“Collared” by David Rosenfelt is book sixteen in the Andy Carpenter series. Never fear new readers, you will enjoy this book even if you haven’t read any of the previous books, but once you finish this one, you will absolutely want to go back to read the series from the beginning; it’s just that entertaining.
Andy Carpenter is a lawyer with so much money that instead of practicing law, he runs a dog rescue foundation. (Note: details of that journey are in the previous books.) A woman drops off a dog at the shelter, and when staff runs the chip, they find this dog has a history that includes kidnapping, corporate connections, and a culprit in jail. The plot is treacherous and intricate and yet every detail falls nicely into place at the end. The action moves quickly without being bogged down by distractions, and even the drama and danger is softened with humor.
The story includes multiple murders, organized crime, child abduction, and sabotage, and while that scenario might seem to be a typical one for a mysteries series, the characters make this tale far from typical. They are a funny, easy-going, realistic group of people, and we want them to be our friends; we support them despite their flaws. The little details of their lives matter to us, and we keep turning the pages to find out what they are doing.
I have read the whole Andy Carpenter series and loved every one. I started with one of the books in the middle, and when I finished, I just had to go back and read them all from the first one. Rosenfelt has found an astonishing way to make every book different, compelling and above all fun, even though he basically tells the same story each time. The characters grow and change in every book, but they are still the same dependable, fun group. They want truth, justice, and the American way to prevail even if they have to go to court to right the wrongs, punish the guilty, and free the innocent. Oh, and save dogs.
Seriously, you will love this book, but watch out, you might just laugh out loud while reading it.