New Tricks by David Rosenfelt

tricksReviewed by Patricia Reid

If you aren’t acquainted with Andy Carpenter, New Tricks is a good place to start. Andy is an attorney but doesn’t really try to solicit new cases. The cases that he takes on are ones that just fall out of the sky and land on Andy.

When Andy gets a call from Judge Henry “Hatchet” Henderson to take a pro bona case, he has no choice but to appear in court. The case turns out to be a probate matter. Walter Timmerman, Waggy’s owner, has been murdered and Andy is given the job of deciding who is awarded Waggy, a Bernese mountain dog. Waggy is a puppy and the son of a champion dog, now deceased. Walter’s wife, Diana Timmerman, wants custody and so does Walter’s son, Steven Timmerman. Andy goes to the Timmerman estate to pick up Waggy. Andy leaves the Timmerman home with Waggy and gets out just in time. Soon there is nothing much left of the home.

Andy takes Waggy home and introduces him to Tara, Andy’s golden retriever. Tara has no comment but her actions show she can cope with Waggy, at least for the short term. Andy is more focused on the fact that Laurie, his girl friend, who now lives in Wisconsin, is coming for a visit.

Andy soon finds himself not only trying to protect Waggy but also defending Steven who has been charged with murder. Laurie arrives in town to find Andy deeply involved with his new case but falls in love with Tara’s new friend Waggy.

Andy has to draw on the help of his friends to try to uncover why Walter Timmerman was murdered and why Waggy seems to be in danger.

Even in the worst of times, Andy’s humor comes through and his friends bring many interesting aspects to the story. The author’s love and compassion for dogs is always present.

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