Book Review: Dog on It

4 06 2010

Dog on It: A Chet & Bernie Mystery, Spencer Quinn

I really loved this book. Being an animal lover, specifically of the canine variety, this book was right up my alley. The story is a fairly old one; detective and sidekick crack a tough case with some quirky characters or details. But wait! The twist: the one telling the story is the sidekick… and the sidekick is a dog… Yeah, it is a bit odd, but Quinn does a great job channeling his inner dog – and he does so to build drama and real mystery which keeps you reading. For instance, when Bernie is talking with a suspect, Chet nods off and misses (presumably) important details to the case. There are also cute moments when Chet is trying to convey something to Bernie and due to the language barrier (or rather, species barrier), Bernie doesn’t get details his partner knows.

On the other paw… err, hand, Quinn’s use of Chet as the narrator does have some downfalls – like the fact that he’s got a short attention span and often zones out when Bernie is doing real case work. I understand the use of this tactic as it is great for building a dramatic and tense story; but after the fourth or fifth time, I was fidgeting with anger and wishing Bernie had some doggie Ritalin. I also didn’t appreciate the use deus ex machina to return a missing Chet to his owner.

For: A fan of detective novels or quirky adventure books

Rating/Worth It: 8/10, Very original and (if you’re able to appreciate the style) enjoyable.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: