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5.0 out of 5 starsCops, Dogs, and the Dog Watch
Reviewed in the United States on August 30, 2018
I'm a retired Chicago Police lieutenant, author of two novels, and the proud owner of sixteen German Shepherds, so I feel particularly qualified to review and rate Steven Henry's novel," Black Velvet." Kudos to Mr. Henry. He nailed it. I've worked the dog watch more times than I care to remember, and I can attest to the fact that the transition back to days is brutal, as he so accurately depicted. Very entertaining, and very well written. I'd recommend "Black Velvet" to anyone in law enforcement, any dog lover, or anyone who just likes a really good story.
This is an excellent book. It’s nothing more than the best episode of an hour-long police procedural that you’ve ever seen or read, but that’s still very much worth appreciating. It has no filler whatsoever; it’s been edited to within an inch of its life, and every line is essential for the story or to better understand its characters. It’s well-done, it’s memorable, and you’ll finish it in two days, max. What’s not to recommend?
Just discovered Book 1 featuring Erin O'Reilly and her canine companion, Rolf. Both are likable characters and the story grabbed my interest right from the start. I found the story of a stolen art treasure and the mystery of who got away with it to be a fantastic read. Highly recommend it. The only reason I didn't finish the story in one day is because my kindle ran out of power. Thank Heaven the next book is already on Amazon for me to add to my collection. I hope there are other books in the collection!
Interesting to a certain degree but though I didn’t realize the author was male when I purchased it I could tell by his writing that he was. The female protagonist was harsh to put it mildly. It got really old repeating the I’m a patrol cop thing and dating Luke could hv been left out entirely bc it didn’t go anywhere. Also you need a better editor. When she goes to the hotel on a hunch she asked for Shenke or whatever his name was not Van but it was Van’s room. This isn’t a bad book but not stellar either.
5.0 out of 5 starsWell-researched page-turner satisfies on many fronts.
Reviewed in the United States on January 16, 2019
I love it when a book gets under my skin, and I've just GOTTA keep going back to it till I've read it all. I call this "book fever," and boy, did BLACK VELVET give me a case of book fever!
This story appealed to me on many fronts: an art heist, a mystery, and a well-researched K-9 team. Erin O'Reilly is an appealing protagonist. She behaves like a genuine cop, and also like a genuine woman (too rarely the case, from a male author). I also really like it that Rolf, the K-9, behaves in realistic dog ways (no "magical dog" who solves the mystery by chance or intuition). He plays an important part, but he's always a genuinely believable dog.
It's clear Steven Henry has done his research on many fronts. There are many excellent heart-pounding moments, but when the choice is "flashy" or "what would really happen?" this author goes for "what would really." The book is much stronger for it. Erin doesn't stumble onto clues--she works for them. Henry also doesn't have her doing some of the stupid things you too often find in books, that real police officers would not do. I liked that a lot. This protagonist reads more like a "real cop" than so, so many fictional cops!
Yes, there are a few stereotypes and clichés, but they're quiet ones, and they don't get in the way of the story overall. Would I like to have seen a more diverse cast? Definitely. But BLACK VELVET is a promising start for a potentially interesting mystery series, and Steven Henry is an author whose career I intend to follow.
5.0 out of 5 starsMeet Erin O'Reilly and Rolf, K-9
Reviewed in the United States on November 2, 2018
Glancing through a series of suggested books to read, a beautiful German shepherd caught my eye. Reading the synopsis, I learned he is a K-9 dog and his handler is Patrolman Erin O'Reilly of the NYPD. They are working the night shift when the tale begins. Transfer to days Erin visit a bar and meets an art appraiser. He invited her to a major art exhibit. While there, see Erin watched a robbery in progress and becomes involved in attempting to stop it. A follow patrolman is shot and dies in her arms. Erin promised him she would bring the robbers to justice. Erin and Rolf play a major role in finding the gunmen. Erin is suspended as she interfered with the investigation. Will she lose her job and Rolf? I read the book in one setting and started the next book. The story reminded me of the hardcore mysteries of the 80's, only the protagonist is A WOMAN. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS BOOK.
All Erin O'Reilly wants to do is be a patrol cop !like her dad. She's been in the job 11 years & 3 years ago she acquired a new partner. A K-9 named Rolf. She reports to a robbery of a uniform store. She's the only one who notices security guard uniforms are missing. Then she's invited to a showing of recovered paintings from the Nazi 's where she sees the Madonna of the Lake. It's stolen right in front of her & a fellow police officer is killed trying to apprehend them. When Erin tries to talk to the detectives about it, they push her away, but Erin just can't let it go. Even if it means her job. Can't wait to read the next one.
It's not the best written book, it mentions the dog because the officer is the handler but mainly it is about crime that is being investigated. I was drawn in by the picture which is probably what it was meant to do. Not a bad book but not exciting either
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 24, 2019
I don't often read an entire series one after the other, but this is unputdownable! Just kept me wanting to know what was going to happen next. Unfortunately I have now finished book 6 - oh no! it is not the last in the series!! Please hurry up and finish it as I am dying to find out what happens!!!!