Thursday, May 06, 2010
I don't often do reviews that aren't 'genre' as it relates to this blog. But when I do, it's frequently detective fiction that I feature-- specifically books by John Sandford. He's easily my favorite author when it comes to that genre and when I was given the opportunity to be part of a book tour spotlighting the twenty books in Sandford's "Prey" series I jumped on it. If you haven't read Sandford yet, be sure to enter the giveaway at the end of this post-- you won't be disappointed. As part of the book tour, we were asked to fill out questionnaires about the book we chose to review-- neat idea don't you think? The book I selected was the ninth book in the series, Secret Prey. Year published: 1998 Tell us about Lucas Davenport: Lucas is a Minneapolis cop, whose current rank is that of Deputy Chief of the Minneapolis Police Department. He has a well deserved reputation as a tough guy and a tenacious investigator. He's not the stereotypical cop though. He made a bunch of money designing web games, drives a Porsche 911 and loves nice clothes-- but he also plays hockey and doesn't back down from a fight. * What is Lucas doing when he first appears in the book? Set up the scene. Lucas is fighting off a lingering depression that's the result of a break-up with his fiance after another one of his cases spilled over into his personal life. He's called in to investigate the murder of a bank president and begins to feel a flicker of interest in the case-- which helps to fight off the malaise he's been dealing with. * Give us a sense of time and place. The book is current to the time-frame it's set in-- the late 90's. Cell phones are common but you don't have the characters texting each-other. The investigation starts out at a hunting lodge where the murder takes place, but moves back to the Cities pretty quickly. The main suspects are very wealthy bank executives, so the story tends to move from the bank boardroom, Lucas' home, the wealthy neighborhoods of the suspects and the police station. * Lucas’s occupation or professional role? Lucas' title is that of Deputy Chief. He takes lead on any investigations that his boss, Chief Rose Marie Roux, assigns to him. * Lucas’s personal status (single, dating, married): Lucas starts out single, and he's really only interested in being with Weather, the woman he was going to marry. But he does start seeing a female detective he's always had chemistry with. * Lucas Davenport is a known clothes-horse; did you notice any special fashion references? He said that he prefers Italian suits. American suits are utilitarian and British suits aren't quite right-- definitely Italian. Let’s talk about the mystery: * Avoiding spoilers, what was the crime/case being solved? Right in the middle of a big bank merger-- one that could set up certain executives as millionaires and see others unemployed-- the CEO of one of the banks is murdered and the main suspects are the executives in line to take over the bank. * Does the title of your book relate to the crime? Absolutely. As the story evolves it becomes clear that many crimes have been committed surrounding a particular person that have remained secret for years. The sequence of events slowly unfolds and layer after layer they are revealed as the book progresses. Who was your favorite supporting character, good or evil? That's a tough one. This book has a lot of good supporting characters-- one of the things I think Sandford does best actually. Oddly, it's one of the smaller roles (I guess you could call it) that I liked. One of the executives, James T. Bone, whose status as good or evil should remain a mystery, is one I liked. His rapport with Lucas seemed very natural. What was your favorite scene or quote? That's another hard question. I like the small moments, the ones that make a story seem real. Lucas is kind of a flirt, so it's fun when he banters with the women he meets. But he's also a guy's guy, so I also appreciate how Sandford includes the trash talk between him and the other cops. If I had to pick one scene though... I think I'd go with the part where two small-town sheriffs are trying to intimidate Lucas and he goads them into a fight. It's not super important as far as the story goes, but it's set up in such a way that it really shows how Lucas handles himself as a cop and as someone who won't be intimidated. Like I said-- it's the small things. Finally, how do you envision Lucas Davenport? If he were to be portrayed in a movie, what celebrity would play him? It's so hard to put the face I've created in my head to one particular actor. If Clint Eastwood (in his heyday) hadn't already played "Dirty Harry" he would have been a great Lucas Davenport. Now I lean toward Hugh Jackman because Lucas is a big, good looking guy. But Jackman would have to be somewhere between his clean cut look and "Wolverine." Maybe grow his hair out a little bit. If you're interested in checking out the rest of the book tour (and maybe a chance at winning some other titles in Sandford's "Prey" series), here is the book tour schedule. John Sandford and the DAYS OF PREY Tour Schedule Monday, May 3rd: Rules of Prey: Rundpinne Shadow Prey: Boarding in my Forties Tuesday, May 4th: Eyes of Prey: Jenn’s Bookshelves Silent Prey: Chick with Books Wednesday, May 5th: Winter Prey: The Bluestocking Guide Thursday, May 6th: Mind Prey: Jen’s Book Thoughts Sudden Prey: Starting Fresh Friday, May 7th: Secret Prey: Fantasy & SciFi Loving News & Reviews Certain Prey: My Two Blessings Monday, May 10th: Easy Prey: Lesa’s Book Critiques Chosen Prey: Reading with Monie Tuesday, May 11th: Mortal Prey: Musings of a Bookish Kitty Naked Prey: Dan’s Journal Wednesday, May 12th Hidden Prey: Novel Whore Broken Prey: You’ve GOTTA read this! Thursday, May 13th: Invisible Prey: Booktumbling.com Friday, May 14th: Phantom Prey: The Novel Bookworm Monday, May 17th Wicked Prey: A Bookworm’s World Tuesday, May 18th: Storm Prey: Bermuda Onion And, finally. courtesy of Penguin Books, I have a copy of "Secret Prey" to offer for giveaway. Just add your information to the form below to enter (all information is guaranteed confidential and will be discarded once the contest ends) and I will randomly pick a winner by Friday May 28th. No multiple entries please -- all multiple entries will be discarded. Open in the U.S. and Canada. Good luck!