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Bad Blood (Virgil Flowers #4)

4.21  ·  Rating Details ·  19,163 Ratings  ·  948 Reviews
Two bodies in two days. One is murder. The other is suicide. Virgil Flowers never imagined that discovering the connection would lead him into the perverse history of the Minnesota farm community, and almost unimaginable darkness.
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Published September 1st 2011 by Berkley Books (first published September 21st 2010)
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There’s not enough ‘W’s in the world to convey the ‘EWWWWWWWWWW!!’ factor of this book.

In Homestead, Minnesota, a young man just out of high school with a bright future brutally murders a farmer and tries to make it look like an accident. However, his crime is discovered, and he’s found dead in his cell before he can explain why he did it. The boy's death looks fishy, and the chief suspect is a deputy that the new female sheriff just defeated in an election for the job so that’s a political shi
Jean Coldwell
Jul 27, 2016 Jean Coldwell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Let’s get this out of the way right off the bat: Is it possible to review a John Sandford book featuring Virgil Flowers without referring to his Marshall, Minnesota-based investigator as “that f***ing Flowers”? No, it’s not.

Moving right along, then, Bad Blood is the fourth installment in the series that features the blond, truck-driving, boat-hauling, son of a Lutheran minister who works for the Minnesota BCA. When Virgil shows up in the town of Homestead to handle the case of a suspicious death
James Thane
Oct 13, 2011 James Thane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When Bobby Tripp, a popular high school athlete, brutally kills a farmer late one night at a grain mill in rural Minnesota, there seems to be no logical explanation for the crime. Bobby fails in his attempt to disguise the murder as an accident and is arrested. Shortly thereafter, he is found hanging in his cell, an apparent suicide.

Lee Coakley, an attractive divorcee who is also the local sheriff, appeals for help from Virgil Flowers of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. Coakley wan
Karen Hall
Apr 20, 2011 Karen Hall rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Somebody recently asked, “If you could have dinner with any character from fiction, who would it be?” My immediate answer: Virgil Flowers. John Sandford has written a lot of books, and I’ve read most of them. I followed Lucas Davenport religiously through the Prey books, read the standalone novels, and didn’t much care for the Kidd novels. But Virgil Flowers is my guy.

Virgil knows how to get to the bottom of things, and in Bad Blood, the bottom is not only complicated, it’s a long way down. A so
The Pirate Ghost (Formerly known as the Curmudgeon)
Bad Blood (Virgil Flowers #4) by John Sanford

Another fun installment in the Sanford Prey series spin-off about that F…ing Flowers (as they Call him at the BCA). This is vintage Virgil at its best. Flowers style is unusually clear as he works the town, the News outlets and the Sheriff. BCA’s wild woodsy Agent puts his suspicions and sleuthing to good use when a Minnesota Sheriff has a Suspect die in custody and one of her deputies is the prime suspect. Since the Deputy was the former Sheriff, to
Giovanni Gelati
Sep 27, 2010 Giovanni Gelati rated it it was amazing

Right off the bat I want to say that I am a huge fan of John Sandford. I have devoured all 20 of his Prey novels and each of the Virgil Flowers spinoffs. There are three other Virgil Flower novels: Dark of the Moon, Heat Lightening, Rough Country and now Bad Blood. Do you have to read them in order? No. Do you need to read them, yes. They rock. I find it incredibly hard to put any of his novels down once I get on a roll. The book just doesn’t want to leave my hand or my mind. Okay, I guess you h
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
The further adventures of "that fuckin' Flowers." This one takes awhile to heat up, but once they start going after the bad guys it gets pretty exciting. The big showdown and final outcome is sort of like a combination of the Ruby Ridge fiasco and the raid on the FLDS Yearning for Zion compound.
I give Bad Blood 2.5 stars for story, but I rounded up to 3 stars because Sandford writes so well. This one wasn't as much fun as the third installment. The subject matter is very disturbing, all the mor
May 25, 2012 Jim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime, fiction
Dropping a star only because I was uncomfortable with the central plot line - child abuse - and the author's portrayal of it. Sometimes I felt he sailed very close to the edge in his descriptions of what was going on in a vice ring for what was a novel as opposed to a factual account. Some of the words he puts in children's mouths, not to mention the situations he imagines them in, made me squirm a bit. Still, he's not the first to do it and I'm sure he'd argue his story needs to ring true if ...more
Jul 01, 2013 Ethan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A small Minnesota town is shocked when local high school football star, Bobby Tripp, is arrested for the brutal murder of farmer Jacob Flood. Immediately, this opening scene, in which we read the details of Tripp killing Flood, strays from John Sandford's usual practice of hiding the identity of the killer. Knowing Tripp's identity, I was certain that this would be a story that was much different from any of the previous installments in this series. Sure enough, Tripp is found the next day, dead ...more
May 18, 2011 Judith rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: awful
This book makes me wish for a no stars option.

Normally I enjoy this series both for the pace and the plotting. Not this time. The sexual abuse of women and children is ugly, and perhaps Sandford was trying to make that point. I couldn't help thinking that his depiction of sexual abuse of women and children for the purpose of entertainment (and let's not forget profit) was just as ugly. And it was made worse because I was listening to an audiobook and I couldn't skip over the more graphic sectio
Jun 08, 2016 Lynn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I generally like John Sandford's Lucas Davenport books better than his Virgil Flowers books, but this book was a pleasant surprise. Maybe "pleasant" is the wrong word since Flowers is investigating a pseudo-religious cult that engages in child sexual abuse. The plot moves along very quickly, sometimes too quickly. Sometimes it's hard to keep it all straight. There are a lot of characters and suspects to keep track of. But it all comes to a satisfying conclusion.
Maybe it's just me, but it felt li
Aug 19, 2016 Jeff rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-thrillers

This is my first John Sandford and it certainly won't be my last. Virgil Flowers - what a fantastic character - is called in to help with a strange case. A young man murders a farmer and then commits suicide in the police cell after he's arrested. But the female sheriff isn't convinced it's suicide and so calls in Flowers. It's quickly established that the young man was murdered by the deputy who was on duty but then the deputy is murdered!

The resulting investigation
Oct 26, 2015 Jenn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another great book by John Sandford. As much as the Prey series is still my favourite, Flowers is a rogue unto himself. He's a one man army who occasionally gets a few of the crew to help him out. This storyline was a bit on the raunchy side. Cults, incest and kiddie porn are strife in this small town and Flowers will do whatever is needed to save the wee ones, and the cult members, from their terrible fates.
Kathy Davie
Fourth in the Virgil Flowers detective mystery series and revolving around that effin' Flowers, lol. Bad Blood takes place in October in Minnesota.

In 2011, Bad Blood won the ITW Thriller Award for Best Hard Cover Novel. And I completely understand why. I'd give it a "7" if I could.

My Take
Holy cats! H-0-L-Y cats!! This one will have your jaw dropping below the floor! The drama and tension will keep your heart racing as well as your eyes and fingers as they turn pages as fast as possible. Sandford
Though the crimes in this book were particularly unpleasant, Virgil is a great character and I always enjoy his investigative methods. As always with this series, the plot was compelling and the rural Minnesota setting well described. Listened to the audio version which was narrated by Eric Conger who has really improved since the first book and now adds to the experience.
Nov 29, 2010 Emily rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Brandi ;)

I would have given this book a full 5 stars bc in so many ways it was absolutely amazing. John Sandford is an incredible story teller and as always I was sucked in from page 1. However, this book dealt with a topic that was hard to read, regardless of how fabulous the writing. Child abuse. Sexual child abuse. As much as I love reading about the bastards that abuse get what they deserve, I still find it hard to read about them
Oct 03, 2010 Amanda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another F*ckin' Flowers book. He might be topping Davenport as my favorite character...might.

Spoilers ahead:

We start this one off with a young adult murdering another adult. It's all very vague, there's no background or particular reason why this young man, Tripp, committed the murder. While Tripp is in jail, he is murdered. His death is made to look like a suicide by Crocker, one of the cops in charge of the station that night. Then Crocker is murdered, made to look like a suicide.

This trail of
Jul 02, 2013 Larry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Virgil Flowers works for Lucas Davenport, mostly in rural and small town Minnesota. He is interesting and earns his frequently mentioned nickname in every case, though I like Davenport's smart gunfighter cop better. This case resonates like a couple of Donald Harstad's Iowa cop novels in that the downside of rural America can be pretty low. The contrast between appearance and reality can be jarring, especially in this novel. A religious sect is at the heart of the novel, which opens with four ...more
Oct 27, 2015 Steve rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've read this one before, but it's been a little while. Still, I remembered how it ended and who done it. Great book though. If you haven't read John Sandford or read any of the Virgil Flowers series, this isn't a bad one to start with. But do yourself a favor and read them from the beginning. All great books!
Faye Bierbower
Perhaps this was not the best John Sanford novel ... but just as addicting anyway. It was pre-ordered on Dave's kindle, and delivery was on the 24th. I found it that day, stole it, and finished reading it before he even knew it was delivered. bwahaha!
This is not for the faint-hearted. Superbly disturbing and excellently told. Not my first John Sandford novel, but my first Virgil Flowers mystery. It won't be last, I know that. He stays the course when it comes to an investigation. He sort of eases around corners to get the job done and I like how he thinks, but I feel for him on this investigation.
He does meet an intriguing sheriff who works well with him. Virgil can be a bit rough around the edges when it comes to women. He made less than f
Rex Fuller
Oct 04, 2016 Rex Fuller rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A popular rural high school athlete, a good kid, whacks the life out of a local farmer with a T-ball bat and despite faking it as an accident, is arrested. But he’s found hanging in his jail cell the next morning. Then his jailer is found dead in what’s thought to be suicide.

But Virgil finds connections that no one imagined and uncovers a mess of enormous proportions before he is through.

For me and probably anyone who watches forensic investigation shows like CSI, this one suffers from a basic f
Clayton Bye
Jul 23, 2013 Clayton Bye rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
Bad Blood: A Virgil Flowers Novel
John Sanford
Putnum, 2010
Hard Cover
Virgil Flowers

Virgil Flowers, the detective everyone loves but hates, because trouble seems to follow him wherever he goes, has a puzzle on his hands that even he doesn't even like the feel of. But doing what he does best―Virgil finds trouble wherever he goes, along with interesting women and a litany of other characters. This time, however, the trouble has already raised its mighty head. Virgil has 4
Luke Schwindt
Oct 23, 2015 Luke Schwindt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bad Blood, a novel by John Sandford, is the fourth installment of the Virgil Flowers novel series that is suspenseful and mysterious. It is about a murder case in Minnesota. Every word is eerie, and you'll get chills while reading it. Overall, Bad Blood was a good book that kept you on the edge of your seat until the end.
On a Sunday evening in southern Minnesota, a popular and athletic high schooler named Bob Tripp brutally murders an older farmer named Jacob Flood with a baseball bat, when Fl
Apr 08, 2013 Eric_W rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An excellent addition to the Virgil Flowers series, a series I prefer to the Lucas Davenport books which often devolve into psychobabble with Weather and Ellen.

The case begins with the baseball bat head-bashing murder of a local farmer delivering soybeans to the local mill. The killer is a well-liked football star and his actions puzzle the community, but not as much as the string of killings that follow. BCA detective Flowers is asked to help with the investigation by the local newly elected sh
Jan 22, 2015 Angelica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ma
I've got to admit, that fucking Flowers is growing on me.
I thought the first three books in the series were good. Not incredibly great, but well-done efforts that would keep people who like suspense and thrillers entertained. This, however, was better than that, and it kept me turning the pages almost manically.
Sandford seems very keen on building up the tension to release it into one big, guns-blazing, bullets-flying, free-for-all confrontation in the end (not that I'm complaining, but if you d
Investigator Virgil Flowers of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is called in to investigate any possilbe connections between four murders happening to a small community in a short time.

Robert Tripp, an employee at a grain company, killed a local farmer, Jacob Flood. When the sheriff broke Tripp's story and arrested him, he was found murdered in his cell. Then when Virgil went to one of the police officer's homes to question him, the officer, Jim Crocker, was murdered, and made to lo
I always look forward to reading a Virgil Flowers book. I love his sense of humor, his penchant for odd ball t-shirts, the way the other cops razz him, and even his womanizing ways. The only reason I can handle the last is that I know he loves women, all women, but when he is with one, he is only with one, and he is pretty upfront with them about what to expect from him.

The crime in this book is just horrific, it will have you wanting to take a shower every other page, and to be thankful that yo
Mar 05, 2013 Bigsna rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
So here's the thing about a typical "Bestseller" crime / thriller fiction. Its like a booster shot.

The momentum picks up from the fourth page and then you're on one breathless roller coaster ride that you're willing to get off only when its all over.
Every free minute is spent engulfed in a frenzy of back and forth eye ball shifting - like you are watching a ping pong match - its amazing how hooked you can get to a book of this kind.

Obviously something really works here - I finished this book e
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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 ...more
More about John Sandford...

Other Books in the Series

Virgil Flowers (9 books)
  • Dark of the Moon (Virgil Flowers, #1)
  • Heat Lightning (Virgil Flowers, #2)
  • Rough Country (Virgil Flowers, #3)
  • Shock Wave (Virgil Flowers, #5)
  • Mad River (Virgil Flowers, #6)
  • Storm Front  (Virgil Flowers, #7)
  • Deadline (Virgil Flowers, #8)
  • Escape Clause (Virgil Flowers, #9)

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