Outfoxed: David Rosenfelt
Brian Atkins has decided that spending time in prisons is much better than being on the outside. That was before he decided to first be a part of a rescue program in prison where he starts out at the beginning of our story, working with a dog named Boomer and even manages to escape from prison with the help of the resourceful dog. But, Brian was on a mission when he disappeared from the prison and wound up well not getting too far as defense attorney Andy Carpenter knowing his client, yes Brian is his client, was getting out in four months, and could not understand why he chose this ridiculous path.
Andy is friends with a police Detective named Pete and knowing that he was going to go after Brian it never dawned on him when he realized he had to find him and did that a simple tracking device would be his downfall as someone was following him as he was tracking Brian. But, Andy is wealthy and never really wants to take a case unless forced to or he finds it necessary. So, along with his partner in the foundation he and a friend set up to train dogs for prisoners, he and Willie hope that when these people are release they will adopt the dogs and take them home. With a five-year sentence and helping out with Boomer a cute and wonderful fox terrier they hope he will adopt when he’s released but as I said he uses the dog to escape. But, Brian had another motive for escaping and it was not entirely selfish. Someone else was involved namely his ex-wife and when afraid she might be caught up in something and in trouble he hoped to find her in order to provide her with some protection. But someone beat him to it and not only was she killed for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, but his ex-business partner too. Brian at the time the novel begins is in prison for defrauding his company and hopefully would have adopted Boomer when he got out. But, his escape and the murder of his wife and partner negates it all as he seems to be the natural suspect in the murder as he was seen by a neighbor coming out of his partner’s house and told the woman to call the police. So, if he committed the murder why make himself known and why tell anyone to call the police alerting him or her to the murders? Andy is lawyer and defending Brian is something he volunteers to do as he save Boomer when they came looking for him and made sure he did not get hurt. But, the evidence his law partner, Hike, reads and relates to him does not help his defense at all. There are strange things that will be uncovered and mysterious things surrounding the deaths.
The Tara Foundation is Andy’s prime work but taking on this case matters to him. When his ex-partner is murdered and then several others follow Andy begins to wonder if the mafia is involved and a man named Dominic Petrone might be at the head and have a hand in the murders. Added in we have his computer nerd Sam the genius who can hack into anything anywhere and Marcus a computer expert and someone who you won’t mess with just looking at him and Edna the secretary that shows up sometimes after she has completed her practice for any upcoming crossword puzzle tournament and his wife Laurie and ex-cop. We cannot forget his adopted son, Ricky who has become proficient in gambling, bookmaking and definitely has it over Andy in many different ways. The kid is smart. So, why at first does he plead guilty and then change his mind?
As the evidence piles up and the author adds his own style of Andy humor, we learn that he knows his way around more than just a courtroom when hoping to get an acquittal but Brian might have to do some real time too for his escape making it impossible it seems to adopt Boomer. His partner was killed and now Andy is looking into Starlight the company he started with Gerry to build routers and other technology that was faster than anything anyone else had. Added in Andy is now working with Barry Leonard a Police Detective using his wiles, his special bribes and sarcasm to get him to tell him what he knows about Dominic Petrone.
But, it goes even deeper as Andy takes Ricky to a Giant’s game and gets on the concession line a chain of events follows causing him to call Laurie, to call Marcus and the two guys after them had no chance. Someone wants to silence Andy but who? Is Petron behind it and what will he do next? A computer company that creates routers and servers and Brian in prison for defrauding his company but when speaking to Yates the new CEO and you hear what he told the police he really does not believe that Brian was guilty of any of the charges, never murder and he thinks he was framed for the rest. Joseph Weston drove his car into a tree and decided to end his life rather than deal with Petrone. Joseph Russo works for Petrone and manages to eliminate the henchman that went after him in his own restaurant Enzo’s in the Bronx, which believe, or not is where I used to live. Told in the first person narrative from Andy’s point of view author David Rosenfelt presents the evidence in different ways, various viewpoints before revealing who might be behind the murders.
Things heat up even more as Andy decides to send Ricky away to safety, he questions Tony Costa in jail hoping he will give him some heads up on Petrone and then we learn that the reason Weston drove his car into a tree is that he was possibly going to be convicted for child pornography in some way. But, he was never on the radar of the police. Now, Andy is hoping to get not only the prosecuting attorney but the police and some members of the mob to help him bring down Petrone. But, knowing David Rosenfelt and the title of the book is Outfoxed there is much more to come and Andy has to yet to undercover what he is missing. However, with Ricky away and Laurie returning there are more players that come into view as Petrone wants Russo to take out Andy and the judge on the case has his own take on the fact that Andy leaked information to the media. The trial begins and each side presents its case and the witnesses seem to have just enough to possibly create some doubt about whether Brian is guilty or not. Hearing Petrone’s voice and the fear in Russo’s makes you wonder why he takes a dangerous step that might cost him more than he is willing to pay.
The pieces start to slowly fit into place and as Andy has Sam and Hike learn more about Denise and Brian’s phone records interesting information comes to light that most people would never know about. Can you literally wipe out someone’s phone records and computer records and have it seem like they were never there? The technology described is mindboggling and the ending even more.
Sometimes the obvious is right in front of you and you just don’t see it. The final scene is explosive and Andy has to hope that Pete comes to his rescue after what happens in court. Will he get Petrone? Who really killed Denise and Gerry and why? What happens when the pieces start falling into place and the body count rises? An ending only David Rosenfelt and Andy Carpenter can deliver until the next case comes their way and hopefully it will be soon. When you complete reading this novel you the reader decide just who was truly OUTFOXED!
Fran Lewis: Just reviews/MJ Magazine