Animals are incredibly smart, so it just makes sense that they make an appearance in crime fiction as side characters. These six books range from light-hearted to deadly serious, and each features a beloved pet or working dog that helps the human characters track down murderers and criminals.
Jess Winslow is a former Marine and current sheriff deputy trainee in Deception Cove, WA. When a body is discovered, Jess is alarmed to find that it's Brock Boyd, a hometown hero who has fallen on hard times. The last person to see Brock alive was in fact Jess's boyfriend, but she can't believe that he would be responsible, not when he's been so kind and understanding of her haunting experiences in Afghanistan with her pit bull service dog, Lucy. But Jess is going to have to face hard truths if she's going to crack this mystery.
Former NYPD detective Tank Rizzo is caught between two mysteries in Payback--how to take down a dirty cop, and the mystery of who killed his brother. Taking down a respected police officer with a high confession record is going to take a lot of skill and careful movements, so Tank turns to a team of people he can rely on, which include a dog named Gus. But this job won't be easy, and Tank finds himself walking a fine line to solve both cases.
Before the story begins, LAPD K-9 officer Scott James's partner Stephanie is killed in a violent attack, and her killer vanished—but not before almost killing him, too. Now he has a new partner: Maggie, a German shepherd and Afghanistan veteran who lost her own handler and also suffers from PTSD. Scott is her last chance, and as they get to know each other and work together, they must find Stephanie's killer and uncover a deeper conspiracy.
Harry Haristeen is the postmistress of Crozet, Virginia and she has a bad habit of reading other people's postcards. She also has a tiger cat and Welsh corgi named Mrs. Murphy and Tucker who look out for her. And when Harry realizes that a number of the town's citizens have died under mysterious circumstances after receiving similar postcards in the mail, she suspects that she might have a lead on a serial killer—and her pets are also on the case, one step ahead of her and determined to see their owner isn't next to die.
Sydney Rose Parnell and her canine partner Clyde are both veterans of Iraq and now work major crimes back at home as special agents of the railroad police. When a young woman is found brutally murdered on the tracks, they're called in to put the case to bed. It should be easy, as the victim's fiancé is the number-one suspect, but Sydney can't help but feel like there's something more to this case. As she and Clyde dig into the mystery, they expose a shocking conspiracy that leads to more deaths, and puts them both directly in danger.
Mattie Cobb and her canine partner Robo are lifelong residents of Timber Creek, CO, a small town that's horrified when a young girl is found dead just outside of town. Mattie is on the case, along with Robo, and soon finds herself seeking the help of a local veterinarian and single father, Cole. The more she looks into the circumstances of the murder, the more she begins to suspect that Cole's daughter is hiding something, and she and her dog are in danger.
Inspector Ashwin Chopra has had a good career as a police inspector in Mumbai, and now he's being forced into retirement. But on the last day of work, two things happen that change his life: He's given a baby elephant, and a boy is discovered, dead. His death is ruled a suicide by drowning, but Ashwin isn't convinced, and he begins his own investigation, aided most unexpectedly by his new pet elephant.