instead of the mystery. This time around it was so completely out of left field that I just gave up trying to figure it out. Either I don’t pay close enough attention, or there weren’t nearly enough clues to make it plausible.
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