It's the Virgil we love. Interesting twists, not the darkness of some of Virgil's other books; but a great read just the same. Ignore the other comments to the contrary, get this and enjoy.
One of the more Byzantine plots from the Flowers series. Immensely entertaining: Dan Brown meets the Maltese Falcon at the cross roads of Lake Woebegon. As usual, Eric Conger brings life to John Sanford's richly drawn characters.
I am a huge fan of Sandford and the character but this story is just majorly way too hard to follow. You would need to make a spread sheet of the characters just to even try to keep up with what is going on but even that would not help I'm afraid.
An intriguing story full of memorable characters sprinkled with some great wit. I'd love to read a sequel to this story.
English major, Attorney then CEO of 5000 employee company (in that order). I have over 1200 books in my Audible library.
I wish Virgil were real and worked in my town. I like him a lot and would like to sit in the diner and talk to him. This was a good book - a little different from former books in the series, but Virgil is still the same. There is a lot of humor in the story and so many suspects that you are constantly changing your mind. Which shell is the stone under!? The Israel connection is interesting, but the great majority of the story takes place in Minnesota, as usual. I loved the Lebanese student pilot. He was an entertaining character and a suspect. Ma is also very interesting and also entertaining and also a suspect. Sandford keep me guessing on this one.
I've read all of Sandford's novels and I'm particularly fond of the Flowers series but not this one. Too many half-developed characters and an implausible story that never grabs you. Good narration though and quite funny at times. I still love you Virgil but leave the international intrigues to Jason Bourne. Minnesota is where the fun is.
Maybe it's me. Who knows what subjective criteria influence enjoyment, but I'll bet there are plenty. Still, after having listened to everything by John Sandford available either at Audible or on discs at the library, and loving all featuring Lucas and/or Virgil Flowers, I was not intrigued by this title.
The plot is massively unlikely, and it limps along. Virgil remains a fabulous character and I especially like his sometime-girlfriend this time out, but the story made me feel tired. I didn't care about the stone, real or fake, and didn't believe a minister working for so many summers in Israel would so abuse the country's hospitality. Plus, when the payoffs came, making the story work, I must have been daydreaming. Who paid?
Sandford is good at making his evil-doers scary, but the thug in this book said to be famous for cutting off men's balls seems as if he wandered in off the set of a sitcom. Who'd be scared of him?
Do good people turn to crime just because they need the money? Maybe sometimes, but I'd need a little more convincing than Sandford provides. And don't ministers at some point rely on God's grace and mercy? Shouldn't a minister in good standing in his profession at least be seen to pray about his problem, even once?
Even given all that, it's still a John Sandford title. If I knew all this before buying the title, I'd probably still buy it. At his worst, Sandford is better than most.
Retired former magazine editor who is working harder than ever as Mr. Dad to his 13-year-old daughter.
Not sure that John Sandford spend a lot of time writing this novel. He introduced several characters that were not germane to the story and when they reappeared several pages later it had me trying to recall where they fit in. The agent with the double secret phone was one such character. That aside, this was a typical Flowers yarn, even though it didn't deal with the typical Flowers elements. Can't remember Virgil dealing with too many ancient biblical artifacts in his previous adventures. Lots of running in circles in this story but enough action, comedy and intrigue to keep Flowers fans interested. The twist at the end fit the story perfectly. The length was about right too. Those who like the Flowers series will be satisfied but not overly impressed.
I found this book hard to follow. I had to back up several times to relisten to it. I guess I had thought this was a Davenport novel, but it is a Flowers novel. I guess I should have looked at the title. John Sanford does not have a good range of different voices, so I had a hard time figuring out who was talking. I just found this book to be far fetched, and not very captivating.
I like John Sanford as a writer but I noticed throughout his books he has to throw out some of his liberal agenda. At the end of this book he had to take a shot at Fox News, kind of sad that a writer has to do that in a good police novel, come on John, like MSNBC isn't a hand of the Dems, oh yeah that's ok because they share your beliefs.