JoAnne U. reviewed Phantom Prey (Lucas Davenport, Bk 18) on
Helpful Score: 3
5 star This book was as great as the 17 before it. I really like John Sanford and "Lucas Davenport" along with the others in the storys. All 18 in the series have held my interest, sometime enough to cost me sleep. Very good.
I started with great anticipation on this 18th installment of the Lucas Davenport series and sadly, did not feel it met the mark. The plot seemed very unbelievable mid-point through the tale. It seems far-fetched that an otherwise intelligent, business-owning widow would become a mindless murdering machine who has not one but two imaginary personalities! It is never explained what brought on this break with reality and how she was able to conduct her business affairs as "normally" as possible without others noticing. The author should have spent a little more time researching multiple personality disorder before writing this thinly-veiled psycho-babble novel.
A great Prey book. I would recommend starting with the first Prey if you are new to Sandford. I thoroughly enjoy the character and relationship development in the Prey series besides the great mystery. I have no idea how come the paperbackswap book description includes details on CDs. This is a paperback edition.
Back for his eighteenth appearance, Lucas Davenport of the Minnesota State Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) is not only on the job, but in top form.
The main story concerns Alyssa Austin, recently widowed when the airplane carrying her millionaire pilot husband Hunter crashed in Canada, comes home to discover the alarm system of her tony suburban home turned off, but no one in the house. Knowing the housekeeper Helen is gone for the day, Alyssa calls out for her daughter Frances who might be visiting. Alyssa searches the house and finds what turns out to be a small blood stain on the wallpape. The blood belongs to Frances and the police find that more blood has been wiped from the floors.
But there is no corpse.
A sub-plot concerns Lucas Davenport and colleague Del staking out the apartment of the wife of dope dealer, who apparently is immodest of often peels off her top with the shades up. The cops are trying to nab her currently absent drug kingpin husband.
Lucas Davenport is independently wealthy because he developed and sold a software company. He doesn't have to work, but he likes being a cop and solving the really tough cases, which just happens to be what the BCA does. In earlier stories, Sandford spent a lot of time developing Lucas Davenport. This time around, Davenport, married to surgeon Weather, with a young son and adopted teenage daughter is less introspective and more action oriented.
And there is plenty of action. As it turns out, the distraught mother, Alyssa Austin, owns several exclusive fitness centers, knows Weather and asks her to get her husband involved in the case. Reluctantly, Lucas gets involved - just in time for a series of gruesome murders of young Twin Cities "Goths". Frances, the missing daughter, was into the Goth scene.
Sandford is one of the best police procedural writers around today. He doesn't miss a beat in this one. Davenport is a cerebral cop who is constantly dogging a case, wondering how the leads and clues fit together. Almost as an aside, he tracks a money trail through the Goth community as one after another is murdered. Davenport himself comes in for a close call.
It's a taut thriller, with Davenport displaying more than the occasional flash of brilliant inspiration that brings him one step closer to solving the crimes.
John Sanford is simply one of the finest authors of police procedurals in the business. The nice thing about the "Prey" series is that if you start with one, you might be drawn to reading the others. Start with the first and work your way through all of them. They really are excellent reading.
Not up to his usual standards. Meanders around with characters that are uninteresting. I kept losing my concentration throughout and the whole thing seemed sketchy and incomplete. It's not good enough to pass on.
This is a complicated but very fascinating episode for Lucas Davenport and his cohorts in Minnesota. It appears two people are murdering people associated with the Goths, but things are not as they seem. Meanwhile, as a side story, Lucas and Dell are watching a woman in hopes of nabbing her gangster husband. That scenario presents some humor in an otherwise dark storyline. We are spell bound with the twists and turns this book takes right up to the end.
Oh Boy! I've read Lucas Davenport stories until I'm ready for a break, but I enjoyed each and every one of them. This one goes off the tracks just a little bit! Not his usual kind of suspects, but you know one of them is guilty, it's just really tricky deciding which one!
I've read a few of Sandford's other novels, in no particular order, and have enjoyed them. The same goes for Phantom Prey, Davenport's encounter with the Goths of the Twin Cities. The writing is above average, with a well-constructed and interesting plot. The story feels realistic, if more than a little quirky, and is serious without taking itself too seriously. In fact, I really like the irreverent, often bawdy, humor; Davenport, Del and the rest always manage to come up with a good line. I like the characters too, although I don't think that the abrasive Weather will ever be a favorite. I probably won't read the series in order, but Sandford is an author I'll certainly come back to from time to time.
I've read quite a few of the Prey series books. Being from Minnesota myself, its always interesting because the stories are set there and I'm familiar with a lot of the areas that are discussed in the book.
Compared to the other books in this series, I would say that this was an okay read. The premise is that an old friend asks Lucas to help her solve the murder of her daughter. It just so happens that people that knew her daughter are also being murdered. I thought the storyline unfolded nicely at first, but I felt too much was given too soon. I also felt the ending was a bit rushed, but if you've enjoyed the series thus far, then I do recommend that you read this as well.
Great Sandford story. The Prey series keeps going with terrific story line. I thought that when Lucas married the stories would become stale and unexciting. So far the series remains suspenseful with some humor. Personally I would begin with the first Prey novel if you are new to the series. I like the development of the characters that begin in the first Prey and carry through in the following books. Also for those waiting for a paperback edition, the Berkley paperback edition is available.
I don't remember where I got this book. I just found it on my bookshelf and figured I would try it. I was not disappointed. It is one book in a long series that you don't have to have read the others to keep up with. I've not read John Sandford's "Prey" series before, but I think I will have to add those on my books to read. It is about a detective named Lucas Davenport who is attempting to solve a strange series of murders in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. The one, no two things I disliked about this were the high numbers of characters, and the intertwining of 2 completely different plots. I really dislike reading books with high numbers of characters because I have problems keeping them all straight after a while. Also, Sandford's detective Davenport is working on two different crimes, and the story flip-flops back and forth, adding to the list of characters to keep straight. Other than that, I found this book enormously entertaining and a very quick read.
Once again, Sandford has produced a masterful thriller, loaded with suspense even when he gives you the identity of the killer well before the end. Lucas Davenport is asked by his wife Weather to look into the disappearance her friend's daughter, who the police suspect is dead. Soon her Goth friends are killed one by one and Lucas himself is shot. The wily detective struggles to unravel an intricate tangle of suspects and motives, even as he assists his colleagues with a protracted surveillance in search of a dangerous drug dealer who had skipped bail. Sandford takes the reader on a convoluted roller coaster ride, leading one down a path and then managing to throw in an unexpected twist just when you think you have it figured out. The suspense culminates in the expected shootout and showdown that make his books so entertaining, and are no less satisfying for being a given.
Another in the Lucas Davenport series and a good one. A women comes home one evening and find the security system off and bloodstains on the walls. The blood turns out to be that of her daughter but the case goes nowhere and no body is found. Soon two mysterious Goths are bent on discovering the killer and extracting revenge. Suddenly bodies are turning up and Lucas and Co are at their wits end trying to solve the case. All is not what it seems to be and it isn't until late in the book that the reader gets a clue as to who the killer or killers may be. Some surprising twists and good read.