The fourth Virgil Flowers novel by internationally bestselling author John Sandford
On a cold late Autumn Sunday in Southern Minnesota, a farmer bringing in his harvest is bludgeoned around the head by a young man wielding a bat. Leaving the unconscious farmer to drown in the grain bin, the young man calls the sheriff's office to report the 'accident'.
Suspicious about the nature of the incident, Sheriff Lee Coakley quickly breaks the teenager down. But when she finds him hanging in his cell the next morning, she doubts it was remorse or guilt that led him to take his own life. In fact, she's not convinced it was suicide at all.
Worried that she is up against a far more complicated case than she first thought, Coakley calls in Virgil Flowers.For an investigator with his expertise, it doesn't take long for Flowers to uncover a conspiracy that has bubbled away under the surface of this sleepy community for generations - and a series of crimes so monstrous that the small town can never be the same again.
* * * Praise for John Sandford and the Virgil Flower novels * * *
‘Along the way to the satisfying ending, Virgil displays the rough humor and rough justice that make him such an appealing character’ Publishers Weekly on Deep Freeze
‘A knowing portrait of small-town life layered into a very well plotted mystery. Virgil understands that, in small towns, no one ever outgrows high school... One of the very best novels in a superior series’Booklist (starred review) on Deep Freeze
‘Add a gripping storyline, a generous helping of exquisitely conceived characters and laugh-out-loud humor that produce explosive guffaws, not muted chuckles, and you’re in for the usual late-night, don’t-even-think-of-stopping treat when Flowers hits town’ Richmond Times-Dispatch on Deep Freeze
‘An outstanding novel’ Publishers Weekly (starred review) on Escape Clause
‘Perfect entertainment’ Kirkus Reviews on Escape Clause
When 19-year-old Bob Tripp hits farmer Jacob Flood in the head with a T-ball bat at the outset of Sandford's exciting fourth thriller to feature Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agent Virgil Flowers (after Rough Country), Tripp's subsequent attempt to make murder look like an accident fails. The morning after Tripp's arrest, he's found hanging in his cell. Warren County sheriff Lee Coakley seeks Flowers's help to investigate what role, if any, deputy Jim Crocker, the officer on duty at the jail at the time, played in Tripp's death. A link to the earlier murder of a young woman leads Flowers and Coakley to members of a small church with strange ways. As the pair become aware of the magnitude of the unspeakable crimes (rape, child abuse, incest) behind the deaths, they search desperately for a lever to pry open what turns out to be Flowers's biggest, if perhaps most unlikely, case to date. Author tour.