Bury the Lead
Mysterious Press, 2004 (2004)
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Reviewed by Hilary Williamson
his is the third in the Andy Carpenter series of light legal mysteries, following
Open and Shut
. It's all very improbable but engaging nevertheless. Carpenter is a multi-millionaire lawyer, able to pick and choose his cases. He is committed (but not married) to his chief investigator, Laurie Collins. He's also partnered with ex-death row inmate Willie Miller in a dog rescue operation, and loves his own golden retriever Tara. Along the way, he's shared his winnings with an assortment of friends, including Laurie and his secretary Edna (unfortunately they're all better at the investment game than he is).
ow, Andy's old friend, and local newspaper editor, Vince Sanders, hires him to consult on the paper's involvement with the police in a serial killer case. It seems the murderer has appointed one of the paper's reporters, Daniel Cummings, as his interface with the authorities. Victims, who seem to have nothing in common, are strangled and their hands severed. The case heats up suddenly when superstar whistle-blower Linda Padilla ends up dead, and Vince becomes frantic when Cummings is arrested as the killer. He insists that Carpenter take the case, despite a heavy weight of evidence against Cummings. Soon Andy is losing in court, while coping with hookers, organized crime and a hit man in his spare time.
hile the plot twists and turns nicely all over the map and the courtroom scenes are entertaining, the strength of this legal series lies in the relationships amongst the ever-growing circle of Andy's friends, and in dialog like the reference he gives while convincing Willie to hire an ex-prostitute, '
I think she was in the motel field. She's also been in and out of the automotive industry.
Bury the Lead
is silly, but lots of fun for those who like their courtrooms cozy.
2nd Review by Mary Ann Smyth:
J lawyer Andy Carpenter is back for another round with crime. Women's bodies - strangled and with their hands cut off - have been discovered in Paterson. A local reporter, accused of the crimes, faces trial and hires Andy to save him from conviction.
ndy is a great character. He has oodles of money and needn't work but likes to keep his hand in. He's in love with Laurie and with his dog Tara. Not necessarily in that order. He's methodical, thinks logically, is loyal, honest, and a true-blue friend. Not always the best qualities to fight in court, but it works for him. He is also not the bravest banana in the bunch. But, what the heck. Can't have everything.
e has a good sense of humor that keeps him going. I liked Andy and I liked his story. The plot starts off simply but grows more complex with each chapter. When you think you have reached the climax, you find you ain't there yet. Just when all the pieces fall into place, there's another glitch that changes everything. Fun book. Don't miss it.
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