Friday, September 7, 2018

A Healing Justice

When your contact information is tied to a dog club on the internet, you get some strange calls and emails. I've discussed them before. Sometimes, though, you get lucky. Author Kristin von Kreisler reached out to the club about her latest novel, A Healing Justice. The story is about a German shepherd. She offered a free copy to our Club President in return for an honest review. (Sweet!) When Madame Pres was finished, she passed the book onto me because:
  1. I love to read. (My favorite books are about dogs, dragons and/or dead people.)
  2. I love to blog. And isn't an honest review/free publicity what the author wanted?
The story is about Andrea Brady, a small town police officer in Washington state. One horrible night she is attacked by a teenage neighbor and her police K9 (Justice) is stabbed. She shoots, the boy dies and Andrea's life is turned upside down. The story's point of view flip-flops between Andrea and Tom Wolski, the officer investigating the shooting.

I plowed through this book in less than two days. For the most part, I found it very enjoyable. Working for a small town police department myself, I literally laughed out loud at the calls for service. Yes, neighbors mooning each other is a totally believable complaint. (Here we actually had someone call 911 over the theft of a sandwich. No kidding!)

However, I didn't believe the origin story of Justice. In my decades of association with police departments and dog handlers (both military and civilian), I've never known a random stray dog to become a working K9. Also, K9s belong to the agency, not the officer, so some of the storyline wasn't credible for me. Lastly -- and this is probably just me -- I would have enjoyed the story more without the romance at the end. (I'm a Criminal Minds kind of girl; this felt more Hallmark Channel movie to me.)

All in all, the story was well written. The imagery was vivid and the plot was engaging. It was obvious that the author is familiar with the nuances of German shepherds -- the "look," the ear twitch, the whining and the noble in public/doofus at home personality we all love.

The book will be available September 25 if you're interested. Happy reading! -- K