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Shock Wave (A Virgil Flowers Novel) Mass Market Paperback – October 2, 2012


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Shock Wave (A Virgil Flowers Novel) + Mad River (A Virgil Flowers Novel) + Bad Blood (A Virgil Flowers Novel)
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Product Details

  • Series: A Virgil Flowers Novel (Book 5)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 418 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; Reprint edition (October 2, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425250482
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425250488
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 4.2 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (452 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #61,882 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Once you start Shock Wave, you'll read it straight through, quickly, compulsively, happy the whole time to be in such good hands.”--The Washington Post

“Wry humor, a fully realized lead, and tense atmospherics…one of his best outings to date.”--Publishers Weekly
 
“The Flowers series is…formed from the same elements that make the Davenport books such a joy to read: sharp characterization, witty dialogue and, at heart, a gritty, often puzzling mystery. If Shock Wave is any indication, Flowers has a better than even chance of equaling if not surpassing Davenport in the hearts and minds of Sandford’s legion of readers.”--Bookreporter.com




About the Author

John Sandford is the pseudonym of the Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist John Camp. He is the author of the Prey novels, the Kidd novels, the Virgil Flowers novels, The Night Crew, and Dead Watch.

More About the Author

John Sandford was born John Camp on February 23, 1944, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He attended the public schools in Cedar Rapids, graduating from Washington High School in 1962. He then spent four years at the University of Iowa, graduating with a bachelor's degree in American Studies in 1966. In 1966, he married Susan Lee Jones of Cedar Rapids, a fellow student at the University of Iowa. He was in the U.S. Army from 1966-68, worked as a reporter for the Cape Girardeau Southeast Missourian from 1968-1970, and went back to the University of Iowa from 1970-1971, where he received a master's degree in journalism. He was a reporter for The Miami Herald from 1971-78, and then a reporter for the St. Paul Pioneer-Press from 1978-1990; in 1980, he was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize, and he won the Pulitzer in 1986 for a series of stories about a midwestern farm crisis. From 1990 to the present he has written thriller novels. He's also the author of two non-fiction books, one on plastic surgery and one on art. He is the principal financial backer of a major archaeological project in the Jordan Valley of Israel, with a website at www.rehov.org. In addition to archaeology, he is deeply interested in art (painting) and photography. He both hunts and fishes. He has two children, Roswell and Emily, and one grandson, Benjamin. His wife, Susan, died of metastasized breast cancer in May, 2007, and is greatly missed.

Customer Reviews

Plotting and character development are very engaging.
John W. Michael
The storyline moves at a brisk pace with enough action and intrigue to keep you reading and turning the pages.
J. Stroh
I love John Sandford's books whethere about Lucas Davenport or Virgil Flowers.
Amelia Earhardt

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

209 of 221 people found the following review helpful By Jerry Bull on October 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover
We are big fans of Sandford, having read every single one of his Kidd, Lucas Davenport, and Virgil Flowers novels. These latter stories are similar to, but usually less violent than, the "Prey" novels, as Virgil is inclined to let the "regular" cops do most of the dirty work while he contemplates things quietly and often draws clever conclusions from just talking to people.

"Shock Wave" is aptly named, as it involves a plot about a very busy bomber who has it in for "Pye-Mart", obviously a Walmart knockoff, that is in the early construction phase in Butternut Falls (MN), and expected to destroy the local merchants and pollute the river with runoff, etc., etc. While that's not exactly an original premise, the one or two bombings per day keep everyone hopping to an insane degree, with a similar increase in suspense to the reader. Not surprisingly, there appears to have been illegal payoffs to local politicos to make the approval for the new megastore a reality; and while he's trying to discover the identity of the bomber, Virgil uncovers those crimes as well, nicely cleaning up the local scene. Meanwhile, Virgil seems to be telephonically breaking up with his new sheriff sweetheart, which slows down his tendency to womanize key characters, but that only added to the "off-screen" fun.

We don't award many books all five stars, but this one seems quite deserving -- a terrific protagonist in an exciting and suspenseful plot combine for a thrill-charged entertaining novel -- highly recommended!
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38 of 38 people found the following review helpful By CGP on October 11, 2011
Format: Hardcover
As I say in my Amazon.ca review, unlike many authors of roughly his generation, John Sanford isn't experimenting with new--and usually unsuccessful--formats, characters, or styles. Shock Wave is another Virgil Flowers success that I couldn't put down. Waited weeks for the book and finished it in a day. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Good plot, credible characters, nice touches of humor, and a satisfying ending you don't quite see coming. Very much Sandford at his reliable best.
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72 of 81 people found the following review helpful By Loyd Blankenship on October 6, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
By the time they get to their 25th book in a setting (these are in the same world as his Prey books), most authors are just mailing it in (see Griffin, Clancy). Sandford continues to put out exciting, well-plotted books that make you laugh out loud at times ("I have varied interests. And insomnia."). Definitely worth a read!
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Lost In Kansas VINE VOICE on October 13, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
On my dining room table are about 3 or 4 books that I was planning on reading, but when this came in I dropped everything including the book I was reading to read this one. There are about 3 or 4 authors who I read whatever they write immediately. Sandford is my number one. No matter whether it is Davenport, Kidd,or Flowers you get quality. While Davenport is edgy and violent, Flowers is the layed back good ole boy next door that makes you feel comfortable. Sandford uses his two track story line here, as he does in his other novels. One track is Flowers working to solve the crime and the other track is the criminal thinking how to outwit Flowers. The reader gets to see both tracks move along till they merge into one final and violent confrontation. Against the rural Minnesota back ground Flowers chases a serial bomber, common man vs. big business or so it seems. Throw in corupt city officals and Flowers has his hands full. This Flowers' novel is like wading into a country creek and the current picks you up and you begin to float,slowly at first,twisting, winding, and finally hitting rapids. Nothing seems slow and before you know it you are at the end. That is how you know your are in the hands of professional. This time Sandford changes things at the end by teasing the reader with the next story in the Flowers series.
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72 of 87 people found the following review helpful By Kevin T on October 4, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I like this series and I like the protagonist. If you enjoyed Sanford's other stuff like Buried Prey or my new favorite Chaos and Kingdom you will love "Shock Wave".

Just when other authors start to wallow in their success-driven mediocrity, John Sanford is producing his best work yet. This latest edition to the Virgil Flowers series (the spin off of the Prey series) is one of his best. This series is clever where other writers' stuff can be commercial; compelling when other books can be gratuitous; and entertaining when others can be cheesy.

In this novel, the cerebral cop Flowers tackles a dastardly bomber who has it out for Pye-Mart stores (big box retailers that are clearly modeled after the Waltons' gift to the world). But is that corporate terrorist just your typical tree-hugger mad about the pollutants in his pristine Minnesota wilderness or is do the bombings have to do with dirty politicians?
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By mike on November 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I know of no other mystery/thriller author who has written more consistently excellent books than John Sandford. Shock Wave is yet another winner. Sandford created one of my favorite characters in the genre, Lucas Davenport, and the star of this book, Virgil Flowers, is rapidly moving up the list.

As in all Sandford's books, the plot is excellent, the police investigative work rings true, the dialogue is great, and the characters are very believable. The plot was a real head-scratcher, but the conclusion worked and made sense.

All-in-all, this is another fine addition to the roster of excellent novels by Sandford. If you're already a fan or new to this author, you'll love it.
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