Review of “Holy Chow” by David Rosenfelt 

This is #25 in the Andy Carpenter crime/legal procedural series that always manages to get me laughing out loud.

Andy thinks of himself as a retired lawyer, but when a case comes along that somehow involves a dog, he can’t resist getting involved, as much as he pretends he doesn’t want to. His latest return to work was precipitated when a woman who rescued a dog from his Tara Foundation the year before called him up. Rachel Morehouse wanted Andy to ensure that in the event she passed away, her dog Lion, an older Chow Chow, would go to a good home if her stepson Tony didn’t want to take him.

Shortly thereafter, Andy learned Rachel died, and was probably murdered. He was summoned for a reading of her will, where he discovered, inter alia, that Rachel had been worth at least $12 billion. Her late husband was Stanley Wasserman, who ran one of the nation’s largest private equity companies. Before the will could even be read, however, Tony was arrested for her death. Tony had been visiting Rachel, and he was the one who discovered her body.

Tony asked Andy to defend him, but this was after Tony declared to Andy how much he liked Lion. How could Andy resist defending a dog lover? It was clear Andy couldn’t turn him down, even though that meant, much to Andy’s chagrin, letting his wife Laurie be right when she predicted he would take the case.

As the investigation proceeds, Andy uncovers a convoluted plot of corruption so deep he feels it threatens homeland security as well as the individuals who happened upon the truth and then happened to get dead. He quickly becomes convinced that Tony was framed. And as he gets closer to the truth, Andy also has his life threatened. As usual, he is saved by his much braver wife Laurie and Laurie’s muscle, the always amusing, albeit usually taciturn and unintelligible Marcus. But can Andy save Tony? It’s up to the jury, and the outcome is unclear until the very end.

Evaluation: I look forward to new entries in this series, which, by the way, you don’t really need to read in the order they were written. Andy’s sarcasm and wit are unfailingly entertaining, as are his relationships with the rest of his team, which in this book also includes the “Bubeleh Team” – a group of elderly Jews who like to help hacking computer records and who bake lots of treats for Andy. For a quick, diverting read that challenges you at the same time, you can’t go wrong with David Rosenfelt’s Andy Carpenter series.

Rating: 3.5/5

Published by Minotaur Books, an imprint of St. Martin’s Publishing Group, 2022

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