David Rosenfelt is a very busy guy! In addition to releasing a new book in the Andy Carpenter series (Muzzled), with The K Team, he debuts a new spinoff series, one that incorporates some familiar faces.
Retired cop Corey Douglas and his equally retired K-9 partner, a German Shepherd named Simon Garfunkel; Laurie Collins, ex-Paterson, N.J., PD and Andy’s wife; and the inscrutable Marcus Clark, investigator extraordinaire, make up the newly assembled K Team, private investigators for hire.
The team’s first client is a surprise to everyone: Judge Henry “Hatchet” Henderson. The judge, a proverbial pillar of the community and one of the Paterson bench’s straightest arrows, is being blackmailed, and he needs the K Team to find out by who, and for what reason. He demands absolute confidentiality, and refuses to involve the police.
When the blackmailer ramps up the pressure, the judge rebels, telling his tormenter to cease and desist. He then turns on his television to discover that a purported sex scandal in which he’s the main player is the lead story on CNN national news.
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When their client dies, apparently by his own hand, Andy becomes the team’s second client. Though he didn’t like Judge Henderson, he respected him and was incensed that someone seemed to be getting away with murder—the judge’s, as it turns out, along with several others.
A secondary storyline involves Corey Douglas’s reluctantly growing attachment to a woman who seems to be perfect for him—which he’s sure means that it’s a bad idea to get involved with her. The ways he contorts himself to avoid a perfectly pleasurable relationship are amusing, and lighten a litany of duplicitousness and death.
As he often does, Rosenfelt constructs a multi-layered plot, one that involves Cayman Island bank accounts, high-tech shenanigans, financial skullduggery, and a villain who plays an extremely long game. Keeping up with the twists is half the fun.