John Sandford Books

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John Sandford is the best selling author of many novels, ranging in genre from thriller, mystery, young adult, science fiction, and non-fiction. After being a reporter in the Army, he became a reporter for two papers for almost twenty years.

Order of Prey/Lucas Davenport Series

1Rules of Prey 1989Description / Buy
2Shadow Prey 1990Description / Buy
3Eyes of Prey 1991Description / Buy
4Silent Prey 1992Description / Buy
5Winter Prey 1993Description / Buy
6Night Prey 1994Description / Buy
7Mind Prey 1995Description / Buy
8Sudden Prey 1996Description / Buy
9Secret Prey 1998Description / Buy
10Certain Prey 1999Description / Buy
11Easy Prey 2000Description / Buy
12Chosen Prey 2001Description / Buy
13Mortal Prey 2002Description / Buy
14Naked Prey 2003Description / Buy
15Hidden Prey 2004Description / Buy
16Broken Prey 2005Description / Buy
17Invisible Prey 2007Description / Buy
18Phantom Prey 2008Description / Buy
19Wicked Prey 2009Description / Buy
20Storm Prey 2010Description / Buy
21Buried Prey 2011Description / Buy
22Stolen Prey 2012Description / Buy
23Silken Prey 2013Description / Buy
24Field of Prey 2014Description / Buy
25Gathering Prey 2015Description / Buy
26Extreme Prey 2016Description / Buy
27Golden Prey 2017Description / Buy
28Twisted Prey 2018Description / Buy
29Neon Prey 2019Description / Buy
30Masked Prey 2020Description / Buy
31Ocean Prey 2021Description / Buy

Order of Lucas Davenport vs. Lincoln Rhyme Short Stories/Novellas

1Rhymes With Prey: Lincoln Rhyme vs. Lucas Davenport (Short Story) ( With: Jeffery Deaver) 2014Description / Buy

Order of Kidd & LuEllen Series

1The Fool's Run 1989Description / Buy
2The Empress File 1991Description / Buy
3The Devil's Code 2000Description / Buy
4The Hanged Man's Song 2003Description / Buy

Order of Virgil Flowers Series

1Dark of the Moon 2004Description / Buy
2Heat Lightning 2008Description / Buy
3Rough Country 2009Description / Buy
4Bad Blood 2010Description / Buy
5Shock Wave 2011Description / Buy
6Mad River 2012Description / Buy
7Storm Front 2013Description / Buy
8Deadline 2014Description / Buy
9Escape Clause 2016Description / Buy
10Deep Freeze 2017Description / Buy
11Holy Ghost 2018Description / Buy
12Bloody Genius 2019Description / Buy
13Ocean Prey 2021Description / Buy

Order of Singular Menace Series

1Uncaged 2014Description / Buy
2Outrage 2015Description / Buy
3Rampage 2016Description / Buy

Order of John Sandford Standalone Novels

1The Night Crew 1997Description / Buy
2Dead Watch 2006Description / Buy
3Saturn Run 2015Description / Buy

Order of John Sandford Non-Fiction Books

1The Eye And The Heart (Short Story) 1988Description / Buy
2Plastic Surgery 1989Description / Buy

John Sandford Anthologies

1 FaceOff2014Description / Buy
2 MatchUp2017Description / Buy
3 The Best American Mystery Stories 20172017Description / Buy
Print: Print PDF

He said that after working as a reporter in St. Paul for a short time, he found that there was very little that could happen to report on and got burnt out on it. So he started writing fictional stories to try and start another career. He has not entirely quit journalism, he still writes a few articles for certain things. He was born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa and graduated from the University of Iowa. He was born on February 23, 1944. He was married to his wife, Susan Lee Jones from 1966 until her death in May of 2007; she died of breast cancer. Together, they had two kids (Roswell and Emily), who have three kids of their own. He would remarry in 2013 to Michele Cook, who is a screenwriter and journalist. They live together in New Mexico and Wisconsin.

Sandford has spent most of his career writing the “Prey” series. And he has also written the “Kidd & LuEllen” series, the “Virgil Flowers” series, and the “Singular Menace” trilogy (with wife Michele Cook). The “Prey” series, “Kidd” series, and “Virgil Flowers” series all take place in one universe, because the three lead characters detective Lucas Davenport (“Prey” series), computer expert/ artist Kidd (“Kidd” series), and Virgil Flowers (“Virgil Flowers” series) have all appeared in the ‘Prey” series. Virgil Flowers started out as a character in the “Prey” series, and when he became popular, Sandford started writing novels with him as the main character. He has also written some stand alone novels (including one with Ctein) and some non fiction books.


The chronological order of all John Sandford novels in each series are the same as the publication order of them.


John Sandford is a Pulitzer Prize winning Journalist (he was nominated for another in 1980). He won the prize in 1986 for articles that he wrote about a farming family over the course of a year. Ten years later, he wrote a follow up story on the farming family to talk about what they had been up to since he stopped documenting their life.

He also won the the Distinguished Writing Award of the American Society of Newspaper Editors in 1985.


There have been two made for TV movies made from his works. The first one was in 1999 called Mind Prey. it featured Eriq La Salle as Lucas Davenport. The other made for TV movie was Certain Prey, which came out in 2011. This one starred Mark Harmon as Davenport.


John Sandford has written some great novels in his time, but some have stood out more for fans. Two of the books that Sandford is most known for are “Certain Prey” and “Eyes of Prey”. Two of his most known villains are found in these two books; and would later get their own sequels to conclude their arcs.

Certain Prey: introduces readers to villain Carmel Rinker. She would later appear in “Mortal Prey”. Readers feel sympathetic (and even like her, in some cases) towards her because she was raped and later took care of the man who raped her. She is a villain because she is a killer. Over the course of the events in “Certain Prey”, she becomes friends with a lawyer. Of the reviews on Amazon, 63% of them were five star reviews.

Eyes of Prey: This one features villain Dr. Bekker (who would return in “Silent Prey”). Unlike Rinker, Dr. Bekker is not someone fans like. He has been compared to Hannibal Lecter for the way that he kills his victims. Davenport, after working some nasty cases, is not quite a hundred percent to solve the case, that starts out with a woman being murdered. The only clue that Lucas can work with at the beginning is that a troll looking man with a scarred face was seen near the crime scene. Of the reviews on Amazon, 66% were five star reviews.

Bad Blood: In addition to the Prey series, John Sandford has also written the Virgil Flowers series which has gotten excellent reviews from fans and reviewers alike. It is a spin-off from the main Lucas Davenport/Prety series and stars Virgil Flowers as a thrice-divorced, affable member of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

Many fans think Bad Blood is the book where Virgil Flowers really starts to match Lucas Davenport in terms of story quality and intrigue. The story begins with a young man just out of high school murdering a local farmer, trying to make it look like an accident. When he is arrested for the crime, he’s found dead in his jail cell under very fishy circumstances and no one knows why he did the original crime. It’s on Virgil to figure out why and solve the case in this book filled with twists and exciting action scene.

Deep Freeze: The most recent Virgil Flowers book is also one of the best in the series. This one takes the theme of High School being murder and taking it to it’s extreme. A 25-year high school reunion is coming up in a small Minnesota town and a woman has been found dead, frozen in a block of ice. In order to figure out who did it, Virgil must ingratiate himself with the class and dig in to years of drama, bad blood and feuds. This is beloved by most fans and has some of the funnier elements of any Virgil Flowers book.

When Does The Next John Sandford book come out?

John Sandford doesn't seem to have an upcoming book. Their newest book is Ocean Prey and was released on April, 20th 2021. It is the newest book in the Virgil Flowers Series.

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