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Favorite Summer Reads: The Evolution of Bruno Littlemore by Benjamin Hale

For Reading Monday this week, I’m taking part in the Favorite Summer Reads Blogfest organized by Cherie Reich. 
The rules are simple. 

Cherie says. “All you have to do is post on your blog between August 24-27 and tell us what is your favorite summer read. Please post a picture of a book’s cover art, a description of the book and why it is your favorite summer read. Then we can hop around and find great books.”

It is hard to choose from the books I’ve read in the past few months, but if I had to absolutely choose one, it would be one I have not talked about so far: The Evolution of Bruno Littlemore.

This is not a small book, and with my current attention span, it is a miracle I managed to finish something this big. What kept me hooked was the voice, the chimpanzee Bruno’s voice, that is.

To give you an idea of what I’m talking about, here is an excerpt from a description in the 
Publisher’s Weekly:

An enlightened chimp goes on the wildest adventure since Every Which Way but Loose in Hale’s mischievous debut. Bruno Littlemore, the narrator chimp, eventually lands in a research lab at the University of Chicago, where he falls in love with Dr. Lydia Littlemore, who, shortly after hearing Bruno speak his name, takes him first to her apartment (sex is had, much later) and later to the quietude of a Colorado ranch owned by a couple of odd animal rights advocates. It is in this environment that Bruno becomes a fully articulate and artistic being, but the idyll does not last.

I don’t want to give out spoilers, and I recommend you pick up the book if you want to know more. There is a mixture of chills and reassurance in Bruno’s sardonic humor which I love. He makes us question what it means to be a human as only a creature that believes itself to be human can, and for that alone this book is worth a read.

 And while your arms might ache with the weight of the book while reading this book on the beach, I have a feeling your mind would thank you.

Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her literary crime thriller series, the Blue Mumbai, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency. Both The Blue Bar and The Blue Monsoon were published in 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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  • Madeleine says:

    This reminds me of the film I recently saw Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Sounds intriguing.

  • Oh my goodness. What a bizarre premise!

  • Jaye Viner says:

    I picked up this book at BnN when it first came out because its an Iowa author, and then lost interest after the second page. Might have to give it another chance.

  • Cherie Reich says:

    I hadn't heard of this book before. I don't think I've read one from a chimpanzee's pov either. It sounds good, though. I'll have to keep it in mind–and if it is that heavy to hold, maybe buy it on Kindle. 🙂

  • Damyanti says:

    Rosalind, it definitely is worth the read !

  • A chimp narrator… that's different. It sounds worth a try though.

  • Damyanti says:

    Deborah…hello, hello 🙂 Thanks for the kind words, and adding you to my sidebar!

  • Sounds great. Hello, fellow campaigner. Your blog is awfully pretty and full of good things, yum yum.

  • Damyanti says:

    Angelina…those are all I read 🙂

    Christine, that this book made me laugh was a definite plus point.

    Michael, am SO flattered :).

    The book will be available on Barnes and Noble next week, via Will that help with downloading on Nook?

    Thanks for your comment, Allmyposts, and I believe we've met before 🙂

  • AllMyPosts says:

    The Evolution of Bruno Littlemore seems good!!

    Should try out!! I guess!!

    I am from writers platform building campaign!!

    with warm regards
    Another Author

  • Hmmm. I don't think I've ever read a book with a chimpanzee in it. Thanks for the recommend, but before I read this book, I shall be reading yours. It's on my goodreads. I should be able to get it done by the end of October at my present pace 🙂

    Out of curiosity, is there a reason you don't have it available on Nook? I own both a Nook and an iPad and use the Kindle application, but as the owner of a Nook…I think Nook books are great.

  • Oh, it sounds interesting. I don't mind weighty books especially if they can make me laugh.

  • Sounds delightful. I can't remember the last time I read an adult book. Yikes!