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Bar News - January 15, 2014

Local Settings Enhance Mystery Novels by NH Lawyers

A Wolfeboro judge and a trial lawyer – a private pilot with extensive experience in aviation law – both recently published debut novels, following the dictum of “write what you know.”

Like his fictional Judge Harry Warren, Robert Varney is also a judge, having served for almost 40 years in the Carroll County District and Circuit Courts; this, in addition to maintaining his full-time legal practice as a partner at Walker and Varney of Wolfeboro from 1973 to 2011. Varney’s novel, Do Unto Others, published last year, is a murder mystery set in rural New Hampshire. Kirkus Reviews recently praised the novel’s “richness of character and dialogue,” adding that, “The most striking success is the creation of Harry Warren, a flawed man who is neither as flawed nor as stealthy as he thinks.”

Similarly, Garry Lane, of Ransmeier & Spellman, uses decades of experience as a pilot and as an attorney who has represented aircraft manufacturers, pilots, and others in aviation-related litigation, to craft scenes of aircraft in trouble with harrowing detail in The Brutus Conspiracy. There’s also air crash investigation details, courtroom drama, ethical challenges, romance, and national political intrigue.

One of a dozen positive reviews on, a reader wrote: “The unpredictable twists and turns keep you guessing to the very end.”

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