Posts Tagged ‘Griffie’

Reader Questions


April 16th, 2022 Posted 7:51 am

Yesterday, referring to the ferret in Tender Is The Bite, Jill Stroh asked: “I’ve been wondering if baseball was involved when you named Griffie, even though the spelling is different.” Although I am an admirer of Ken Griffey, father and son, the answer is no. The name Griffie is actually a clue – there’s a human character with a name quite like that in the story. I’ll say no more. Here Griffie makes his first appearance:
A young woman looked out. Not Mavis, a fact I noticed only in passing. What caught my attention was the ferret on her shoulder. And I’d caught his attention, no doubt about that. He showed me his teeth first thing, just like every ferret I’d ever met. I showed him mine. You’d have done the same. His tiny eyes burned hot. Would playing a game of some sort get us off to a better start? For example, how about the grabbing-the-little-fella-by-his-collar – a velvet collar, by the way, velvet being a material I knew well from an incident with a tapestry, best forgotten – and-flipping-him-up-to-the-ceiling game? Who doesn’t like being flipped up to the ceiling? Although I don’t know personally on account of who could flip the likes of me that high, or anywhere at all? Ah, the likes of me! Once I’d flipped a bunny rabbit name of Ursula – true, not a ferret – so high that I’d had time to run over and catch her in midair and flip her up again! The look on her face! So when would be a good time to get things underway with my new ferret buddy? Now, maybe, like right away, this very –



December 18th, 2021 Posted 7:46 am

There’s been some mention of Griffie – the ferret in Tender Is The Bite, the Chet and Bernie political (sort of) novel. Ferrets and politics? It seemed right to me. Here’s Griffie in action:

“It was stolen. Nice meeting you.” Johnnie Lee took a step back and slammed the door in our faces. Or almost. Bernie has very quick feet, which comes as surprise to a lot of people, and he stuck his foot in the doorway just in time. But then – oh, no – came a surprise on us. Griffie darted down and nipped Bernie’s ankle.

“Ow,” said Bernie, withdrawing his foot. The door closed all the way. Locks thunked into place.

And now I, Chet, was the angry one. A big part of my job was protecting Bernie from the Griffies of this world. I threw myself at the door, making the whole building shake in a very gratifying way, and was gathering myself to do it again when Bernie held up his hand. I didn’t stop, exactly. Let’s just call it a pause.




June 9th, 2021 Posted 7:28 am

“Hey there, little fella,” said Bernie as we got in the car. “Thanks for being patient.”

Excuse me? We were thanking Griffie? And Griffie was giving Bernie that adoring look again? This had to stop. I sat up tall in the shotgun seat and ignored them both. That was bound to get Bernie’s attention, after which we’d dump Griffie wherever we were dumping him and get on with our lives. There was no need for Griffie in this operation, no need for anyone else, for that matter. But especially not Griffie. I hope I’ve made that point. About Griffie, I mean. No Griffie. That’s all you need to know.

(from Tender Is The Bite, coming July 6)



Tender Is The Bite


January 21st, 2021 Posted 8:15 am

Mrs. Publicist: Tender Is the Bite, the next Chet and Bernie, comes out July 6, unless it moves to June for Covid related reasons. How about I corral the writer, Peter Abrahams, (author of the series under his pen name Spencer Quinn) and get the 411 out of him?

Pete: Does anyone say 411 anymore?

Mrs. P: Is that the kind of thing you worry about when you’re writing dialogue?

Pete: Among many others!

Mrs. P: Now, to Tender Is The Bite. Is it true it’s about politics and ferrets?

Pete: That’s one way of looking at it.

Mrs. P: Let’s insert a little sample right here. And for readers out there, Tender Is The Bite is now available for preorder in hardcover and digital versions wherever books are sold.


“That ferret got loose when she was packing the car and she didn’t even stick around to find him.”

Interesting. I wandered off to the trash can enclosure at the side of the building. The plywood door was slightly open, and in the doorway stood Griffie, holding the remains of a pizza slice in his cute little paws. Random pizza slices found here and there are mine as a rule. First I made sure that Griffie would be aware of that from here on in, and then I escorted him nice and gently around to the front.

“The name Mickey Rottoni mean anything to you?” Bernie was saying.

“Nope,” said the landlord. “When it comes to the tenants, I keep my nose – “

Then they were both staring at me, so I never found out about where the landlord kept his nose, which actually seemed to be in the normal place.

“Chet?” said Bernie. “What you got there?”


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