Rough Country, by John Sandford

Rough Country (Virgil Flowers Series #3) by John Sandford: Book CoverFinished 10-21-09, rating 3.5/5, mystery, pub. 2009

Book #3 in the Virgil Flowers series.

Walking out to the dock, Johnson said, “The old bag kinda climbed my tree.”

“One rule when you’re dealing with people close to a murder victim,” Virgil said.  “Try not to laugh.”

Chapter 2

Virgil Flowers works with Lucas Davenport (the Prey series) in the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, investigating high profile crimes.  When Lucas sends him to solve a crime at a women’s retreat in northern Minnesota, single and always available Virgil, is happily surrounded by women.  But most of them aren’t looking twice at Virgil, they are too busy eyeing each other. 

A successful businesswoman is shot while canoeing and her love life leads him to an all-girl band with a talented singer going places.  The singer, Wendy, has an active love life and a crazy brother and dad, leading Virgil to link another murder to the one of the businesswoman. 

Virgil is a laid back, good looking man who exudes charm and cool and he is also the most successful closer in the Bureau.  The contrast between his humor and sexuality to his quoting Bible verses when the situation fits makes for an interesting character.  I like Virgil and would love to hang out at a bar listening to music with him (and my husband, of course)

This is another solid mystery by Sandford, but I did have an issue with the heavy handed way he dealt with gay women in this one.  I know people use derogatory language for many different groups and it usually doesn’t bother me if it defines the character, but in this case a few too many characters had issues.  And some of the storylines involving gay women seemed stereotypical. 

And for some reason there were numerous breaks in book, the kind that usually tell you the action has ended and you’re going somewhere else.  Except after the break you were back at the same place, with the same people, and still in the middle of conversation.  This didn’t really take enjoyment away from the story, but it did make me wonder what the point was. 

This was a library book.