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Field of Prey (Lucas Davenport #24)

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  17,644 Ratings  ·  1,481 Reviews
The night after the fourth of July, Layton Carlson Jr., of Red Wing, Minnesota, finally got lucky. And unlucky.

He’d picked the perfect spot to lose his virginity to his girlfriend, an abandoned farmyard in the middle of cornfields: nice, private, and quiet. The only problem was . . . something smelled bad—like, really bad. He mentioned it to a county deputy he knew, and w
Hardcover, 392 pages
Published May 6th 2014 by G.P. Putnam's Sons
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Celty's_heart I just started Field of Prey without having read any of the other books in the series. It's an easy read, the story is laid out well and the…moreI just started Field of Prey without having read any of the other books in the series. It's an easy read, the story is laid out well and the characters are developed enough so that you can understand their personalities.(less)

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The only thing better than a new John Sandford book is a FREE John Sandford book. Thanks Goodreads giveaways!

A serial killer has been using an old well in a remote field to dump the bodies of women he has abducted over the years, and when it’s discovered the police find body parts from over 20 corpses* that have turned into what one cop describes as ‘bean soup’. The media hysteria is instant and rabid over what they dub The Black Hole Murders so the political pressure being put on the police and
James Thane
Two high school kids are parked out in a field near Redwing, Minnesota, enjoying an evening of youthful passion, when they notice a very bad smell coming from somewhere nearby. The boy, being the responsible sort, tells a deputy sheriff and the next day he and the deputy go back to the spot and discover a concealed cistern. When they pry the cover off, they discover that the cistern is filled with decaying female bodies.

The local authorities begin pulling the bodies from the cistern and quickly
Well, this review has me more conflicted than would be usual for a John Sandford book. As usual, it is well written with a complex, multifaceted plot. As usual, there is major crime, and it is especially brutal. And this time it also involves old crimes and heavily misogynistic people and crimes. I found it difficult to deal with at times though I have probably read similar material by Sandford or others in the past. (This is not to say that Sandford is misogynistic, no. It is the criminals he h ...more
Diane S ☔
May 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
Can't believe this is number 24, in the Davenport series. I have been reading Sandford for a long, long time. He is my go to author of crime, the author that for me keeps up the high quality of his fiction, regardless of how many he has written.

In this one we know, or do we, the perpetrators of the crime. Multiple bodies of women found in an old cistern, and one way or another Lucas is drawn into the hunt. I usually am not a big fan of stories that start out with a known killer or killers, but
Andrew Smith
May 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
I love the Prey series. Lucas Davenport is the coolest crime stopper in America, the one we'd all want to be (well, the one I'd like to be, anyway). These are brilliant suspense thrillers - we know who dunnit and we know Lucas will get them in the end - and the trick Sandford always pulls of superbly is to keep us engaged in the chase, wondering how much havoc will be wreaked in the meantime.

This is probably not the best book in the series, but it's still good. There's a bit of me that thinks L
Albert Riehle
May 06, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of the things that I appreciate about John Sandford's writing, both in his Prey Series and the interconnected Flowers Series is that his protagonists don't always connect the dots, immediately. In a lot of other books, in this genre, as soon as the detective gets the relevant facts and clues, everything lines up, the tumblers click, the light goes on and Eureka! he solves the crime and saves the day. Sandford's protagonists usually have their own eureka moment, but they are usually in posses ...more
A really satisfying police procedural, okay to start without reading others in the long series. As typical we are treated to vignettes of the twisted life of the bad guy, in this case a serial rapist/killer, so it’s not a whodunit but a pressure-cooker tale on how to find and stop him.

I’ve only read 9 of the 24 of the line of “Prey” books featuring Lucas Davenport of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (which he is wont to say is superior to the FBI since the title promises more than
Jun 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
2nd reading - Nicely written mystery, with a search for a killer of young women, whose bodies are thrown into a remote farm cistern over the course of 20 years. A huge investigation centering around 3 small Minnesota towns, with suspicious glances at many local figures.

1st reading - The latest Davenport story and it was awesome. Quite the kink about 2/3 of the way in - didn't see that coming. Several regular characters have major changes. Hope to see more of Catrin if she joins the BCA.
Alex is The Romance Fox
Another great addition to the Davenport Series, which I have been reading for years...can't believe this is book #24.

I have watched Lucas Davenport fighting crime for a long time....he's now "grown" up...his daughter is about to enter college, he's still the cool guy with the cool wardrobe and car and still putting the bad guys behind bars.

It's interesting watching him putting the puzzles together and just love the way he interacts with the secondary characters in the series.

Great storyline and
May 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bought as a birthday present to myself, I read this in about 10 great hours. Lucas - I missed you! And Weather and Letty and Del too.

I love the mix of personal and professional life in this series yet with so much going on, it is not over told or over dramatized. The side stories are interesting and play well into the overall plot. The secondary characters are appropriately lovable and hated.

Did not see the crazy part coming so that was a pleasant surprise. I actually had to go back and read a
May 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I love these books. I love these books so much I'm considering blowing off all the books I have started reading and just going back to Rules of Prey and start the whole series over again. Honestly, they really do just get better and better. After Stolen Prey and Letty's amazing freaking amazing-ness (there's really no words for how much I love Letty) and then the appearance of Kidd & Lauren in Silken Prey I really didn't imagine that things would get even better, but they did.

Here's why John
Dan Biermeier
Aug 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Well dressed and fast driving Lucas Davenport is at it again...or still. I'm not much for clothes or cars but do enjoy a cop (guy or gal) that effectively deals with assholes and murderers or; as is the case more often than not serial killers.

Again a killer or killers preying on pretty young ladies. This cistern is not your grandfathers cistern. but, murders and mayhem and cat and mouse and a bit of Lucas's family form the tale.

A few side nods to Del and that F**king Flowers, just so you know th
May 18, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
John Sandford and his prey series have been a favorite of mine since the very first book. Before I started this book I read some of the recent reviews and was hoping I would like it more than most of the other readers did but I have to agree that this was not his best writing. I am disappointed but I'm certainly not giving up on him. The book wasn't all bad, it just could have been much better.
Jon Kurtz
Jul 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Hard to believe this is the twenty-fourth installment in this successful series of novels by John Sandford. Over the years, I've read most, if not all, of Mr. Sandford's works. He continues with his successful formula: a flawed protagonist; a Looney Tunes antagonist; interesting support players; a hint of sexual tension; and short sub-chapters.

In this tale, a body dump-site is discovered on an abandoned farm in rural Minnesota. A long-forgotten cistern holds the remains of more than twenty bodi
Mike Kennedy
Jan 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
If I could give this book a rating of more than five, I would. First off, full disclosure, I did win this book through Goodread's First Reads Program. After reading Sandford's last Davenport novel, Silken Prey, I didn't think he could top it. I was proven wrong. I read a third of the book the first night I got it. The serial killers are pure evil and really draw you in. I am not sure where Sandford came up with premise for disposing of the bodies, but it is sickening and makes you cheer for Luca ...more
Thomas Edmund
May 09, 2014 rated it it was ok
the beginning few chapters of FoP begin in a somewhat rudimentary fashion. We meet the villain, discover the bodies, and initially the police bicker over jurisdiction and worry about media coverage. In short the book begins so drenched in formula even for a formula soaked genre that I almost gave up.

Luckily for me there was a bonus - don't want to spoil, I will simply say I was surprised by some early scenes, that pulled me out of my cynicism and made me take notice.

Unfortunately there was reall
Jun 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crime-thrillers
Field of Prey – Simply Brilliant

Field of Prey the twenty-fourth in the Lucas Davenport series, is actually my first foray and one that I enjoyed and wondering why it has only taking me twenty-five years to discover this wonderful crime series. Stephen King is correct when he says John Sandford is a great summer read and a great novelist and the great thing about this book it might be the twenty-fourth but can still be read without having read his previous outings.

I was impressed with all the tw
Gerry Bartlett
May 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: contemporary, mystery
Why do I love John Sandford's books so much? Well, first his characters just jump off the page. Lucas Davenport is his central character and we've known him for 24 books now. Yes, that many. The banter between him and and his fellow detectives still makes me laugh. And this in the middle of solving a horrendous mystery. This time it's the Black Hole killer. Bodies are found in a cistern, that's an abandoned well in the middle of nowhere. It's a great place for two teenagers to get their grove on ...more
Mike French
Sep 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
If I was able to,I would give this book SIX stars. I am a big fan of John Sandford and Field of Prey is one of his best books!! If you haven't already read this book,get it ASAP. You will not be disappointed,
Kathy Davie
Sep 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Twenty-fourth in the Lucas Davenport detective mystery series and revolving around Lucas, a roving investigator handling sensitive cases. Based in Minneapolis/St. Paul and roaming all over.

My Take
Oh, lordy…*laughing*…Sandford starts out at one end and slides off to the other with the only person who didn't know Layton was going to get laid, Layton himself. Too funny. Thankfully, Sandford does drop in relief moments to offset all the horror of this partnership.

Explaining the name to the FBI,


Mal Warwick
May 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
Lucas Davenport’s talented investigative crew at the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (“others investigate bad guys, we apprehend them”) is dispersed throughout the country when all hell breaks loose with the discovery of a long-forgotten cistern containing the bones of more than a dozen murder victims. As the Bureau’s preeminent investigator, Lucas is drawn into the case despite his involvement in getting to the bottom of the high-profile disappearance of a Ponzi scheme operator and mi ...more
4+ stars

Reading the new Lucas Davenport novel is like coming home. That is one thing you can always count on. When Sandford writes Davenport, he never misses. That is safe to say after 24 books in the series.

Lucas Davenport has faced a few serial killers in his time, but this case turned a bit different. First, all the members of his usual posse have their own assignments, so he has to rely on a tough and abrasive female deputy who catches the eye of the killer. Second, an event makes things ver
May 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I think I love his books more with each new release....I've been in a massive book slump...nothing holds my attention....but this did....and the ending....I love Davenport so much....I love that he is flawed, but his heart is not....I love that he faces moral and ethical dilemmas head on.....doing what he knows will allow him to sleep at night....even if it costs him something somewhere else down the line....and never putting his job before people.....those close to him, or just those he encount ...more
Mar 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller, detective
I received this book via Goodreads giveaway.

Field of Prey is a thriller featuring Inspector Lucas Davenport, who is called into action to pursue an active serial killer. The plot is well crafted, the book is well written, and the characters act in a believable manner. The primary reason I am giving this book a 5 star rating is that I simply could not put the book down once I started it, and I finished it in two days. The book is 400 pages so needless to say I didn't accomplish much else last wee
May 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
While this book ended in typical Davenport fashion the start was different. I felt like it was written quite differently than a typical John Sandford penned novel and I've read a lot of those novels. It was overall cruder (I am not offended by appropriate crudeness) and I felt that, at least for the first half of the book, Weather was all but ignored or given a very secondary roll compared to how Sandford usually includes her in the stories. And then she made somewhat of a larger appearance late ...more
May 31, 2014 rated it really liked it
Author Sandford has another winner on his hands with his latest featuring Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agent Lucas Davenport, although it almost seems he was trying to pack too much action into it (or maybe make sure all the characters we've come to know are here). In any event, dealing with a couple of very different cases in different directions did get a bit confusing at times. The impression I got, in fact, was that this was either an attempt to stretch out the number of pages o ...more
Jan 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Wow. Just wow. I don't know what else to say about this book except the following.

I had resisted reading this book for the past year even though I have always enjoyed this series. I just wasn't in the mood to read what seemed like another book about a serial killer, featuring a maniac on the loose who kept adding to the body count. I don't have the stomach for those kinds of books too much anymore. But I missed reading about Lucas Davenport, so I decided to give in and give this book a chance.
Jun 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Jesus H. Christ, I know better...I fucking KNOW better than to pick up a John Sandford/Lucas Davenport an hour before I need to be asleep because I've got work in the morning. Damn it! Gahhhh!!!! Now I've got three piddly damn hours to sleep. Wonderful. Because nooooo, I just HAD to keep turning the pages, HAD to know what happens next, couldn't POSSIBLY wait til tomorrow to finish, oh HELLLLL NO. Nope, not me. I mean, I know it's gonna be a tight story, I know it's gonna be quippy and witty, I ...more
Jun 16, 2014 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
Charismatic Minnesota BCA detective Lucas Davenport is on the trail of a serial killer of young blond women after their decomposed heads were found in an abandoned cistern on a deserted farm. Quite a gruesome scenario I'll admit, but finding the killer before he kills again drives this runaway train pacing in the newest John Sanford book in a very successful, long running series. There are good reasons why all Sanford's books in this series are best sellers and if you like crime fiction, you owe ...more
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Possibly John Sandford's darkest "Prey" novel 2 25 Mar 15, 2015 09:40AM  
Mystery/Thriller ...: * Field of Prey Chapters 1-5 Spoilers welcome 13 33 Jul 26, 2014 02:18PM  
  • Endangered (Joe Pickett, #15)
  • Killer (Alex Delaware, #29)
  • The Keeper (Dismas Hardy, #15)
  • The Burying Place (Jonathan Stride, #5)
  • Purgatory Ridge (Cork O'Connor, #3)
  • The Burning Room (Harry Bosch, #17; Harry Bosch Universe, #26)
  • Hangman (Abbie Kearney, #2)
  • The Bone Orchard (Mike Bowditch, #5)
  • The 9th Girl (Kovac and Liska, #4)
  • The Promise (Elvis Cole, #16; Joe Pike, #5; Scott James & Maggie, #2)
  • Kill Fee (Stevens & Windermere, #3)
  • The Beast (Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus, #21)
  • The Lost Ones (Quinn Colson, #2)
  • The Hanging Tree
  • Feast Day of Fools (Hackberry Holland, #3)
See also John Camp

John Sandford was born John Roswell 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 Univer
More about John Sandford

Other books in the series

Lucas Davenport (1 - 10 of 28 books)
  • Rules of Prey (Lucas Davenport, #1)
  • Shadow Prey (Lucas Davenport, #2)
  • Eyes of Prey (Lucas Davenport, #3)
  • Silent Prey (Lucas Davenport, #4)
  • Winter Prey (Lucas Davenport, #5)
  • Night Prey (Lucas Davenport, #6)
  • Mind Prey (Lucas Davenport, #7)
  • Sudden Prey (Lucas Davenport, #8)
  • Secret Prey (Lucas Davenport, #9)
  • Certain Prey (Lucas Davenport, #10)

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“It’s the way of the world, man. There are the worker bees, and the manager bees. The worker bees take care of the work, the manager bees take care of themselves.” 14 likes
“I could live here,” Del said. “No, you couldn’t. You’d turn into a coot and hang out at the general store, with your fly down,” Lucas said. “You’d be known for goosing middle-aged women. You’d be the town embarrassment.” 4 likes
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