scents and sensibility

Scents and Sensibility by Spencer Quinn

I have a tendency to best appreciate darker novels but if I discover a lighter novel or a series with elements I appreciate, I'll sometimes cling to them. I've been reading Chet & Bernie's stories since the beginning. If you're not familiar, Bernie is the private detective and Chet is his canine partner... and the protagonist and narrator of the mysteries. Also, though Chet is clever and funny and insightful, these stories aren't all light and fluff. 

Scents and Sensibility is thus far the best exemplar of this. Readers have been surprised and confused by the ending here. All of the other Bernie & Chet books have contained continuing storylines and elements but can also be read as stand-alone novels, each mystery or major plotline resolved by the end. Scents ends, alternately, with a cliffhanger.

Many longtime fans of Chet & Bernie are worried about this - about what might happen in the next book or whether there even is a next one. I'm content either way, in part because I believe that this is just a clever cliffhanger that we've never seen before but that the story will continue on, but also because series feel most trustworthy and engaging for me when the characters do not remain static. 

Speaking of which, if you're a fan, take a closer look at the book's cover and you'll see a second silhouette there - we have a return and more central role for Shooter, despite that Chet sometimes thinks he's a "very annoying dude". He's also a very cute and sympathetic dude.

If you already love Chet & Bernie, you'll love this newest addition and if you don't but like the idea of a clever and courageous and compassionate canine narrator, start in on the first book now.  

*Also, unless I receive an ARC from the publisher (this was not one), I listen to these novels on audiobook because the narrator, Jim Frangione, is awesome.