April 12, 2012

Belly Up - by Stuart Gibbs

If I told you this was a book about a grumpy hippo who liked to shoot his poop at zoo guests, would you still read it?  That's only a small part of the story, but it definitely held my interest.  It's also the story of mysterious animal deaths, an amazing zoo, a famous teenage girl, a nasty park security guard, the smell of dead hippo guts, parents who stick up for their son, an escaped deadly black snake, and a really, really rich guy.   Yes, it's an interesting story.

This book was very well-written, and held my interest throughout.  It is a bit funny, kind of like a Carl Hiaasen book (but without any of the swearing).  It's the story of a boy whose parents work at a top-of-the-line Texas zoo, and who is the only kid who has access to all the "behind the scenes" areas.  When he discovers that the death of a famous hippo may not be as innocent as it seems, he is drawn into an investigation that could cost him his life.

Read this if you love animals, but are not too squeamish about a little death and guts.  Also, if you love fast-paced realistic adventures with quirky characters.

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