Charles's Reviews > Catchee Monkey

Catchee Monkey by Sean  Cameron
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Feb 01, 2015

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bookshelves: first-reads, humor, mystery, stat_3, reviewed

First Reads Review - Catchee Monkey by Sean Cameron

There is something undeniable cute about this book. Or maybe...charming. The central idea is that there are two men, Rex and Eddie, who are friends but who are, well, losers. They suck at everything they do and can't even keep jobs as mall security. They've been fired from every job they've ever had and now they're looking at their prospects and they are...well, not good. Rex is the "wild card" of the pair, an ADD-style "hero" who sort of bounces off the walls and freezes under pressure. There is the sense that there is something actually wrong with him, mentally, though he does try to be good, to do good. Eddie, on the other hand, is the one who wants a normal life and feels Rex is the element that draws him into trouble. And yet he needs Rex to keep him from being a complete shut in. The two work well with each other.

The book does move pretty well, too, in a sort of accidental way. The pair stumble across a case when they open up a detective agency and all hell sort of breaks loose from there because while they are complete idiots when it comes to detecting, they do have a sort of doggedness and a luck that places them at just the right place at just the wrong time. And that might be a little harsh. They do stumble their way through a mystery and do a pretty good job of it, though along the way they do about everything wrong that they can, and with each incident Eddie watches his savings disappear. I did like the running tally of money as they lost it. It was rather cleverly done.

The plot, too, is rather tight, but in these types of books everything hinges on the fact that the main characters don't actually have much to do with their success. They trip at just the right time, or just so happen to ask a question that gets someone to open up or let something slip. It's a rather fun story, but one that is entirely dependent on these sorts of serendipitous moments. They do suffer more often than they succeed, but the story walks a fine line between humorous and too ridiculous. In the end I think that it works for what it is, and it has a rather interesting set of main characters. Not that I, personally, really liked Rex and Eddie, but they're entertaining enough. I find myself a little burned out on the character type after a number of other projects that felt similar, but that's no fault of this book.

Ultimately, the book is cute and rather fun as long as you're willing to buy into it. For those not quite as eager to suspend disbelief, it's still got enough cute moments and sight gags to make the story move along, and the prose is well constructed. It's not out to change the world, but more than likely it's good for a smile and few laughs. A 6.5/10 for me.
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Reading Progress

February 1, 2015 – Shelved
February 1, 2015 – Shelved as: to-read
February 1, 2015 – Shelved as: first-reads
November 26, 2015 – Started Reading
November 26, 2015 – Shelved as: humor
November 26, 2015 – Shelved as: mystery
November 26, 2015 – Shelved as: stat_3
November 26, 2015 –
page 189
100.0% "Rather fun, rather light. A nice read."
November 26, 2015 – Finished Reading
November 30, 2015 – Shelved as: reviewed

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