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Dark of the Moon
Cover of Dark of the Moon
Dark of the Moon
Virgil Flowers Series, Book 1
The first Virgil Flowers novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author John Sandford
"Virgil Flowers, introduced in bestseller Sandford's Prey series, gets a chance to shine...The thrice-divorced, affable member of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA), who reports to Prey series hero Lucas Davenport, operates pretty much on his own.."*
He's been doing the hard stuff for three years, but he's never seen anything like this. In the small rural town of Bluestem, an old man is bound in his basement, doused with gasoline and set on fire. Three weeks before, a doctor and his wife were murdered. Three homicides in Bluestem in just as many weeks is unheard of. It's also no coincidence. And it's far from over...
From the Paperback edition.
The first Virgil Flowers novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author John Sandford
"Virgil Flowers, introduced in bestseller Sandford's Prey series, gets a chance to shine...The thrice-divorced, affable member of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA), who reports to Prey series hero Lucas Davenport, operates pretty much on his own.."*
He's been doing the hard stuff for three years, but he's never seen anything like this. In the small rural town of Bluestem, an old man is bound in his basement, doused with gasoline and set on fire. Three weeks before, a doctor and his wife were murdered. Three homicides in Bluestem in just as many weeks is unheard of. It's also no coincidence. And it's far from over...
From the Paperback edition.
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  • From the book

    DARK OF THE MOON

    ALSO BY JOHN SANDFORD

    Rules of Prey

    Shadow Prey

    Eyes of Prey

    Silent Prey

    Winter Prey

    Night Prey

    Mind Prey

    Sudden Prey

    The Night Crew

    Secret Prey

    Certain Prey

    Easy Prey

    Chosen Prey

    Mortal Prey

    Naked Prey

    Hidden Prey

    Broken Prey

    Dead Watch

    Invisible Prey

    KIDD NOVELS

    The Fool's Run

    The Empress File

    The Devil's Code

    The Hanged Man's Song

    DARK OF THE MOON

    JOHN SANDFORD

    G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS NEW YORK

    Acknowledgment

    Chapter 1

    Chapter 2

    Chapter 3

    Chapter 4

    Chapter 5

    Chapter 6

    Chapter 7

    Chapter 8

    Chapter 9

    Chapter 10

    Chapter 11

    Chapter 12

    Chapter 13

    Chapter 14

    Chapter 15

    Chapter 16

    Chapter 17

    Chapter 18

    Chapter 19

    Chapter 20

    Chapter 21

    Chapter 22

    Chapter 23

    Chapter 24

    Chapter 25

    Chapter 26

    Acknowledgment

    This book was written in cooperation with my friend Larry Millett, an architectural writer (The Curve of the Arch, Lost Twin Cities), local historian (Strange Days, Dangerous Nights), and occasional novelist (Sherlock Holmes and the Red Demon and four other tales featuring Holmes and Irish barkeep Shadwell Rafferty). Millett was recently described in a general-circulation magazine as "handsome," which threw me into paroxysms of jealousy, but which, in the end, did not deflect us from our appointed deadline....

    —JOHN SANDFORD

    1

    SIX GARBAGE BAGS full of red cedar shavings, purchased two at a time for a dollar a bag, at midnight, at the self-serve shed at Dunstead & Daughter Custom Furniture, serving your fine cabinetry needs since 1986. No cameras, no lights, no attendant, no theft, no problem.

    Moonie stacked the bags in the basement, Cross Canadian Ragweed pounding through the iPod ear-buds, singing about those dead-red lips; then up the stairs, pulling the ear-buds, to where the old man lay facedown on the rug, shaking, kicking, crying, trying to get free. Tied with cheap hemp rope, but no matter. The old man was so old and so feeble that string would have worked as well as rope.

    "Please," he groaned, "don't hurt me."

    Moonie laughed, a long singing rock 'n' roll laugh, and at the end of it, said, "I'm not going to hurt you. I'm going to kill you."

    "What do you want? I can tell you where the money is."

    "The money's not what I want. I've got what I want." Moonie gripped the rope between the old man's ankles and dragged him to the basement stairs, and then down the stairs, the old man's face banging down each tread as they went.

    "Oh my Jesus, help me," the old man wept through his bloody lips, his fractured face. "Help me, Jesus."

    Thump! Thump! Thump! Nine times.

    "Jesus isn't going to help," Moonie said.

    The old man pulled it together for a second. "He can send you to hell," he snarled.

    "Where do you think I am, old man?"

    "You..."

    "Shut up. I'm working."

    GETTING THE OLD MAN onto the bags was the hardest part. Moonie first threw him facedown on the topmost bag, then heaved his feet up. The old man was tall, but frail; eighty-two years old and sedentary and semi-senile, though not so senile that he didn't know what was happening now. He sank down into the bags of wood shavings and thrashed there, got halfway off, then sank down between them, thrashed some more, then quit. Wood...

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    July 23, 2007
    Virgil Flowers, introduced in bestseller Sandford’s Prey series (Invisible Prey
    , etc.), gets a chance to shine in his own vehicle and does so brightly. The thrice-divorced, affable member of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA), who reports to Prey series hero Lucas Davenport, operates pretty much on his own as he tackles a murder wave that hits the little town of Bluestem. At the center of the story is old Bill Judd, hated by many who blame him for the Jerusalem artichoke scheme that made him rich and others poor. Other motives abound as do suspects—including a religious/survivalist cult headed by a felon or some of the many who participated in the long ago orgies Judd orchestrated. Flowers likes to stir things up and see what happens, and plenty does as the killings continue. Sandford keeps the reader guessing and the pages turning while Flowers displays the kind of cool and folksy charm that might force Davenport to share the spotlight more often. 500,000 first printing.

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Virgil Flowers Series, Book 1
John Sandford
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