We’ll Always Have Parrots is by far the silliest of Donna Andrews’s bird-themed books, the fifth in the series. Meg Langslow has joined her actor boyfriend, Michael, at a fan convention for Porfiria, Queen of the Jungle, a TV show based upon a comic book from the 1970s.
The book opens first thing in the morning on the first day of the convention as Michael is doing his vocal exercises in the bathroom, waking up Meg. When she looks up, Meg sees Michael in the bedroom with her! Upon investigation, they discover an African gray parrot in the bathroom, imitating Michael’s voice. But when Meg calls the front desk to complain, she is brushed off with the message that the hotel is focusing on helping those with multiple birds first. Assuming they don’t believe her, Meg learns otherwise when the fans volunteering for the convention show up to escort Michael to his first panel, complete with umbrellas to protect Michael from the droppings of the hundreds of parrots inhabiting the halls. It seems that the monkeys brought in to create ambiance for the convention managed to open their own cages and then the cages of the parrots, leaving the hotel a more realistic jungle than anyone had planned.
The show centers around a jungle queen named Porfiria, played by an aging wannabe starlet dubbed the QB by everyone who knows her. They tell her that QB stands for “Queen Bee,” but they all privately have another word for the B, a word that suits her well when fans try to get her for her first panel, only for her to yell, “Go away! I want my rest! Go away!” This merely adds a host of new people to her list of enemies, which also consists of every single member connected to the TV program. Add in Meg and her mother, who are furious at the bad way the QB treated Meg’s 10-year-old nephew at a signing event.
When the QB refuses to leave her room later, Meg takes matters into her own hands by breaking into the room, only to discover the murdered body of the QB and a terrified parrot yelling in the QB’S voice to go away. It also tells Meg the QB’s last words, giving her something to investigate, along with a scrap of a comic strip clutched in the QB’s hands.
This book is full of wild romps with monkeys, parrots, and even a tiger! There are sword fights and crazy shenanigans of fans and Meg’s family.
This is the second book in this series available in audio format, and Bernadette Dunne does a great job. I have now listened to the book several times and still laugh throughout the whole thing.
This book is a fun adventure that is a really intriguing mystery while also being so bizarre at times that you can’t help but laugh. I highly recommend the book to anyone, but people who love shows like Porfiria and fan conventions are likely to enjoy it more. We’ll Always Have Parrots will be especially likely to delight FangirlNation’s fans! I give this strange and silly book 5 stars!
We’ll Always Have Parrots (Meg Langslow Mysteries) is available now. To order from Amazon, click the link in the title. And remember, your local library might have it.