Julie H.'s Reviews > A Pug's Tale

A Pug's Tale by Alison Pace
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Jul 05, 11

bookshelves: mystery
Read in July, 2011

A Pug's Tale had all the elements of a great mystery: missing painting in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, bevvy of pugs in attendance at the Museum's "Pug Night" event in honor of an impending "signficant gift" from philanthropist and pug-loving eccentric Daphne Markham, and art conservator/heroine/would-be investigator Hope McNeil. While I had high hopes for a complex heist a la the still-unsolved Isabella Stewart Gardner robbery in Boston, and likewise had Patricia Cornwell-inspired hopes for conservation-related science and discernment of fakes from original masterpieces, they went--alas--unmet. Instead, readers are rewarded with charming glimpses of Central Park and the assorted bits of public art it contains, pet-human companion interactions that ring extremely true, as well as instances of where the rules are "bent" into pretzel-shaped contortions for the extremely rich in the major cities (and museums) of the world. As a self-avowed Museum Geek, I was likewise, extremely disappointed by the procedural, ethical, and numerous museum logistical lapses the book contains. As a stand-alone work, however, it's a genuinely fun bit of pug-filled fluff. It could, however, have been the start of an entire series. And for that to have been successful, Pace would have most definitely needed to have brought her art world and materials science A-game. Max is a charming pug, and NYC is--as always--a fascinating background for any novel. For those reasons alone, this is an enjoyable read.
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