Here's the part of the story of King Kong that you know: Kong is captured on Skull Island and taken away by Carl Denam and his crew. Kong arrives in New York and havoc ensues. What you don't know, since it's in neither the movie or the book about Kong, is anything about the journey from one place to the other. Now you can find out, since that's what Will Murray's new novel is all about.
Consider the problems. How are you going to feed Kong? How are you going to keep him from tearing your ship apart? What about body waste? Murray has thought about all these things and more. For example, the shortest way to New York would be through the Suez Canal, but what are you going to tell the customs inspectors if they ask if you have anything to declare? "Oh, nothing at all. Just the giant ape down there in the cargo hold." So the canal is out, and the ship winds up docking for supplies in Kenya. Which is where Kong escapes. Into Tarzan territory.
We all know there can be only one Lord of the Jungle, so who's it gonna be, Kong or Tarzan? Have a look at the cover up there on the left for one of the great confrontations from the book. We all know that Kong winds up in New York, but how does the confrontation end? I'm not telling.
There's lots more in the novel than a short review can reveal, and Murray's ideas about how Kong would adapt to Africa, a very different environment from that of Skull Island, are among them. You'll just have to read the book for yourself to find out what they are.
Carl Denham's a great character, determined to get his way come hell or high water or Lords of the Jungle. This is another thrilling adventure in the grand pulp style from Murray, great reading for a cold winter's day or for any other day of the year.