It was a rainy, summer day – one of those days when the air conditioning blasts your rain-drenched clothes and you feel like it’s winter. The gumbo du jour at Five Sisters Blues Cafe was spicy chicken and sausage. The first bite was powerful. Granted, no ensuing bite matched up to that first bite when the dark roux flavor hit my taste buds.
So why do some things get better the more you eat, while others, like gumbo, lose their pizzazz? Chet, the four-legged main character of Spencer Quinn’s Dog On It could answer that in one bark. The hundred-plus pound dog narrates the mystery from first-person, or would that be first-dog? Consequently, almost every page has a reference to smell and taste. This dog smells everything and eats anything – from curried lamb kebobs to golf balls. After reading Dog On It, I have a new appreciation for the sense of smell and taste (plus the two dogs that live at our house). Chet is quite the canine philosopher and tosses a few thought-morsels to the reader. When he hopes his partner, PI Bernie Little, will use a two-for-one coupon to Max’s Memphis Ribs, Chet muses — “Snacks taste better when you’re hungry, but do they ever actually taste bad?”
Chet would love gumbo — every single bite — and he would know why.