By Francine Prose
Harper (285 pages, $26.99)
“Mister Monkey” is not only the title of Prose’s 18th novel (among her works: “Household Saints,” “A Changed Man,” “Blue Angel” and most recently “Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932”), it’s also the name of the family-friendly musical at its center. Based on a popular children’s novel about a monkey adopted from Africa by a New York family, “Mister Monkey: The Musical” is in its “umpteen-hundredth” revival off-off-off-off Broadway, in a weary “soon-to-be-replaced-by-condos theater beneath the High Line.”
Nearly everyone involved with the production -- one so low-rent that the cast provides most of their own costumes -- is ready for it to end.
Each chapter is told from the point of view of a different character, giving the impression of a spotlight that briefly illuminates one person -- one monologue, one life -- before moving on.
The Seattle Times