By Peter Brodbeck
David Rosenfelt, was born and raised in Paterson, New Jersey, his childhood consisted of the usual boy antics; eating, sports and avoiding homework. After graduating from NYU, Rosenfelt entered the movie industry as the President of Marketing for Tri Star Pictures. Although he enjoyed the big screen, Rosenfelt discovered a love for screenwriting that evolved in to a passion for writing novels. Rosenfelt’s first two novels were “Open and Shut”, which earned him a nomination for the Edgar, and “First Degree” which was selected as one of the best mystery novels of the year by Publishers Weekly. The focal character of the books is Andy Carpenter – a complex yet charismatic lawyer. David’s latest novel, “Play Dead”, features a Golden Retriever that must take the stand in a murder trial. Rosenfelt and his wife founded the Tara Foundation. Their mission is to rescue homeless, old or sick Golden Retrievers. The Rosenfelts have such a love for Retrievers that many of these rescued dogs, 20-40 at a time, never leave their home!
AF:. Tell us about the main character in your novels, Andy Carpenter?
DR: Andy Carpenter is a Paterson, New Jersey criminal defense attorney who is not that crazy about plying his trade. Having inherited a fortune from his father, he can pick and choose his cases, and only takes on those with personal meaning for him. He’s a smart, insecure, sarcastic, obnoxious guy whose main passions in life are dogs and sports.
AF: Where did you get the concept for Play Dead?
DR: I’m afraid I never can successfully answer the ‘where did you get the idea’ question. The basic premise just seems to come to me, and then I flesh it out as I write the book. In the case of Play Dead, I knew I wanted the book to be about dogs and dog rescue, so I had that as a starting point.
AF: What rescue organization do you champion?
DR: My wife and I founded the Tara Foundation. Tara was our first Golden Retriever. She died of cancer in 1993, and her illness and death was a transforming experience for both my wife and I. A year later we started the Tara Foundation in her honor, and we have rescued more than 4,000 dogs since. We have 27 dogs at our house right now. It’s not quite as chaotic as it sounds. Most of the dogs are old, and they like to sleep most of the day.