Books · Reviews

Dog On It – Audiobook Review (Spoiler-Free)

Hey guys πŸ™‚ Long time no see! Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and New Year’s Eve ❀ ❀ Do you feel ready for 2018? I know I am!

Fun fact: 2018 is the Chinese year of the Dog! So being the cheesy person that I am, I decided my first review of the year would be a book about dogs! Or a dog, in particular. And his human companion. Going on adventures to help solve crimes.

Alright, I’ll show myself out…


 

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synopsis17

Chet, the wise and lovable canine narrator of Dog on It, and Bernie, a down-on-his-luck private investigator, are quick to take a new case involving a frantic mother searching for her teenage daughter. But not everything is as it seems and both will find themselves in a whole lot more trouble than they bargained for…


first-impressions

I really wasn’t expecting to love this as much as I did. I picked it up on a whim, looking for books about dogs, and thought “Why not? I haven’t read this type of story in a while and I do enjoy detective stories”. So I started listening to it and almost instantly fell in love. Needless to say, the new year is already looking up!


the-sweet

This book was absolutely delightful, in every sense of the word.

Chet is one of those characters/narrators that simply melt your heart. He’s the epitome of the saying “we don’t deserve dogs” and truly, we don’t. He is so charismatic, charming, funny, sweet, and with that childish innocence that constantly puzzles our cynical human minds… I wouldn’t be able to say a bad thing about him. It would be as awful as stepping on a dog’s tail by accident.

There was not a single chapter where I wouldn’t smile at Chet’s antics. I think the author captured this dog’s essence perfectly and what went on in his head. Oftentimes, animals in books/movies are portrayed as these almost supernatural beings with an above average intelligence (usually even superior to their human counterparts), able to solve every problem in an instant. Which sounds pretty awesome on paper but doesn’t really look too authentic. Now don’t get me wrong: I think dogs are extremely smart. But even they have their limits.

Quinn didn’t go down that path, though. He knew exactly how a dog would behave and think in each situation and didn’t try to embellish it in any way. It was hilarious to follow Chet’s thought process throughout the story; he has the shortest attention span on Earth and is such an adorkable muppet I couldn’t stop laughing. His loyalty and determination knew no bounds and I could barely take it when something wrong happened and he found himself in danger. Very anxious-inducing.

Bernie, his owner and partner, was a very likable character as well. Tough, ruff, but with an extremely big heart, he and Chet made the perfect team. He definitely took a backseat and allowed Chet to shine in every scene, which I didn’t mind at all (actually preferred) but it was hard not to sympathize with him and want his life to turn around. Susie was an interesting addition, as was Bernie’s son; two relationships that really complemented the old detective’s seemingly uneventful life. It made me quite sad to witness his fragility when it came to romance and parenthood, though they really added to his character.

The plot was interesting and a nice mystery to keep one on their toes. I liked how the author managed to keep it realistic despite the subject manner, and respect the reader enough not to presume they wouldn’t be smart enough to figure it out. So he added layers and diversified as much as possible.

Finally, I absolutely loved the audiobook narrator, Jim Frangione. He was the perfect voice for Chet and Bernie and even made the female voices sound great. I loved the accents he created and how easily he switched between characters without missing a beat. He captured all of the moods and all of the character quirks masterfully and it was a pleasure listening to him. I will definitely keep an eye out for more of his work.


the-bitter

The pacing was something I struggled with, at one point. Sometimes it would be lightning-fast and full of adventure, and then fizzle out completely into something akin to boring. Now, I know there can’t be action in every single scene, but the way the story kept stepping on the gas pedal, almost reaching some sort of climax, and then completely stopping kind of bothered me.

I get that every mystery is different and the fact that it wasn’t full-on excitement all the time, mixing in some family drama, romance and everyday life, made it realistic. Which I appreciated. But I still couldn’t quite help feeling disgruntled at times.

Surprisingly, everything else was so on point and so entertaining, that I really didn’t mind the pace’s inconsistency or whether the plot was dense enough. They ended up being such small reasons for enjoying this book, they became almost obsolete.


final-thoughts

I’ll probably never be able to find anyone who dislikes this book. And if they exist, they are monsters. Plain and simple. How could you not love this? Chet and Bernie? Pals forever? Even little Charlie and his “Chet the Jet!” interjections will make you smile.

If you love dogs, you’ll be completely taken by the main character who is such a sweetheart he makes you want to reach inside the page to pet him. All the other characters were great too, no doubt about it, but it’s Chet who really takes the spotlight.

His narration was incredibly strong and realistic, and made the book work. He was adoringly funny and such an interesting and different perspective from what I’m used to. The mystery aspect in this was solid, with some cool twists to really keep us guessing, but if you’re going in with the sole purpose of following the clues along and finding out what happens in the end, you’ll be sorely disappointed.

This is one of those books where it’s the journey that counts, not the destination. It’s its characters and the relationships between them that really bring it to life and keep you interested. It’s the fact that you care about the heroes, and want to see them pull through. It’s their endearing personalities and how they deal with the problems in their lives. So even though I enjoyed tagging along for the ride, I wouldn’t have cared less had my travel companions been anything short of awesome.

This is number one in the series and I’m definitely going to continue it. I recommend you do the same if you’re like me and love dogs, great humor and a lovely tale of friendship!Β 

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Thank you so much for reading and until next time!

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How was your New Year’s? Have you started reading anything yet? Participating in any reading challenges?
Did you enjoy this review? Leave me your comments below! q^β€Ώ^ q

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67 thoughts on “Dog On It – Audiobook Review (Spoiler-Free)

  1. I so love dogs! I’m a proud dog owner. Years ago I’ve read The Art of racing in the Rain and the main character was a dog. It was just fantastic! Fun fact: I’m born on the dog year too but of course a long time ago πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dogs are the absolute greatest!! Me too, and I’ve had dogs all my life so I really don’t see myself without one πŸ™‚
      I think I saw that one during my search for dog books but wasn’t too sure it would be my kind of read. Glad to see I was wrong! I might give it a go sometime as I’m planning to read more dog books this year to continue my little celebration ^^
      Thank you for the rec! ❀ And oh that's so cool πŸ˜€ I was born on the Monkey year, which is not that awesome hahaha

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This book sounds like so much fun! I haven’t read a book like this in a really long time, and now I really want to read this! And it is the year of the dog like you said! That means I have to follow suit and read a bunch of dog books! I love dogs!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was a lot of fun, Em! I think you would really love it πŸ™‚ It definitely isn’t my usual type of read but I absolutely adored it.
      Hahaha I would love to see some dog book reviews from you!! If you happen to have any recs, I would gladly take them πŸ™‚
      Me too!!! Dogs are the best ❀ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. They are!! I really want to read Marley & Me (I saw the movie like 10 years ago or something and remember loving it, so I hope the book is good) and Lily and the Octopus (which I’ve heard is amazing, and also a tearjerker).

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        1. Oh God, Marley & Me… I started the book once and was in tears! So I stopped reading it and never picked it up again. It was just so sad and heartbreaking! But it was a super great read up until that point πŸ™‚
          I’ve heard amazing things about Lily and the Octopus as well but, again, I try to stay clear off tearjerkers hahaha Maybe one day!
          This one was perfect because, even though it had its share of less happy moments, it never gave me that feeling of my heart being wrenched out of my chest, which I hate πŸ˜‚ It was mostly hopeful and upbeat, so just amazing ❀

          Liked by 1 person

    1. It is super cute!! I think anyone who reads this will be instantly in love and it’s not an exaggeration πŸ˜›
      Oh I get that… I’m not the type of person to just pet any dog either and will be pretty scared of big ones I see on the street, but otherwise love dogs! I can’t get over how adorable they are.
      Thank you so much, Analee ❀ ❀ I hope you get to read it soon! You won't regret it πŸ™‚

      Like

  3. That layout for this post 😍😍 It seriously is so cool the way you keep improving these, awesome stuff. Honestly, as crazy as this might sound, I have never listened to an audio book before. This book does sound like fun, but I also have to admit this isn’t my usual cup of tea so to speak. But, that said, with such an enthusiastic review to cover it, I have added it to my to read list. Maybe one day, I will get to it, stranger things have happened πŸ˜€ Great post as always! πŸ˜€πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aaaww glad to hear you like it! I thought I’d change things up a bit for the New Year πŸ™‚ And I’m improving? Yay!! That’s so sweet of you ^^
      Well, lots of people have never tried audiobooks so don’t feel bad! They’re not for everyone, that’s for sure. But I think it’d be really cool to try one, just to see whether you’d enjoy it or not πŸ™‚
      Funny you should mention it because this is not my usual cup of tea either! Still, it managed to capture my heart and that’s not something that happens too easily, so I’d give it a shot if you can πŸ™‚ I don’t think it’s possible not to like it, as I’ve mentioned! So hopefully, it’ll be the same for you πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much, Michel! Will look forward to your thoughts on this book ^^

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I have wanted to try audiobooks for quite a number of times niet, but for some reason it still hasn’t happened. But who knows, this one might just be my first audiobook πŸ˜€ If I get around to hearing it , I will make sure that I will let you know my thoughts for it πŸ˜€

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  4. Another great review! I love your new designs, by the way. Very cute and stylish. πŸ™‚

    This sounds like a cute read and I’m glad that you enjoyed it! Chet sounds like a fabulous dog. Dogs are such amazing animals and, I agree, we don’t deserve them. Too bad about the pacing at one point, but I’m glad that this was enjoyable read regardless! I might have to check this out since I absolutely love dogs. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Heidi! That’s so sweet of you, I’m glad you like them 😊
      It was! And Chet is the greatest ❀ The pacing was such a small part of the book, I only mentioned it because otherwise this would a 5 star review hahaha Didn't spoil my enjoyment significantly at all.
      I absolutely recommend it! If you love dogs, you will most definitely love this as well πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  5. The dog is the narrator? That sounds awesome! Usually I read detective stories to follow the clues, but I am pretty sure I could make an exception for this one, especially if it so entertaining!

    I am really glad the first book of the year for you was such a lovely read!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yup, and he’s such a terrific one at that! He’s obviously not the most reliable of narrators, of course, but he’s so adorkable and has such a different perspective on things (which the author really did a great job showcasing) you feel like you’re actually inside a dog’s head.
      I found that insanely entertaining, even more so than the plot itself. Which is not to say the plot was bad at all so I’m sure you’ll enjoy following the clues along as well πŸ™‚
      Thanks, it was such a lovely surprise for sure! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  6. You convinced me, Sophie. I love dogs but some dog-books are so sad, I just can’t take it. This one sounds like fun and I love the way you describe Chet. I’m picking up the print version so the hubby can read it too. Thanks for the great review. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh yay! That makes me really happy, Diana πŸ™‚
      This is definitely not a sad book, although it does have some sad moments here and there. It’s mostly upbeat, which I love!
      I hope you and your husband love it just as much as I did ❀️ Chet will be the highlight of anyone’s day!
      Thank you so much for reading 😊

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Hahaha no problem ❀ I wouldn't want to read anything where the dog dies at the end either… It's just way too sad for me. And same here! Humans' death I can handle, but animals' is just awful. I would never stop crying!
          Chet is very much alive and well by the end and you may continue to follow his adventures in the next installments πŸ™‚ Knowing that beforehand was a huge part of my decision to read this one, actually πŸ˜‰

          Liked by 1 person

  7. What a fun review! I want to read this book, because of everything you say about it. One problem, I LOVE dogs, and lost my dog-love-of-my-life three years ago. I’m afraid by reading this book, I’ll miss Henry that much more.
    But I still think I’ll try it. I don’t read audio books (can’t ‘concentrate’ as much as with the written word). But your review of this book, and enjoying the audio part of it, encourages me to have my own books made into audio books.

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    1. Oh, I’m so sorry to hear that, Pamela 😦 Losing a pet is never easy and may even be one of the most traumatic experiences one can have. I hope your Henry is safe and well in doggie heaven and having tons of fun ❀
      It might be hard at first to read this because Chet is extremely likable and you will easily fall in love with him. It might remind you of Henry and tug at your heartstrings. But I still think it’s very worth it because it’s such an adorable story about a dog and his human companion making things right in the world. Just incredibly heartwarming and relatable to dog lovers! Still, I understand if you decide not to read it.
      The audiobook worked really well for me, personally, as the narrator really made the characters come to life so I would recommend it even if you’re not a fan of the format. I frequently use audiobooks and know of many readers who do so as well. They’re so useful and handy! So I believe you would definitely gain a lot by having your books turned into them πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much for enjoying my review! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I ordered the book! I think my guy will like it to, so we’ll share it. Henry ‘visits’ me every so often with a soft lick on my hand, a sigh of fur on my arm. Our pets are always ‘with us,’ one way or another. xo

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    1. It is super adorable! If you like dogs, you most certainly will love this book πŸ™‚ I don’t read many dog books either (I’ve read maybe one or two in my life?) but I think I’ll be picking them a lot more from now on!
      Thank you so much 😊 ❀

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Aw, I love that type of book too! I just love learning random facts about anything, really, so learning about dogs is the absolute cherry on top πŸ™‚ I just find it all so fascinating!
          I hope you enjoy that one and whichever books you find in the future about dogs. I have a shelf on GR dedicated to them, so if you’d like to get some recs do stop by πŸ™‚ I’ll try and keep adding more to it as I go!

          Liked by 1 person

  8. β€œI’ll probably never be able to find anyone who dislikes this book. And if they exist, they are monsters. Plain and simple.”

    Ha! Love that. This book sounds interesting. I don’t think I’ve ever read anything featuring a dog as the main character.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. This book sounds like such fun! I just noticed that the Year of the Dog is coming up soon as well. What a perfect read to start the new year. The only other dog book that I can think of is the MG book Because of Winn Dixie. I think that the movie A Dog’s Purpose may be based on a book, but I am not entirely certain. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts on this one. It looks like something I might try to use up those Audible credits with. πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is super fun! Yeah, that’s why I thought it would be a nice choice ^^
      I haven’t heard of Because of Winn Dixie but I came across A Dog’s Purpose many times, both as a book and as the movie inspired by it. It sounds a bit of a tearjerker, though, which is not something I’m looking for right now….
      I hope you enjoy it! I think it’s one of those books that are way more entertaining as an audiobook πŸ™‚ I just loved the narrator so much, it felt like Chet was right there ❀

      Like

  10. This sounds like a fun book! That’s really interesting that it has narration from a dog’s perspective, and that the narration is realistic. I don’t know if I’ve encountered a book with a dog point of view character (where it wasn’t a magical dog or another being in a dog’s form), but I remember thinking that the dog’s thoughts in The Knife of Never Letting Go seemed fairly realistic. You’re right though, often dogs are presented as being more intelligent than is really plausible – I’m currently listening to To Say Nothing of the Dog – and the dog in it is often construed as having more understanding of what is going on and being discussed than a dog rightly should… though its reactions are hilarious πŸ™‚

    Like

    1. Hmm I haven’t read that one yet, sadly! But I’m glad it has a similar vibe to it πŸ™‚
      Chet’s reactions were hilarious as well, sort of like a kid first discovering the world? I don’t know how to explain it other than it being super endearing and making me laugh a lot hahaha
      I’m fine with dogs being portrayed as above average as long as there’s an explanation for it, like a supernatural one. But in a contemporary, it just doesn’t ring as genuine to me.
      I hope To Say Nothing of the Dog is worth it in the end! Thanks for your lovely comment, Nicola, as always ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Awww I’m so glad you enjoyed this book so much! It sounds so adorable and how could you not smile or melt while reading this?! I’m pretty sure that I’d feel the same way as you, if I were to pick this up. Funny thing, I was looking at dog books over Christmas break and came across Finding Gobi which sounded emotional but sweet but this one I’m moving ahead of that. Fabulous review!

    Like

    1. Thank you so much, Jen! And yes, all of the above hahaha
      I’m not familiar with Finding Gobi but I might look into it. This one definitely made me want to read more dog books ^_^
      I hope you manage to read it, I’m sure it’ll make you smile a lot too!
      Thank you so much ❀

      Like

  12. First of all, absolutely love the graphics. I honestly don’t know how you do it. But I love it. Don’t stop! πŸ˜€ Also love that the whole dog-human relationship was perfectly done. And gosh, I think dog’s can be at both extremes of the spectrum: Smart as hell and dumb as f*** hahahahah There are some really well trained dogs that just look like animal counterparts of Sherlock Holmes or something though hahaha I’m glad you enjoyed this so much though. Hopefully the next book will be just as good, with a better control of its pace too! πŸ˜‰

    Like

    1. Oh thanks! I’m glad you like them ^_^ Hahaha I won’t πŸ˜›
      I think you’re right! Sometimes they can be way too much or way too little, no middle ground… I think Chet was very balanced and believable, especially because of his attention deficit and how dogs always seem to be hyper and random. I thought that was done perfectly! And it made me laugh like a maniac every time xD
      Thank you! So far so good πŸ™‚ I hope I have my next review up by the end of this week!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. LOVE THE NEW GRAPHICS SOPHIE! And this is the BEST book to start the new year… love your reasons too πŸ˜‰ I passed on this book to my writing partner! She loves mysteries and we both love reading about humanized animals… that was the b3st part of your review… you totally won me over describ8ng how well the dog was done β™₯️

    Like

    1. Thank you so much, Dani ❀ Just felt like a good idea!
      Oh I really hope she loves it but honestly, I can't see how anyone wouldn't… This is definitely an underrated gem that needs to be shared!
      I'm so glad πŸ™‚ I tried my best to talk about how this book made me feel ended up sounding like a real fangirl xD Chet is such a dorky doofus, you'll adore him!

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Oh how cool Sophie! I just posted a review that have both dogs and mystery concept πŸ™‚ I’m glad this book is a great read for you. I haven’t heard of it before but I’m so glad to know it has many things I like in a book: twisty mystery, good characters, and humor.I like your focus on the lunar new year aspect πŸ™‚ Fantastic review as always!

    Like

  15. Oh I didn’t realise it was the year of the dog- I love that you made that connection with your first review of the year! Sounds like fun- I’m glad the characters and relationships brought this to life πŸ˜€ Great review!

    Like

    1. I didn’t know either, just found out by accident! But thought it was a great opportunity to read a dog’s book, nonetheless πŸ™‚ (and more, hopefully) I know it only starts in February, technically, but just felt like a good time to post about it.
      Thanks so much! It really is a terrific read ❀

      Liked by 1 person

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