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Tucker's Monster

From Publishers Weekly

A rip-roaring portrait of a man with the money, recklessness, and tenacity to pursue his single-minded goal of discovering a live dinosaur in the year 1903 has young, mild-mannered scientist Gerard Whitney answering a job ad only to find himself working for wealthy eccentric Harold B. Tucker on his Oklahoma ranch. Most days, Whitney is free to work on his scientific classifications, but when Tucker receives reports of hauntings, monster sightings, or other unexplained activity, Whitney must accompany him on his investigations. Sparing no expense, Tucker, his helpers, and his vast collection of firearms travel to Louisiana, Vermont, and ultimately to Venezuela, and neither Whitney nor Jenny, the Cherokee woman who is Tucker's wife and dinosaur-hunting partner, can persuade him out of threatening and bullying locals and even devastating ecosystems in pursuit of his impossible quarry. That both Tucker's companions and the novel's readers are inclined to forgive the manipulative, volatile dinosaur hunter is a testament to the author's character-building. For all his gruffness and his power, Tucker is a man compelled by a tragically unrealizeable dream, and the pathos of his situation is clear. Tense action scenes, including a particularly memorable haunted house, keep the pace moving at a brisk clip. A heartfelt and well-realized tall tale.’s+monster&qid=1625068682&sr=8-1


Fraidy Cats


Elements of Frankenstein mythology from Mary Shelley to Hollywood are delightfully jumbled together in a fast paced comic adventure set in 19th century Germany. Wily Rolf and roly-poly Hermann are alley cats with a pretty good life. Using cunning and stealth they easily purloin food from townsfolk and animals alike. But a routine stop at a local mansion, with intent to steal treats from the owners' pampered dog, runs afoul of two burglars, with intent to steal the owners' jewels. In the chaos, Hermann inadvertently gobbles a diamond ring. Now the cats are hotly pursued by the murderous thieves and their equally murderous hound (from whom, to be honest, Rolf and Hermann once stole food). They can't hide forever, and they fear wolves in the surrounding forest, so they try to escape on a sailing ship. But it's guarded by an army of fearsome bilge rats. To get aboard, much to their humiliation, they must strike a bargain with the pack rat leader, promising to bring him a single item to add to his vast collection of junk. The item is a pocket watch -- worn by Dr. Frankenstein.


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