Not to mention: entertaining company. One of the other pleasurable features in Block’s series is our narrator’s friendship with dog groomer Carolyn Kaiser, who serves as a lunchtime buddy, sounding board and occasional companion during Bernie’s scouting expeditions. The Bernie/Carolyn dialogs – which cover their love lives, crime and Life in These Times – are comic and satiric, and you can see Block having fun with them. EBooks and electronic locks may be aggravating 21st-century innovations, but good friendships last.

Click here to read the full review in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer