Jan 15

Review of The Case of the Caged Cockers

Sometimes an author gets a review that is both incredibly positive and thoughtful that one feels the need to share it. The following is one of those reviews.

The reviewer was talking about The Case of the Caged Cockers, the third book in my new Thousand Islands Doggy Inn Mystery series, but makes a lot of references to the series as a whole.

I have no idea who the reviewer, Red Wolf, is, but I would like to thank him/her for taking the time to write such a wonderful review and I’m so glad you’re enjoying the new series!

Many of the typical elements of a cozy mystery with food and dogs are present. The medical examiner, the high ranking police officer who cannot quite solve the crimes without assistance from our favorite amateur crime solver(s), said amateur crime solver who somehow always has a job that somehow always allows her to have enough free time and money to investigate whenever, wherever, and however she needs to without interference from said job. Wonderful dogs with the necessary skills and personalities, mouthwatering food above what most of us can afford or find or create on a major special occasion as an everyday occurrence.

All this in spades.

But I do not feel like the author is making fun of any of the characters, neither good guys, bad guys, secondary characters, nor those whose roles are less clear at this point in the series. Nor do I feel that the author is making fun of me as the reader of this rather unlikely tale. The author does an incredibly skillful job of making clear that unlikely is not another name for impossible, by picking a setting and a cast of characters that make the plot just believable because it is such an unlikely thing to actually happen that if it did happen, this is exactly how it would probably have happened, and exactly who it would have happened to.

Real world events happen to unique individuals. No one else is exactly like your third-grade teacher or the first boy you kissed, and no dogs you had before is like your current dogs. So why do so many characters in cozy mysteries seem so similar? It is great to have a chief of police who is competent, loves his job, doesn’t want civilians getting hurt or in over their heads, but does accept that some people will tell someone else things that they would not tell him, or will not do things when he is around that they have no hesitation doing to impress a stunningly beautiful woman.

I have read some cozy mysteries that I like, but not many that impressed me. So far this series is a startling exception, just because all the elements seem so startling that the whole book actually feels as if it could have happened. If any characters could have succeeded the way that the good guys did, it would have been these unlikely good guys. If any bad guys could have made some of the mistakes these bad guys made, it would have been these bad guys. The bad guys are not all evil to the core. The good guys have weaknesses, but ones you could accept in a friend. These are not your typical friends and neighbors, but they do remind you from time to time of someone you knew. To me that makes this a memorable and enjoyable story.

I hope the author can keep this up for twenty-three more letters.


  1. Sarah Mallery

    Congrats, Bernie! Great review… Of course that doesn’t surprise me at all!!😄😄

    1. Bernie

      Thanks so much, Sarah! Appreciate all your support.

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