Monday, September 9, 2013

The Sound & The Furry ~ Spencer Quinn (earc) review

The Sound and the Furry (A Chet and Bernie Mystery #6)
Atria Books
September 10, 2013
320 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depo/or Amazon

my reviews of the series: Dog On It #1, Thereby Hangs a Tail #2, To Fetch a Thief #3, The Dog Who Knew Too Much #4, A Fistful of Collars #5

In the sixth installment of the Chet and Bernie mystery series, the private investigator duo head to Louisiana on a missing person's case. One that came their way when they ran into an old -- criminal -- acquaintance of theirs while he was on a roadside work crew and he asked for their help.

Now Bernie Little, of the Little Detective Agency, and his partner the canine Chet are in for a more complicated -- and possibly dangerous -- case full of twists than they could have imagined.

As they investigate the disappearance of Frenchie Boutette's brother Ralph (the only law abiding member of the family (Frenchie they sent to prison), family rivalries, the bayou and Big Oil will all come into play. It becomes clear, rather quickly, that its not a simple missing person's case.

And at times, Chet just may get ahead of Bernie . . . though, that's impossible because, as Chet will always tell you, Bernie's the smartest guy in the room. Or boat.

The Sound and the Furry may be the sixth book in this mystery series, but its just as much fun as the first. Quinn maintains the elements from the previous books that make for such an enjoyable read -- the humor, the good mystery, the characters -- while keeping the plot fresh and unique.

Chet continues to be a fantastic storyteller. Yes, he's a dog but that he is a dog, not a person is really used to its fullest extent in these books. It's not cutesy or pat. Chet is able to pick up on things through smell that only a dog would, things that add to the case -- and the story. He also sometimes doesn't really listen to what Bernie is saying, gets distracted by things or just forgets what happens or was said. This allows the readers to be left out of certain elements of the plot in a way that makes its own, strange, bit of sense.

Yet, readers also gain insight thanks to Chet that the human characters (Bernie included) do not. In addition to what he smells, he also sees -- and sometimes hears -- things on his own. While he may not always understand their significance, having that extra information adds a lot to the unfolding of the mystery. It can even give insight into the characters and their feelings, apart from the 'mystery' of the book.

The mystery in this book was not quite as strong or fun as in the previous ones, at least not the last, A Fistful of Collars. How the characters worked within the mystery was really good but then didn't quite all come together as well as I had hoped for at the end. The 'what' seemed pretty clear, pretty early on except for one part that I seem to still be missing.

It was, however, enjoyable to see Chet and Bernie in a new locale with new things to deal with, new things to encounter. This is easily a go-to series for me, one where I cannot wait for the next installment -- to see what Chet gets up to next. I love reading his interpretations of things! Spencer Quinn does a great job.

Rating: 8/10

 The Series:


thank you to Atria for the egalley through Edelweiss for review

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