Harvey Burgess's Reviews > Shock Wave

Shock Wave by John Sandford
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's review
Apr 30, 2012

it was amazing
Read from April 30 to May 10, 2012

John Sandford's rugged and reliable Virgil Flowers is fast becoming one of the stars of the mystery universe, close to eclipsing even his boss, Lucas Davenport, as Sandford's most readable character. In 'Shock Wave' Virgil is called to the town of Butternut Falls when someone sets off a bomb at the construction site of a mostly-unwanted discount chain store. The blast comes after another bomb has already been triggered at the company's national headquarters and investigators believe a serial bomber is at work. Some explosions follow to confirm this theory, and the probe is launched to see if it's being triggered by an irate trout fisherman or, perhaps, one of the small business owners who will likely go under because of the discount competition. Sandford paints pictures of a variety of likely suspects, but there's always a catch, an anomaly, that keeps the question afloat. Virgil himself is even targeted, rattling his usual laid-back demeanor and giving yet another jolt along the twisted path he follows until the story's end. Sandford's use of humor and a 'cop's-eye view' of the case and life in general lifts 'Shock Wave' above the ordinary. It'll definitely satisfy Flowers fans and will likely expand Sandford's legion of followers.

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