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Library Lines

“So many books, so little time” is such a common lament with me, and I’m sure with a number of you, too. My problem, as I may have mentioned before, is that I love just about everything, fiction and non-fiction. I wish my tastes were narrower, I really do – I just find far too many topics interesting for my own good.

I recently had three different people ask me if I had ever read the John Sandford series of books featuring Lucas Davenport. I’m familiar with the series, but the answer was “no.” They always looked good, but somehow something else jumped ahead in my reading line. (See previous lament).

Anyway, when three people tell me how much they love Lucas, I decided it was time to start, and so I checked out the first book, “Rules of Prey.”

The book opens with the viewpoint of a serial killer who likes to call himself “maddog” (with good reason) and his feelings about killing women. He has a new potential victim in his sights, and, in fact, is hiding in her apartment, waiting for her return.

“Oh man,” I thought. “I’m not sure I’m in the mood to read about this poor woman being terrorized and murdered.”

I hesitated, but continued to read. Imagine my delight when the potential victim returns to her apartment only to fight off her attacker! She kicks him, she Maces him, she makes him bleed and run away! I was cheering!

Meeting Lucas Davenport in the next chapter was also an unexpected treat. He is not your average cop, by any means. He drives a Porsche, he is uncannily good at betting on horses, plus he designs games in his spare time. He is a smart, sarcastic, and yet kind: he worries about a young, pretty girl working the night shift at a diner. He tells her if she can give away a free taco and a cup of coffee to police officers from 10 p.m. until 6 a.m., she’ll have plenty of security, and he goes on to set up this arrangement. I like a guy who can think outside the box.

Is this great literature? No, but Lucas is definitely becoming a guilty pleasure. Reading is part enlightenment, and part entertainment—and that’s not always a 50/50 split. Nor does it have to be. I like being dropped into new environments with interesting people, and John Sandford has done that with ease. I’m hooked, and I will probably read my way through all 24 books in the series. It’s great to have good friends with good reading taste.

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