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Issue: Spring 2014

Deadline (October 2014) book review

Virgil's Dog Days

Virgil drags his boat into a new adventure. This time the theft of local dogs in Trippton has Virgil going to help out old friend and fishing buddy Johnson Johnson.

But there's a criminal underbelly to Trippton and Virgil is soon up to his neck in DEA agents, rednecks and corrupt officials.

Virgil F@#$ing Flowers is one of the great unsung heroes of fiction. Unpreposing and self-deprecating in his band t-shirts and cowboy boots, Virgil is smart, generous and courageous. He works without a partner, but gathers his resources from the locals he meets. He is willing to take a chance at looking foolish to find a solution, and some of his strategies are unique.

book cover, Deadline, by John Sandford;

Deadline by John Sandford (October 2014), kindle/ h/c, 389p, Putnam Adult

John Sandford has a delightful writing style -- it's deceptively simple with clear prose and a wry insight into human relationships as well as the motivations of 'bad people'.

Reading Sandford is an excellent palate-cleaner after reading writers who take themselves and their prose too seriously, or who write with no hope for the human condition. In a Sandford novel we know that no matter how deeply humans will sink in their inhumanity to other humans (and animals), that there are heroes who are willing to work largely unsung to fight the good fight.

Although part of a series, and the larger Lucas Davenport world, this book can be read as a standalone novel, but seriously, why stop at one?

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Ali Kayn
Search Festivale for more work by this John Sandford.

See also:
Virgil Flowers reading order and synopses
Lucas Davenport reading order and synopses
Kidd and LuEllen reading order and synopses