Gruen's latest book, Ape House, was one I was intrigued by from the start. As a child I had read a book by Norma Klein, Honey of a Chimp, where a family adopts a chimp, raising it as a child in their family. I read and re-read that book numerous times, wishing for this for my family. Any novel about apes seems to attract my attention, even in adulthood.
Ape House is a fictional story about Isabel Duncan, researcher, who is working in at a university research center when the building is bombed, critically injuring her. While she is recovering from her injuries, the apes - which are the closest thing to a family that she has- are sold to be the stars of a reality television show. Her fiancee, Peter, proves to be a disappointing match and their relationship ends as well. The one person Isabel feels some bond with is a reporter, John Thigpen, who has recently visited her at the lab. John's marriage and professional problems provide an entertaining subplot. Although this story didn't go where I anticipated, Gruen's latest work is one that I read quickly, happily devouring it.
While reviews are mixed on this one, Ape House gets a thumbs up from me.