Creator / John Sandford

John Sandford is the pen name of John Camp, Pullitzer-winning reporter, who decided to branch out into crime novels. Unusually, he had two debut novels, The Fool's Run featuring Kidd, a computer hacker, and Rules of Prey featuring Lucas Davenport, a hard-nosed detective. To avoid the gaffe of having two debut novels and to appease the two separate publishers he'd sold the stories to, he published Rules of Prey under a pen name of John Sandford and The Fool's Run under John Camp, his real name. Currently, all of his books are released under his pen name. He has a website run by his son which includes a substantial amount of reference material on what went into individual stories and how they evolved.

His fiction works include:

The Prey Series featuring Lucas Davenport

  • Rules of Prey
  • Shadow Prey
  • Eyes of Prey
  • Silent Prey
  • Winter Prey
  • Night Prey
  • Mind Prey
  • Sudden Prey
  • Secret Prey
  • Certain Prey
  • Easy Prey
  • Chosen Prey
  • Mortal Prey
  • Naked Prey
  • Hidden Prey
  • Broken Prey
  • Invisible Prey
  • Phantom Prey
  • Wicked Prey
  • Storm Prey
  • Buried Prey
  • Stolen Prey
  • Silken Prey

The Kidd Series featuring Kidd

  • The Fool's Run
  • The Empress File
  • The Devil's Code
  • The Hanged Man's Song

The Virgil Flowers Series featuring Virgil Flowers

  • Dark of the Moon
  • Heat Lightning
  • Rough Country
  • Bad Blood
  • Shock Wave
  • Mad River
  • Storm Front

Standalone books

  • The Night Crew
  • Dead Watch

Tropes Associated with John Sandford

  • Canada, Eh?: Virgil, as a Minnesotan, has less than kind words to say about his Northern neighbor. As John Sandford said about Canada's treatment in the novels:
    John Sandford: "By picturing Canada as a land of lowlifes, dopers, gunmen, sexual deviants, desperate men, violent women, bad musicians, etc. especially bad musicians Im simply trying to provide a sense of the true excitement of the place."
  • Continuity Drift: In one of the more recent Davenport novels, which is mostly a prequel, Sloane's first name is revealed, and it's made clear that Lucas has known it for the entire series, which does not give with the Last Name Basis used earlier in the books.
  • Cowboy Cop: Lucas Davenport starts off as one of these, but after a few books, a combination of Deconstruction and Character Development starts to broaden him out.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Almost everyone, but particularly notable in the Kidd books, which are narrated by Kidd in first person.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Every volume of the Davenport series has the word Prey in it; the volumes of the Kidd series have Tarot Motifs in their titles.
  • Jurisdiction Friction: In their BCA days, both Davenport and Flowers occasionally encounter this, with Mad River being the worst case.
  • Last Name Basis: Detective Sloan from the Davenport series.
    Davenport: What is Sloan's first name, anyway?
    Sloan's Wife: I never asked.
  • Line-of-Sight Name: A major character in the Davenport novels is named Del Capslock.
  • Minnesota Nice: Played with. Some characters display the trope, and others play up to it to mess with out of state visitors.
  • Most Writers Are Writers: Largely averted. Flowers is the only published author in the series, although Davenport is a game designer, which is similar in some ways.
  • Phrase Catcher: No matter how they meet him, sooner or later everyone calls Virgil Flowers "that fuckin' Flowers". Usually sooner.
  • Twin Cities: the setting of almost all Sandford's novels - and the ones set elsewhere usually feature characters from there prominently.
  • The Verse: The Kidd, Davenport and Flowers novels all take place in the same universe - notably, all three characters appear in Invisible Prey.
  • World of Snark: St Paul/Minneapolis, apparently.