Dog On It - Chet and Bernie, Bk 1 Author:Spencer Quinn Meet Chet, the wise and lovable canine narrator of Dog on It, who works alongside Bernie, a down-on-his-luck private investigator. Chet might have flunked out of police school ("I'd been the best leaper in K-9 class, which had led to all the trouble in a way I couldn't remember exactly, although blood was involved"), but... more » he's a detective through and through.
In this, their first adventure, Chet and Bernie investigate the disappearance of Madison, a teenage girl who may or may not have been kidnapped, but who has definitely gotten mixed up with some very unsavory characters. A well-behaved, gifted student, she didn't arrive home after school and her divorced mother is frantic. Bernie is quick to take the case -- something about a cash flow problem that Chet's not all that clear about -- and he's relieved, if vaguely suspicious, when Madison turns up unharmed with a story that doesn't add up. But when she disappears for a second time in a week, Bernie and Chet aren't taking any chances; they launch a full-blown investigation. Without a ransom demand, they're not convinced it's a kidnapping, but they are sure of one thing: something smells funny.
Their search for clues takes them into the desert to biker bars and other exotic locals, with Chet's highly trained nose leading the way. Both Chet and Bernie bring their own special skills to the hunt, one that puts each of them in peril. But even as the bad guys try to turn the tables, this duo is nothing if not resourceful, and the result is an uncommonly satisfying adventure.
With his doggy ways and his endearingly hard-boiled voice, Chet is full of heart and occasionally prone to mischief. He is intensely loyal to Bernie, who, though distracted by issues that Chet has difficulty understanding -- like divorce, child custody, and other peculiar human concerns -- is enormously likable himself, in his flawed, all-too-human way.« less
I loved this book! Spencer Quinn is the pseudnym of author Peter Abrahams who just won the 2010 Edgar award for Best YA Mystery with his book "Reality Check". So while this is the first book in a new series, it's not a debut book for this writer.
Chet is the narrator of the mystery. He's a Belgian Shepard who almost passed K-9 school. He has one black ear and one white ear, and keen nose and undying loyalty for his human partner Bernie. Quinn captured the essense of what a dog's thought process might be. The narration from Chet's perspestive had me chuckling throuhgout most of the book. There are some parts of high drama where you really could feel the frustration that a dog might feel based on the outward signs of anxiety a keen observer of dogs will have seen in similar situations.
I had the mystery figured out pretty quickly, but solving the mystery wasn't really the point of the book. Seeing how Chet filtered the events, and worked to solve the mystery were the fascinating parts. I've already checked the second book "Thereby Hangs a Tail" and can't wait to see what Chet and Bernie's next adventure is.
Detective stories these days tend to be more about the gimmick tan the mystery. Colorful detectives have run the gamut from Monks and Priests to Antique Dealers and New Jersey Bounty Hunters. The mystery itself is always good to have, but it is no fun solving it if the Private Investigator isn't entertaining on the way.
Spencer Quinn has introduced an original and captivating twist into the Detective novel genre with the first of the Chet and Bernie mystery series. Bernie is a down-on-his-luck Private Investigator, and Chet is his lovable and faithful canine sidekick. It might seem strange that the detective's dog should get top billing, but this is because the entire story is told from Chet's point of view.
This is a little bit different. James Qwilleran might have solved countless crimes with his Siamese cats Koko and Yum Yum, but neither feline has ever bothered to narrate a story for their master. With a narrative device like this, there is a risk of being too campy or silly. Yet Quinn dodges both dangers and delivers a furry Watson that actually manages not to stray too far from believability.
This is mainly due to Chet. It's hard not to like Chet, and his observations on human events and actions manage to be quite humorous, endearing, an occasionally insightful. This might leave his owner Bernie in the backseat in several parts of the story, but the book never suffers from it.
Let's hope there future adventures in store for Chet and Bernie, because finishing this book definitely leaves you wanting more.
This is a fantastic book. It is told from the dog's point of veiw. Chet is a K-9 police reject, and he is Bernie's partner in the Private Eye buisness.
When a teen comes up missing, the mother comes to Bernie for help, but as Bernie is investigating, the teen comes home. All seems fine, except Bernie is not satisfied with the answer the teen gives.. not is all as it seems.
The teen comes up missing again, but this time it is for real..... Chet and Bernie are on the job again.
Bernies car ends up vandalized, and Chet gets hurt in the process.
The investigation is on...Chet comes up missing.
What happens next is a slap stick, mystery comedy..
Bernie takes up with bikers.. gets put in the pound and gets rescued.
Wow! Russian gangsters, bikers, shelter workers... a rude parrot and a fishy sounding real estate deal..
Will Chet save the day??