I’m not often a mystery/thriller type of reader but I managed to get seven book report credits out of twelve required by my 11th grade English teacher for reading The Complete Sherlock Holmes. Still later, writers like P.D. James, John le Carre, Tony Hillerman, Patricia Cornwell, Scott Turnow and John Grisham caught my eye. So there I was in a small waiting room at Mayo Clinic waiting for my wife on the 2nd day of three days of testing, apparently looking really bored. A kind secretary noticed and offered access to the departments lost and found collection of mysteries This was a first time read of John Sanford. A Pulitzer prize winning journalist and highly successful author of mysteries. His stories are often placed in a Minnesota setting. Hey! I live in Minnesota and frequently pick out books with settings I’m familiar with. Set it in Paris (I’ve been there twice) and if the murder takes place on the steps of the Opera, I’ve been there chaperoning a class of high school seniors eating a bag lunch. I can still see it clearly….
Which brings me to John Sanford’s Storm Front.When John Sandford is traveling around Minnesota, he's got one thing on his mind: Is this a good place for a crime? A veteran thriller writer with more than 40 novels to his name, Sandford has staged crime scenes all across the state, from the North Woods to the Mall of America.
In this one an ancient relic in unearthed during an archaeological dig. A Minnesota college professor who finds it, returns it to the Gopher State naturally and is followed by two conflicting Israelis ( a Mossad agent and a member of the agency responsible for protecting ancient relics, along with several Hezbollah terrorists, a Turk and several thieves who want to make a killing moneywise or otherwise. The relic could change the world's history as we know it. Virgil Flowers, southern agent of the Minnesota BCA (Bureau of Criminal Apprehension) is put in charge.
This is good stuff. Stephen King describes it as unapologetic guy fiction. Stop! There is such a thing as Chick Flicks and I've be reading a lot of Victorian and Jane Austin lately so lets all keep and open mind. It's not smarmy. It's gritty but not in the category of a President claiming "locker talk" to justify grabbing women's privates because he is rich and famous. I enjoyed the book and will likely find some more by Sanford at our local library....:)
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