Dead Watch
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Dead Watch

3.82 of 5 stars 3.82  ·  rating details  ·  4,112 ratings  ·  210 reviews
Early morning, Virginia, and a woman is on the run. Her husband, a former U.S. Senator, has been missing for days. Kidnapped? Murdered? She doesn't know, but she thinks she knows who's involved, and why. And that she's next.

Hours later in Washington, D.C., a cell phone rings. The White House chief of staff needs Jacob Winter now. His chief investigator and an Army Intellig...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published April 24th 2007 by Berkley (first published January 1st 2006)
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Listened to this as an audiobook. Read by a favorite: Richard Ferrone who seems to make a specialty of John Sandford's books.

A refreshing change from the increasingly redundant Lucas Davenport series. In this case we follow Jacob, "Jake," Winter, a "forensic bureaucracy specialist." He works for the president's chief of staff as a fixer who uses his knowledge of the bureaucracy to solve problems. He has one "Rule": who benefits? Answer that question and most every problem becomes easily solvable...more
A very intriguing from the mind and pen of John Sandford. A former Senator disappears mysteriously and it is of such political importance a researcher who does special projects for the government is asked to find the Senator. Our researchers name is Jacob Winter, he begins to stir up problems for all culpable and soon things begin to happen. The Senator turns up dead, and the details of his death will get your mind to work. The investigation leads to the Governor of Virginia and his watchmen, in...more
It was a decent story, although I don’t see a series out of it, like all his other characters become part of. Basically, a former Republican senator is aware of some dirt on the Democrat administration in the White House. In the state of Virginia, the Democrat governor of VA wants a place in the national administration and is willing to bend the rules to get it. In the middle is a former Army Intel guy who is hired by the White House to find out what the hell is going on. The wife of the senator...more
Out of all the John Sandford novels I've read, DEAD WATCH is my favorite. It reminded me of a cross between two great movies I saw earlier this year: JACK REACHER and BROKEN CITY. John Sandford is at his peak here, both in terms of writing and plotting. DEAD WATCH is filled with twists, memorable characters, and down-'n-dirty action. It's a political thriller, and thankfully a relatively non-partisan one. Too bad this book didn't get more traction with the general public, because I, for one, wou...more
Jun 18, 2007 Dana rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Bus Passengers
I feel compelled to give this one a moderately good review, if only because I recently found myself defending popular literature to a literary (and musical) fascist many times more severe and uncompromising than myself.

Defining art is difficult. "I know it when I see it" is vastly unsatisfying, but may be the best I can come up with. Or that anyone can come up with. In any event, I have long been a connoisseur of what I like to call grocery store novels, and Dead Watch measured up well enough t...more
Markirah Shaw
If I hadn't looked at the author bio on the inside back cover, I never would have guessed this novel was written by a Pulitzer-prize winning journalist because the story was told in a shallow, ill-paced fashion.

Then again, it really did have all the hallmarks of a piece of journalism: objective descriptions of settings and characters - but to the point that the reader can't invest in the story arcs and therefore can't really care about the characters; a blunt and minimal narrative - which isn't...more
Not my favourite Sanford, by any means, but this is a question of personal taste. The storyline, in itself, is a gripping, fast paced and well recounted tale. So what didn't I like? I did not like the main character, on Jake Winter. He was a snivelling combination of outrageous and conflicting personality and character traits. A sexually obsessed, Afghan war 'hero' with a limp from the over used roadside bomb blast victim model who walks with difficulty using a cane yet nonetheless offers to kic...more
Louie Flann
Not the usual cast of characters. In this one, the hero is a Washington consultant who is sent in to solve sticky problems.

This sticky problem was a missing person. It was thought he was abducted by a state governor who founded a large group of volunteers who were considered by most to be almost-out-of-control thugs—WWII style.

One thing missing from this good mystery was Sandford’s humor. His regular players always bust me up with antics and commentaries on their Minnesota lives.
The plot evol...more
Standalone, mostly political, thriller from crime-meister Sandford…

We are big Sandford fans and thought we had read his every novel – until we discovered this standalone thriller he authored in 2007. Unlike his Davenport and Flowers crime thrillers, “Dead Watch” is more of a political thriller in the manner of David Baldacci. In the plot, a Senator is missing; and Jake Winter, an ex-military troubleshooter on-call, is brought in to find him. That discovery, as well as other intriguing facts abou...more
Bruce Snell
This stand-alone book from John Sandford deserves 3.5 stars, but that is not one of the choices available so it gets 3. This is a political thriller with Jacob Winter in the lead role. Jake is a political "fixer" - a man who can get things done. He is called in by the President's office to head up an unofficial investigation into the kidnapping of a political opponent - Lincoln Bowe - who disappeared a few days earlier. Jake's orders are to get something done - get the FBI working, talk to peopl...more
Well, I had a tough time deciding the number of stars I wanted to award this book. I have read almost all of the Sandford books* and I was glad to see that he had tackled a new protagonist. And, I LIKED Jake Winter. Actually, I think that Sandford does a good job of making his characters believeable - he just doesn't fill all of them out enough to make them MEMORABLE. But maybe this is just a personal problem. More than 3 names, I start to graze & glaze! Seriously, I believe that I simply pr...more
3.5 This was an interesting political mystery that included murder, mayhem, and a questionably ethical protagonist, Jake Winter. Jake's smart, knows his way around DC, and works for the White House - principally the President's Chief of Staff. It always pisses me off (but never surprises me) to hear of all the shenanigans that happen on the taxpayer's dime and this one certainly was no exception. It read fast, and I was happy to see the touches of Virgil Flowers that Sandford gave Jake. I guess...more
Mike Kennedy
Decided to go back and read one of the few Sanford novels I haven't read yet. Dead Watch was a pretty good read. It was defiantly outside of Sanford's normal locale. All of his other novels are based in Minnesota, but this one is based in Washington DC and the East Coast. Jacob Winter is the main character in the book. He is a former intelligence officer in the army who was permanently injured by a bomb. He now does some consulting for the white house. I though this was a pretty good read overal...more
One of Sandford's early books, with different characters any of the other series' he writes. A senator is killed and the political ramifications are complicated. So are the circumstances surrounding the killing. Jake, a history professor and political troubleshooter for the President's chief of staff, is asked to unsnarl it all. Political infighting, romance, and more violence ensue.
This is my first book by John SAndford and I did like it. The story was quite exciting as I had no idea where the story was leading to and I like that in a book.
Whether those political jousts are truthfull I can't say but that doesn't really matter to me.
I liked the story and am interested in more books by Sandford.

Dit is mijn eerste boek van John Sandford en ik vond het zeker de moeite waard. Ik vond het heel spannend, het was voor mij niet duidelijk waar het verhaal naartoe zou gaan en dat vin...more
Warren Olson
I'm a Sandford fan ; probably like the Virgil Flowers and Kidd novels a little more than the Prey series ; This was a good read in that it introduced new characters and also plenty of the usual great Sandford plot twists along the way. An easy and entertaining read great for a wet weekend !
Amanda Patterson
Lincoln Bowe, a controversial Republican ex-senator, disappears. The White House assigns Jacob Winter, a senior operative to the case as Bowe went missing after publically attacking his rival, Arlo Goodman. Goodman also heads a militia group known as the Watchmen.
Bowe’s burnt, headless corpse is found and Winter is under pressure to discover the killers. Along with Madison Bowes, the beautiful but untrustworthy widow, Winter discovers that Bowe’s death may be an elaborate staging of events desig...more
I enjoyed reading this novel, but I don't know why. The story is about an army intelligence veteran who solves a crime committed by members of the government, against members of the government. So the story has nothing to do with me; it's about people in Washington, DC, lawyers, politicians, rich, successful people, and tough, military guys with guns and really nice clothes, and hunting lodges in the woods. What does any of this have to do with real life? Nothing at all, that I can see. John San...more
This book had a similar plotting style to many other Sandford books, but the characters were shallow and uninteresting. The magic that keeps me reading all the Prey books, and the books about Virgil Flowers, is that I really really like Davenport and Flowers (and their loyal sidekicks, bosses, lovers, ex-lovers, etc). They live and grow and change from book to book. They start and stop relationships, they are assigned to different projects, with different priorities. These factors keep these boo...more
I am a huge fan of John Sandford. Started with the Lucas Davenport series set in Minnesota. This is proving good, too.

I like this book. I have focussed on the Lucas Davenport series so venturing into this new character, Jake Winter, was almost feeling like betrayal. But Sandford did a good job setting up this lead character and the story (hopefully, not the sort of thing that happens often in Washington). I thought he too easily got involved with the female character but the story held my intere...more
John Foxjohn
I am a huge Sanford fan and can't tell you how many times I have read all of the Prey novels. I've also read all of the Kidd novels, too. What I didn't expect: I found Dead Watch to be equal or better than quite a few of the others.

In Dead Watch, Sanford weaved fantastic characters through a revolving plot that will keep you up reading.

I highly recommend this book.
Lydia Lewis
I love John Sandford, but I like Lucas Davenport and Virgil Flowers better. Probably because I don't like politics much!
This book wasn't Davenport or Kidd but Jake Winter is a pretty good character. I hope this is a new series for Sandford but not sure. I really like the ideas and the politics. I enjoyed the plot twists and how it unfolded. I agree with some of the other reviewers as far as the romantic angle needed some work. I thought that Sandford laid some nice groundwork for a future Winter series. I would definitely recommend this book to Sandford fans as long as they understand this character isn't as full...more
(entered this years after reading; read this before Goodreads)

Probably enjoyed it.

Aurora library.
Pleasant enough read. Jake Winter is a "problem solver" for the executive branch. Jake is asked to find a former US Senator who has gone missing, mix in a bunch of former soldiers in a law and order group, a corrupt governor, a sexy wife of said ex-senator and a gay lover or two and the plot gets thicker. Wouldn't mind seeing another book using Jake Winter to see how he fairs as a developing character. Sandford couldn't resist using his tired line, I was so disappointed to see "It's that F**k**g...more
This is a political thriller. Set in DC, with Jacob Winter as the main character, the story is about an investigation into the disappearance of a missing ex-senator, Lincoln Bowes. The investigator, Jake Winter is a "problem solver" for the top level of U.S. politicians. Jake is asked to find a former US Senator who has gone missing.

Winter is a likeable, smart character with a very positive, can-do attitude.

This book was a gift and not one I would normally pick up. I had difficulty with the pol...more
Judith Wrinkle
Good as always, but again............different. A lot about government and corruption. Guess I feel I am living that, so not too surprised.
This is (I believe) a stand alone book from Sandford - not part of a series. It's not a police/detective procedural, but still a good whodunnit. I prefer the Lucas Davenport and Virgil Flowers series; this one had several incidents of the main character "coming to the right conclusion" but no explanation of how. No thought process that would leave me to believe that A must precede B. Too many coincidences within the story as well. Still, a good read overall, and a fast one. I'd rate this one at...more
I eagerly read John Sanford's Lucas Davenport novels, which are set in Minnesota. But this book is set primarily in the greater Washington, DC area, and features a new lead character, Jacob Winter, who specializes in what he thinks of as forensic bureaucracy. As an organizational behaviorist, I love the concept. A senator has gone missing, and Winter is hired by the White House to find out what's happened. The plot is fairly far-fetched, I hope, but I did enjoy the attempt to portray how large o...more
an excellent standalone Sandford mystery
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What's The Name o...: Agent limps and works for President's Chief=of=Staff [s] 6 188 Jan 04, 2014 10:03AM  
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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 th...more
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