Field of Prey is the 24th installment in the crime suspense novels list, the Prey series written by bestselling author, John Sandford. This books opens to a nasty cistern, full of skulls discovered by random teenagers having fun in a open field. Because of the sheer number of the dead people, the Governor gets the best of the detectives on the job, that is Lucas Davenport is asked to quickly solve the case.
This case is aptly named as the ‘Black Hole’ case and has Bob Shaffer and his crew from BCA working parallel with Lucas Davenport to chase the killer. Early in the case itself, Shaffer solves the case, but doubts if his lead pans out to anything and makes the fatal mistake of going without backup. Bob Shaffer gets killed and Lucas becomes obsessed with solving the case immediately.
Del Capslock and Virgil Flowers work on separate but urgent cases, so, Lucas is left alone on the Black Hole case. Weather is worried for his safety as usual. Letty is getting ready for college and this prospect keeps tearing up Sam every night. Elle Kruger, Lucas’s childhood friend and a leading psychiatrist, is pulled into this case by Lucas for advice. Elle has come into picture after taking a break from many Prey novels and this added more intellect to this novel.
When Shaffer gets killed, a small girl witnesses the killer walking around the crime scene. This fact is exploited by her parents to get her exposure on the television because they plan to groom her for beauty contests. The fact that these silly things can also happen without regard to murder or the danger they might be in is clearly pictured by the author in this book. The way of the world is silly sometimes.
The killer meanwhile is hard to get at, making this book interesting. Except for the high amount of violence suffered by the victims, I was totally absorbed by the plot and quite enjoyed Lucas Davenport chasing the killer. He works with a local female cop, who also becomes a target for the killer.
Del gets seriously injured in a gunfight and another agent who worked with him on the case is killed. The author shows the dangerous and selfless lives led by the police to help protect ordinary citizens from crime. The way their family gets affected is also shown squeezing us with emotion.
I could not put this book down at all, because I kept wondering how Lucas could miss a clue that Bob Shaffer saw as soon as the investigation opened. If only he did not worry about getting teased if his thin lead did not pan out, Shaffer would have made it alive from the case. Shows how good investigators also can get killed because of their sense of self-preservation.
Also, the killer gets away with so many murders for years together, this makes the villain even more dangerous and so the plot is that much more interesting. This book is a definite page-turner, so, make sure you have all night to enjoy it. Have a great read!
For the review of the next book in the Prey series read Gathering Prey.
For the review of the previous book in the Prey series read Silken Prey.
For the complete list of Sandford’s Prey series books, check List Of Prey Series Books.