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Tuesday 18 December 2018

‘Deck the Hounds’ by David Rosenfelt

Published by Minotaur Books,
16 October 2018,
ISBN: 978-1-250-19848-8 (HB)

For most people, the Christmas season starts sometime after Thanksgiving and ends pretty much by New Year’s Eve. For attorney Andy Carpenter, thanks to his wife Laurie, Christmas starts right after Thanksgiving dinner and goes until the end of January.  This year, as part of their holiday giving, they wind up with Don Carrigan and his pregnant dog Zoey living over their garage - until Don is arrested for murder. Don has PTSD ; one of his major issues is claustrophobia.  One can see how being arrested might make his life difficult.  Andy ends up being Don’s lawyer, which means (for Andy) trying to find out who really murdered Steven McMaster, a man Don swears he doesn’t know and has never met.  

Concurrently, and perhaps unrelated to Don’s issues, a sniper is killing people for no discernable reason other than a (sometimes remote) connection to a divorce case.  Rosenfelt has been writing mysteries long enough to ensure that this sub-plot, and one or two others, all work together to make a very interesting mystery.  The characters are believable, if not always likeable and/or pleasant.  Judging by the rest of the titles on Rosenfelt’s backlist, dogs are a big part of his life, and his books.  Deck the Hounds is no exception, although they are certainly not pivotal to the story.  All in all, an enjoyable read for the holidays.
Reviewer: P.J. Coldren

David Rosenfelt is the Edgar-nominated and Shamus Award-winning author of several stand-alones and a dozen Andy Carpenter novels, including Who Let the Dog Out? After years living in California, he and his wife moved to Maine with twenty-five golden retrievers that they've rescued. Rosenfelt's hilarious account of this cross-country move, Dogtripping, is available from St. Martin's Press.

P J Coldren has been reading and reviewing mystery fiction for over a quarter of a century. She reads broadly within just about all genres and sub-genres. She was a preliminary judge for the Malice Domestic/St. Martin’s Press Best First Traditional Mystery Novel Contest for at least 25 years. She lives in Northern lower Michigan with one large cat, and 2 fairly small dogs.  She says, ‘I am totally chuffed to be the Fan Guest of Honor at Malice Domestic 2019.  

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