‘Best in Snow’ by David Rosenfelt is the 24th Andy Carpenter mystery

Best in Snow by David Rosenfelt

In the Andy Carpenter mysteries, author David Rosenfelt has created an irascible yet lovable attorney and dog lover who only agrees to represent accused murderers after much kicking and screaming. He’s inherited a lot of money from his father, so he doesn’t need to work, and he certainly doesn’t need the stress of having someone’s life in his hands. But in each novel, there is a reason that Andy is compelled to once again dust off his briefcase, call his employees into the office, and use their combined talents to save someone by solving another mystery. Reluctantly.

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‘Dog Eat Dog’ by David Rosenfelt takes intrepid Andy Carpenter to Maine where he performs his legal/investigative magic

Dog Eat Dog by David Rosenfelt

Every Andy Carpenter mystery has a dog in it—usually more than one, and “Dog Eat Dog” is no different. The dog is often the device by which the main character, Andy Carpenter, gets dragged, kicking and screaming (figuratively, at least) into representing someone charged with murder. Someone we readers know is innocent. In this case, the accused murderer meets Andy when they see a dog being abused by its owner. The poor dog is being kicked and dragged on a leash, and before Andy’s intrepid wife Laurie can reach the abuser to stop the abuse (Andy allows her to be the enforcer as she is a former cop), another man steps in. After telling the abuser to stop, the abuser punches the would-be rescuer who then punches back. The police arrive and arrest both men. The dog savior tells Andy it’s not going to go well for him, and Andy doesn’t know why. It was clearly self-defense.

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Simon Garfunkel and Investigative Friends

Animal Instinct by David Rosenfelt

David Rosenfelt’s latest suspenseful and witty mystery opus is “Animal Instinct,” the second in what will surely be another long-running hit novel series, this one featuring the “K Team,” three human investigators plus a very important canine operative, former police dog Simon Garfunkel. Yes, that is his name, which I cite here in full because I laugh so hard every time I see it.

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Andy Carpenter Strikes Again….and Again

“Silent Bite” is author David Rosenfelt’s twenty-second entry in the Andy Carpenter Mystery series, and it’s just as engaging and entertaining as the first twenty-one. I must admit that I’ve now read all twenty-two of them, and I still can’t help laughing out loud at the extraordinarily humorous phrases, sentences, and stories that grace virtually every page. As a matter of fact, LOL now has a home, and its name is Andy Carpenter. But the beauty of these novels lies in the simple realization that they’re both funny and suspenseful. And keeping readers in suspense while they laugh is, indeed, quite a feat.

In “Silent Bite,” attorney Andy’s client is Tony Birch, a former gang-banger who has served prison time because of a manslaughter charge of which he was wrongly accused and convicted. At his trial for that crime-that-wasn’t, two fellow gang members acted as eye-witnesses to his alleged crime, and their incriminating testimonies taken together were the coup-de-grace. Also during that trial, Tony had become so enraged at their fake testimony that he loudly threatened to kill one of them. Now, six years later, both of them have been murdered, and Tony is obviously the prime suspect even though he has straightened out his life in the intervening years and is now a respected small business owner. So Andy takes on his case, this time at the urging of one of his dear friends, Willie Miller, whom Andy had successfully defended in an earlier novel.

As always in these mysteries, Andy and his friends and crew are all sharp, tough, street-wise, and very funny. Each character continually either displays or is the object of Rosenfelt’s own unique sense of humor. Those characters, of course, include the ubiquitous canine pet/investigative assistants. One of them, for example, is the K9 partner of investigator Corey Douglas, whose team works for Andy. No spoilers here, so I won’t tell you the dog’s name, but here are a couple of hints: his initials are SG, and when he stretches (after a doggie-nap, for instance), he forms a virtual bridge over troubled waters.

So Andy and friends investigate; get themselves into all kinds of perilous, even life-threatening situations; patiently and doggedly (!) accumulate clues, and invariably take us on a roller-coaster ride of suspense and laughter. And even though every Andy Carpenter novel is a fascinating and complex mystery, there remains one thing we know for sure: when all is said and done, Andy Carpenter — and David Rosenfelt — will emerge as the winners every time.

‘Dachshund Through the Snow’ by David Rosenfelt is a doggone sweet thriller with plenty of four-legged love to go around

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Fans of the “Andy Carpenter” series are going to be thrilled. New readers will be charmed. With “Dachshund Through the Snow,” author David Rosenfelt has added a new canine to the regulars. There’s Tara, namesake of the late real Tara much beloved by Rosenfelt and his wife, for whom they began to rescue many, many senior dogs. Then there’s the basset hound Sebastian, whose gait is tortoise-slow. Now there’s Simon, retired (thanks to Andy Carpenter’s brilliance and his handler’s love) K9. He and his handler, Corey Douglas, will be making return appearances. Continue reading

‘Outfoxed’ by David Rosenfelt continues the fabulous Andy Carpenter/dog-filled mystery series

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From the fertile, facile, and unfailingly funny imagination of author David Rosenfelt comes “Outfoxed,” the fourteenth installment of the Andy Carpenter mystery series. But don’t let the fact that it’s the fourteenth installment deter you from picking it up — Rosenfelt cleverly manages to make each book a stand-alone that can be enjoyed by either new readers or Andy Carpenter “veterans.”

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‘Collared’ Is Another Masterpiece of Mystery and Mayhem in the ‘Andy Carpenter’ series by David Rosenfelt

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Reading the “Andy Carpenter” series by David Rosenfelt is dangerous.  The books should come with warnings: “Read with Caution, Extremely Addicting.” The latest book in the series, “Collared,” is no exception.

In this case, Carpenter must uncover the mystery of what happened to an abducted baby. It all starts with a dog — of course. A border collie is dropped off at Carpenter’s animal rescue, and the dog’s microchip connects the dog to a woman whose child was abducted, with the dog, three years before. Carpenter’s wife, Laurie, is friends with Jill Hickman, the woman whose adopted baby was kidnapped, so he gets involved.

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‘Blackout’ by David Rosenfelt: Another exciting suspense novel from Rosenfelt

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Rating: 5 stars

The dependably entertaining and prolific David Rosenfelt strikes again with his latest stand-alone thriller, “Blackout.” Filled with his trademark cast of fascinating characters, his always-funny and wittily self-deprecating hero, his usual strong and gorgeous female supporting love interest, and plot twists and turns aplenty, “Blackout” once again provides us with “finish-it-in-one-night” suspense and adventure.

The hero is Doug Blake, a New Jersey State Police officer who is a rebellious, unpredictable, rule-bending, and lovable character. But the first plot twist involving Blake appears not toward the end of the book, but at the very beginning. While hot on the trail of Nicholas Bennett, a loathsome crime lord, Blake is shot, falls on his head, and lapses into a coma. When he emerges from the near-deathly sleep, he is victimized by a rare form of amnesia — he remembers nothing of the last ten years of his life.

It is upon his awakening that we get to really know him (though he wouldn’t know us if we had happened to meet him during the previous ten years) as Rosenfelt’s ubiquitous and amazing talent for first person narrative humor kicks in at full throttle. As always, this author’s uncanny ability to present terrific comedy right along with heart-throbbing suspense hits us directly in the gut. He is unique.

The plot proceeds apace as the questions and suspense crescendo: Who shot Blake? Why did he get shot? Will he get his memory back? Will he be the same man he was before the shooting? What villainous plans are afoot? Who are the bad guys and who are the good guys — and who’s fooling Blake and fooling us?

There’s also a delicious cornucopia of villains here — Bennett the crime lord; Luther, his ruthless hit man; Gharsi, an international terrorist, and the surprise guest-artist/brains behind the whole dastardly plot. A sumptuous villainous feast, indeed. As usual with Rosenfelt, it will keep you on the edge of your seat with suspense while you work hard to keep from falling off your chair with laughter. A winning combination. (JK)

Please note: This review is based on the final hardcover book provided by Minotaur Press for review purposes.

‘Who Let the Dog Out?’ by David Rosenfelt: 13th in Andy Carpenter Mystery series

wholetthe dogout

Rating: 5 stars

In David Rosenfelt’s new mystery/comedy, “Who Let the Dog Out?” that Carpenter man is back again. But this Carpenter, of course, does not build houses out of wood or fix all kinds of things so they work right. Nope, attorney Andy Carpenter builds strong cases for the defense of his unfortunate (and almost always entirely innocent) clients, and all he fixes is the set of injustices which threaten those poor and desperate souls he decides to represent.

In “Who Let the Dog Out?” the first murder victim turns out to be the unfortunate fellow who has, for reasons not yet clear early on in the story, just stolen a beautiful large dog from the animal shelter owned by Andy and managed by his pal and former client, Willie Miller. When the dog thief is found murdered, the dog is found right at the victim’s feet — perfectly happy and apparently healthy.

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‘Lessons from Tara’ by David Rosenfelt: A must-read if you’ve ever loved a dog

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Rating: 5 stars

“Lessons from Tara: Life Advice from the World’s Most Brilliant Dog” by David Rosenfelt is so enjoyable it should be illegal. Anyone who has ever loved a dog will be touched by the stories of the many, many dogs that Rosenfelt and his wife, Debbie, have saved. But what makes Rosenfelt’s writing brilliant is his ability to infuse humor into every page he writes.

This reviewer has never read a book wherein every page — every page, mind you — has caused her to burst out laughing, stop, and insist that her husband stop whatever he is doing so that she could read the funny parts to him. He certainly does’t feel that he needs to read the book now. He’s listened to most of it.

While those of us who rescue know many sad animal stories (because we’ve experienced them), Rosenfelt’s stories consistently amaze, entertain, and disgust — all at the same time. There is an incident recounted, for example, on page 118, in which a golden retriever is abandoned in front of a high-kill shelter in California one morning. “The attached note described her as fifteen, and the owners said that they were going on vacation and didn’t want to pay to board her, so the shelter should put her down.”

That dog lived what must have been three more wonderfully happy years in the Rosenfelt zoo, er, house. Rosenfelt pulls no punches. He continues, “Tessie lived to eighteen with us, and hopefully it was long enough to make her forget the assholes she had lived with all those years. I hope wherever they went on their vacation, they contracted dysentery, and there was no indoor plumbing.”

Rosenfelt’s ubiquitous self-deprecating humor also permeates the anecdotes and is guaranteed to leave the reader, just as it did this reviewer, laughing, loudly and frequently. He even makes fun of mistakes he’s made in his writing. I’ll give away just one: “…they found the victim ‘lying facedown on his back.'” Obviously those mistakes are editing errors, not to be pinned on Rosenfelt — hero to many. Especially his dogs.

Please note: This review is based on an final hardcover book provided by the publisher, St. Martin’s Press, for review purposes.