The Tower, The Zoo, and The Tortoise - review & Winners

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Book Description: ABOUT THIS BOOK

Brimming with charm and whimsy, this exquisite novel set in the Tower of London has the transportive qualities and delightful magic of the contemporary classics Chocolat and Amélie.

Balthazar Jones has lived in the Tower of London with his loving wife, Hebe, and his 120-year-old pet tortoise for the past eight years. That’s right, he is a Beefeater (they really do live there). It’s no easy job living and working in the tourist attraction in present-day London.

Among the eccentric characters who call the Tower’s maze of ancient buildings and spiral staircases home are the Tower’s Rack & Ruin barmaid, Ruby Dore, who just found out she’s pregnant; portly Valerie Jennings, who is falling for ticket inspector Arthur Catnip; the lifelong bachelor Reverend Septimus Drew, who secretly pens a series of principled erot­ica; and the philandering Ravenmaster, aiming to avenge the death of one of his insufferable ravens.

When Balthazar is tasked with setting up an elaborate menagerie within the Tower walls to house the many exotic animals gifted to the Queen, life at the Tower gets all the more interest­ing. Penguins escape, giraffes are stolen, and the Komodo dragon sends innocent people running for their lives. Balthazar is in charge and things are not exactly running smoothly. Then Hebe decides to leave him and his beloved tortoise “runs” away.

My Take: This was a most charming and delightful book! It reminded me of the first time I read The Chronicles of Narnia. It had childlike wonder about it. I highly recommend it!



2 Responses to “The Tower, The Zoo, and The Tortoise - review & Winners”
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Wasn't this fun? I enjoyed all of the quirky characters as well as the animals. I want to look for the author's first book.

This book was definitely a charmer. I just reviewed it too and highly recommended it.

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