Saturday, December 29, 2007
Dead Center - David Rosenfelt
This is the third Andy Carpenter novel I've read recently. As you know, this series was my personal top new series for 2007.
In this one, Andy goes to Wisconsin where his girlfriend. Laurie, is the acting chief of police to defend a young man from a multiple murder case. The man is accused of murdering two female college students who happen to be members of a cult-like group called the Centurions. In the process of the case, Andy gets wrapped up in other plots by this group.
Strengths of Dead Center: I continue to like Andy. He's a humorous and self-deprecating character with just enough wise-ass to make him interesting. I also like the fact that Rosenfelt has given him independent wealth so that makes the plots more plausible, but it also makes him admirable because of how he uses the money.
Weaknesses of Dead Center: This was not one of the better ones I've read in the series. The plot was left dangling. The bodies were found buried in the acquitted killer's backyard yet we are never told how or why. The reader has to make a lot of assumptions. Once Andy gets the young man acquitted and turns to the Centurions, it's like the author decided to start a different novel. Yes, the two plots do come together, but the reader is left with a lot of questions about both plot lines at the end.
SPOILER ALERT: I also did not like how Andy was able to leave Laurie behind and start a long distance relationship. He has enough money and time to live both places and move freely back and forth. What a cop out by the writer! SPOILER ENDED
Overall, I've found that all series seem to have a weak book in them. I may have found it in this one. I wouldn't recommend starting with this one. I'd only read it if you're reading all of the books, like I am, and want to make sure you know what happens from book to book. If you've read it, I'd love to know what you thought.