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It's a Wonderful Woof

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Its a Wonderful Woof  (Chet & Bernie #12) by Spencer Quinn
Chet is such a wonderful dog. And his voice in these stories is spot on. This time around, Bernie is pulled into finding a missing PI who Bernie had referred a case to. Lots of local history and serious art history. And Bernie just may be falling in twoo wov. Plenty of tension and lots of humor.  I love every one of these books.
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This originally appeared at The Irresponsible Reader.
Someone comes to the Little Detective Agency to hire them, but it's just not the kind of case that calls for Bernie's strengths, but he knows just the right guy for the job, Victor Klovsky. The two had recently run into each other on different cases, and Bernie's been reminded that Victor isn't cut out for the more, shall we say, physically demanding cases—but he's great at the stuff you can do behind a desk, which is what this case calls for.

Also, I think Bernie feels sorry for the guy and thinks he can do him a favor by sending work his way to make up for the way things went during that recent encounter.

You know what they say about roads and best intentions, though. It's not long before Victor has gone missing—a very concerned mother (who has less confidence in his abilities than Bernie does) hires Chet and Bernie to find him. It turns out that not only Victor is missing, but his client is, too.

There's nothing about this case that suggests a cushy desk job anymore—a strong sense of violence surrounds the disappearances—and other elements of the case as it develops. Can Chet and Bernie sniff out what happened to them, and what the relationship is between these disappearances, Mary and Joseph fleeing to Egypt, Caravaggio, and an old Spanish mission?

This is news to no one that has read one book in this series, but Bernie's not good at relationships. Expressing himself to a woman he cares about is not a skill he possesses (I'm sure Chet would differ with me here, but I stand by it).

His current relationship is still pretty new—and seems to be going pretty well. But that's all stuff that happened since Tender is the Bite. It doesn't take him too long to mess things up with Weatherly. Both his reaction to this throughout the novel and the way it started felt different than the way he'd put his foot into it with Suzi (but not completely). The relationships between Bernie and the two women are notably different—which is a relief, too often in situations like this it feels like a duplicate of a previous romance.

It would be very easy to forget that this is a Christmas/Holiday Themed novel—I did more than once, and I was expressly looking to see how Quinn dealt with it.

However, when the holidays do come up? It's great. There's a Hannukah scene that I just loved, and...well there are a couple of great other scenes about the holidays, but my no-spoiler policy stops me from getting into those.

This isn't a big deal—I don't want to make a proverbial mountain out of anything. But it struck me that Bernie's language is a bit stronger than usual. I don't want to take the time and do word counts or anything—I'm lazy and I'm not going to buy e-copies just to document this point. This book is still PG-13, but it jumped out at me and struck me as different—and I'm curious about it.

I had a blast with this—there was a time 5 or 6 books ago, that my interest in the series waned a bit—I still enjoyed the books, but they didn't grab me the way the initial novels did. That's gone, and I have to wonder what was wrong with me—Quinn and Chet are as fresh and entertaining now as they were in Dog Gone It.

There's heart, there's excitement, there's humor, there's the devotion that only a dog can have for their human, and you even can even learn a little bit about art history. Throw in a little holiday magic and you've got yourself another winner in this series.

Go read this—which readers of this series probably don't need me to say. But if you haven't read any before, this functions well enough as a jumping-on point, just be prepared to make some time for the previous 11 novels. You're going to want to read them all.

Disclaimer: I received this eARC from Macmillan-Tor/Forge via NetGalley in exchange for this post—thanks to both for this.
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I want to be totally fair here and tell you that this was my first Chet and Bernie mystery. It is very cute and easy to read. I liked the idea of the narration or POV being from Chet, the dog. There is humor here, and there is fun. However, I think the “view from a dog’s level” made it difficult for me to concentrate. Now, to begin with this is not a nuclear science book where one must study every word. It’s fun. But still, I felt the flow of the story was somewhat  interrupted by Chet the dog and his wandering, mental wanderings that is. If that’s even possible:)  My whole feeling may come from the fact that this is my first book of the series. Maybe it just isn’t a stand-alone. It could well be that if you start reading from the beginning of the series what seemed odd to me is very normal and comfortable for the readers. And for this reason, I think I may owe it to the author to try Book 1. I like mysteries. I like dogs. And I like P.I.’s like Bernie Little.
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First time reader of this series - but I will definitely be catching up.

Chet definitely stoled heart.  The characters are well developed, a good solid, mystery and lots of fun to read!  Mix in the holiday bits and it was a really fun book l!
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How to make a reader very, very happy - have two books to devour in the same year by one of their favorite authors. (It's happened twice this year) Spencer Quinn brings us a Christmas/holiday themed mystery for Chet and Bernie to tackle. Let the laughter begin as Chet starts telling the tale involving missing persons, homicide, art history and possible buried treasure. Add some progress in the romance department for Bernie and this was a great reading escape.
Bernie Little is a PI and Chet is his four legged partner. In each book Chet narrates and, because he's a smart dog he notices things humans are oblivious to but telling Bernie about it is a set up for laughs. The mysteries are solid and the recurring characters are some of my favorites. This series has a permanent spot on my must be read shelf. Now I have to wait until August 9, 2022 for the next Chet and Bernie mystery, Bark to the Future. My thanks to the publisher Forge Books and to NetGalley for giving me an advance copy in exchange for my honest review.
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The twelve-book  (and counting) Chet and Bernie series is about a one-hundred+ pound smart and devoted dog (Chet)--who flunked out of K-9 school--and his intensely-moral, highly-competent human (Bernie) who together operate The Little Detective Agency. They solve murders, find lost people, fix what’s broken, and Bernie sometimes falls in love. What makes this series my close-to-favorite detective series of all times is that it’s told from the perspective of Chet. He’s clever, talented, curious, ever-positive in his attitude, and adores his human partner who he sees as perfect. The affection is returned. Chet is generally upbeat even when circumstances are dire which makes these mysteries low-stress despite being dramatic detective stories filled with thrills and intrigue. It doesn't bother me at all that Chet is more cerebral than I expect a dog really is. For example, he understands most of what Bernie says though inferences and allusions befuddle him. But, NYT bestselling author Spencer Quinn is such a good storyteller I willingly suspend my disbelief in that.

Thank you to NetGalley and Forge Books for providing me with a review copy of Quinn's latest in this series, It's a Wonderful Woof. This is another great entry in this indominable series. Quinn has one more coming out August, 2022 which I will be reading as soon as I can!

If you’re looking for a new favorite detective series and you love dogs, this is it.
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It's a Wonderful Woof is book 12 in the series from Spencer Quinn.

"It's the Holiday Season and Bernie refers a client to Victor, another PI. Victor disappears and Bernie is asked to look for him. He and Chet follow leads to an old abandoned church with a vague past. Is there some long forgotten treasure hidden there? And where is Victor?"

The best part of the Chet and Bernie books is that it's told in Chet's voice. And Chet is hilarious. We get his full on ramblings with plenty of "SQUIRREL" moments. Lots of clues point you to where this one is going but Chet doesn't know - and that makes it fun. This book is fast -paced with plenty of great bad-guy characters. If you haven't read Chet & Bernie, you are missing out on some fun, hilarious, canine crime-fiction. Haven't you always wondered what your dog is really thinking?

A great addition to the series from Quinn.
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Bernie Little and his dog. Chet, of the Little Detective Agency, are on the case! When a new client comes to the Little Detective Agency hoping to hire them for a case, Bernie doesn't feel right about it and turns down the case and recommends the client to another local detective. When that detective then goes missing, Bernie feels obligated to find him. Soon, Bernie and Chet are caught up in the art world and trying to track down an elusive painting and they start digging into the past, as well as the present, to find his friend and solve the case, all while the Christmas season is in full swing. Will he solve the case in time to give everyone a happy holiday? Read this and find out! This is an entertaining, cozy read - just in time for the holidays!
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It may just be starting to feel like fall, but the life of a book blogger means it’s time for Christmas reads!

This year, some of my favorite authors have given the world the gift of a bonus book; that is, a second release in the same year. As someone who waits not-so-patiently every year for my favorite author’s releases, having two books in one year feels like winning. So far, both Mary Kay Andrews and Spencer Quinn have given us Christmas books in addition to their annual release. You can read my review of MKA’s The Santa Suit here, and read on for my review of Spencer Quinn’s It’s a Wonderful Woof.

Tis the season in the valley where Chet lives with his private investigator partner, Bernie. Tis the season for crime and shenanigans, that is. Chet may have flunked out of K-9 school on the last day (was there a cat involved? Read the novella A Cat Was Involved to find out!), but he’s the best in the business. When a fellow PI and acquaintance goes missing, Chet and Bernie are on the case. This particular case may lead them to some interesting places, all tied in to the Christmas story and the saguaros that often dot their landscape. What do Mary and Joseph fleeing Herod have to do with the Sonoran desert? Chet and Bernie are sure to find out!

Like all of Quinn’s uproarious novels, It’s a Wonderful Woof is narrated by Chet. True to form, Chet’s storytelling is laugh out loud funny. Be careful reading in public; this novel is full of irresistibly funny moments. Chet’s canine narration provides many moments of comedic relief, balancing the weight of the story and setting the tone perfectly.

While this story is definitely holiday centric, and a great mystery as that, it also advances the character’s relationships with one another. These well-developed characters are always a joy to spend time with, and this novel is no different. I especially loved seeing more of Weatherly, Trixie, and Shooter. Chet’s interactions with Trixie and Shooter are always extra-funny, while Weatherly is smart and witty. It’s a Wonderful Woof advances the character-driven plots that are interwoven into each installment.

While this novel is full of fun moments and interesting characters, it’s a great mystery and a great holiday story. In fact, it’s the perfect Christmas mystery… as long as you don’t mind a body count.

It’s a Wonderful Woof will be available October 19, 2021. Thank you to Spencer Quinn, NetGalley, and Macmillian-Tor/Forge for an advanced copy such that I could write this review.
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It's Christmas time in the Valley and Chet the Jet and his human, Bernie Little, are hired to find a missing person. Unfortunately, it's Bernie's friend, Victor Klovsky. In spite of the dismal finances of the Little Detective Agency, Bernie sent a prospective client to Victor, because Bernie did not get a good feeling from the client. This leads to a lot of rambling around the Valley, including an abandoned monastery, Nuestra Señora de los Saguaros, dating back to the earliest Spanish explorers. It also includes discovering more than Bernie ever wanted to know about Renaissance art and Caravaggio. There is murder and mayhem, observed by Chet in his own inimitable fashion, which is always the best part of this series. Always an entertaining read.
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I always enjoy reading the adventures of this pair. I'll admit it's a series that can be easier to listen to than read at times, but always enjoyable and just the escapism I need right now.
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The Chet and Bernie series is one of the most consistently enjoyable around. If you've read one before you'll know what to expect - the latest case for the Little Detective Agency told from Chet the dog's point of view. A point of view that's joyfully optimistic if, at times, a little...hazy on the human detail. 
This time around it;'s getting close to Christmas and the duo are trying to find out what happened to a fledgling PI Bernie handed a case off to. Along the way they encounter some old and new friends and...well, everyone's a friend as far as Chet's concerned until he's got to take them down and send them off to break rocks in the hot sun. ..Filled with the usual humour and amusing observations from a canine's point of view it's not ground breaking in terms of doing something different, but that's absolutely no bad thing as far as I'm concerned. 
As always, a pleasure to read.
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Bernie Little is offered an investigation, but doesn't feel really good about the man offering, so he turns the job down. Later, Bernie runs into an old P.I. acquaintance, Victor Klovsky, who needs a job and Bernie gives him the man's card. Shortly thereafter, Victor has disappeared and his mom wants Bernie and Chet his dog partner, to find him. When it turns into a police investigation, Bernie has the chance to see Sergeant Wauneka. The investigation leads to a possible undiscovered painting "Flight into Egypt" by Caravaggio. Holidays are celebrated and as usual Chet  relates the story in his humorous fashion. I am a fan of the nation within the nation and this is a thoughtful, but fun addition. Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.
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Any tale narrated by a pooch - even one who flunked out of K-9 training on the final day - is just too good to pass up, IMHO. And for sure I haven't; several entries in this series (this one makes a dozen) have kept me entertained for years now. Kept in check - well, for the most part - by Bernie Little, owner of the Little Detective Agency, the intensely loyal and intelligent-beyond-his-species four-legged Chet goes about his business of helping his owner solve crimes.

This one immerses the dynamic duo in the world of art - admittedly not a familiar subject for either of them. On top of trying to keep the business afloat, Bernie is hoping that his relationship with beautiful police sergeant Weatherly Wavneka will pick up steam (on this issue, Bernie has Chet's unwavering support even if it means he has to deal with her dog Trixie). The whole mess begins when Bernie turns down a job from what would be a new client and refers the guy to an old friend, Victor Klovsky. Not long thereafter, Victor's mother calls Bernie to say her son has gone missing - and adds that Victor had just started working on the case Bernie sent his way.

The obvious place to start is to find Victor's new client - the one who originally wanted Bernie to take his case. Problem is, that guy has turned up missing as well. With some digging - pun intended - Bernie and Chet find themselves at the ruins of an old Spanish mission, now just a crumbling building and the site of informal archeological digs. That, in turn, leads Bernie into the unfamiliar world of art history (not to mention some serious danger and a dead body or two). 

Throughout it all, there's Chet's ongoing "take" on what's happening, providing doggie insights and a few chuckles. Chalk up another fun adventure well done. Many thanks to the publisher, via NetGalley, for the opportunity to read and review a pre-release copy.
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3.5 stars

In this 12th book in the 'Chet and Bernie' series, the detective team looks for a missing person. The book can be read as a standalone.


In the Chet and Bernie stories, Bernie Little and his hundred-plus pound dog Chet run the Little Detective Agency in the Southwest United States. The books are narrated by Chet, whose somewhat limited vocabulary, unfamiliarity with idioms, and doggie logic set the stage for plenty of smiles.

Bernie is a West Point graduate, good at his job, and Chet is his invaluable partner, always ready to clamp his jaw on perps and drag them off by the pants.

It's Christmas season when the Little Detective Agency is offered a new case. A dapper little man called Lauritz Vogner, who describes himself as Mittel European goulash, offers Bernie a $5,000 retainer to look into a matter involving Baroque art. This isn't Bernie's kind of case though, and he gives Vogner the name of a colleague called Victor Klovsky - a timid sleuth who's good at online research.

A couple of days later Bernie gets a call from Victor's mother, who says her son is missing. As Bernie searches for Victor, he comes across a local example of Baroque architecture - an old deconsecrated mission church called Nuestra Señora de los Saguaros.

When Bernie and Chet visit the antiquated ruin they meet archaeologist Dr. Johanna Borden, who's digging holes in the property. Borden says she's studying the site for a private non-profit, and claims to know nothing about Victor Klovsky. Chet observes that Johanna's a little nervous however, because some smells are unmissable.

Various clues lead Bernie and Chet to a museum gift shop; an art professor; and a hotel, where they find a corpse showing signs of torture. It seems clear that someone is searching for something, and Bernie and Chet have to figure out what and why.

As always Chet helps with the investigation, this time while he and Bernie are searching the hotel room. Bernie mentions turning the place upside down and Chet quickly unhinges the toilet paper roll before Bernie can stop him. As luck would have it a small key is hidden inside the metal toilet paper thingies (as Chet calls them), and this leads to an important discovery.

The case turns out to be very complex, but Bernie and Chet are well up to the job.

While Bernie investigates the case he learns a little about Baroque art and architecture; the Italian painter Caravaggio;and the Spanish explorers that brought missions to Mexico and the American west. Bernie also pursues a romance with Police Sergeant Weatherly Wauneka, decorates Christmas trees, and has weekends with his 6-year-old son Charlie, who wants driving lessons as a Christmas gift.

As for Chet, he enjoys the entire experience, especially the snacks. Over the course of the investigation Chet snaps a pecan and pinon tart out of Bernie's hand; scores a Slim Jim; sneaks a chewy out of a drawer; fishes the remains of a BLT out of a trash can; finds a potato chip; gets a T-R-E-A-T from someone's pocket; and more.

The story is an entertaining Christmas adventure that points to a promising future for Bernie and Chet. It will be fun to see where they go next.

Thanks to Netgalley, Spencer Quinn, and Forge Books for a copy of the book.
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I liked this book but not as wholeheartedly as all the other Chet and Bernie books. This one feels different to me and I can't exactly put my finger on why. It's as if the author and I can't connect in this book. Lots of little things are different that will not even be noticed unless you are like me and find this series a *must read*. Bernie is the lead Little, as in the Little Detective Agency; in fact he is the only Little. Chet is a wonderful 100 pound dog who flunked out of K-9 school on the last part of the obstacle course; there was a cat involved but that doesn't matter because it meant that Chet was up for adoption. This story has Bernie turning down a case but recommending another private detective who needs a hand getting started in the business. Then the PI disappears and his Mom asks Bernie for help. Setting the story in the days leading up to Christmas feels like more of a marketing strategy than any real necessity to help the story.

The ending for this book can only be described by me as strange. Strange in how Bernie acted and strange in how the ending made me wonder if something unexpected had or is going to happen with the series. I've always been perfectly happy to accept the conclusion for all the books that have come before but this one leaves me unsettled. Partly I'm unsettled because what happened was so much the opposite from any kind of action Bernie portrayed in all the previous books. And also, please Spencer Quinn, why did you make something happen that could never, ever have happened in real life?

Thank you to NetGalley and Macmillan - Tor/Forge for an e-galley of this novel.
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private-investigators, dog, urban-fantasy, situational-humor, snarky, family, friendship, law-enforcement, missing-persons, verbal-humor*****

Chet relates the story from his point of view as a failed K-9 but ace PI working with his buddy Bernie who is the human PI of this pair. I really don't think that reading the earlier books is necessary to enjoying the fun and sleuthing in this story. The publisher's blurb is a good hook, so get ready to laugh your sox off while Chet and Bernie save the day!
I requested and received a free temporary ebook copy from Macmillan-Tor/Forge Forge Books via NetGalley. Thank you!
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Bernie's love life gets back on track, with someone new! Chet is his usual vigilant self. Another enjoyable ride with the detective duo, Chet and Bernie. Recommended.
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A new Chet and Bernie book is always a welcome treat (pun intended) and this one doesn't disappoint.  Each book introduces one to another slice of Californian history with a rousing mystery and Chet's doggie take on life.  Another sure winner in the series.
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Bernie is a PI and Chet is his dog. The story is told from Chet’s point of view, with his puzzling over many of the colloquial expressions used by Bernie and the other humans. The mystery begins when an inept PI acquaintance disappears. Soon there is an art mystery, another missing person, and bullets begin to fly. The story is set during the Christmas season, Bernie is getting his life back on track, and Chet enjoys playing in snow.
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