Authors Like John Sandford (11 Book Recommendations)

Are you looking for a thrilling read that will grip you and keep you captivated? Do you enjoy reading crime and suspense novels, much like his Virgil Flowers series or his Lucas Davenport series? Which includes a whopping 33 novels within the series!

Authors Like John Sandford (11 Book Recommendations)

Doing a deep dive into the genre of crime and suspense fiction can seem daunting with so many novelists to choose from. One of the top authors in the genre is John Sandford.

John Sandford, who has been writing thrillers since 1989 has had incredible success, making him one of the most popular authors in the genre.

His writing style is one-of-a-kind, and his plots are filled with action and intrigue. In this article, we will explore some of John Sandford’s work and discover why he has become such an iconic figure in the field of crime fiction.

If you have enjoyed any of John Stanford’s novels, and you’re looking for your next exciting read to dig your fingers into, then authors like John Grisham, Karen Dionne, and Dean Koontz should be added to your reading list!

Books By John Sandford

John Sandford is one of the most beloved authors in the mystery and police procedural genre. His books have captivated readers for decades with their thrilling stories featuring stone-cold killers and larger-than-life cops.

Lucas Davenport Books

The Publication Order of Prey/Lucas Davenport Books is a series of novels and short stories written by John Sandford.

The series follows the adventures of Lucas Davenport, a Minneapolis police detective who often finds himself in the middle of dangerous cases. The series began with Rules of Prey in 1989 and has since spawned numerous sequels, spin-offs, and short stories.

The first novel in the series, Rules of Prey, introduces readers to Lucas Davenport as he investigates a serial killer terrorizing Minneapolis. Since then, the series has continued to follow Lucas as he solves various cases involving murder and other criminal activities. 

In addition to the main novels in the series, there are also several short stories and novellas featuring Lucas Davenport that have been released over the years. 

These include The Fool’s Run (1989), and Letty Davenport books. Each story offers readers an exciting new adventure with Lucas at its center.

Virgil Flowers Books

The first book in the Virgil Flowers series is Dark of the Moon. Written by John Sandford, this novel follows Virgil Flowers, an investigator for the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. 

In this installment, Virgil is sent to a small town in Minnesota to investigate a series of murders that have been occurring over the past few months. As he delves into the case, he discovers that all the victims are connected to a local cult and its mysterious leader.

With help from his friend and fellow investigator Lucas Davenport, Virgil must unravel the secrets behind these murders before more innocent people become victims.

Standalone Novels

The Night Crew is a standalone novel written by American author John Sandford. It was first published in 1997 and follows the story of Lucas Davenport, an investigator for the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. 

The novel begins with Davenport being called to investigate a series of murders that have been occurring in rural Minnesota.

As he delves deeper into the investigation, he discovers that the murders are linked to a group of criminals known as the Night Crew.

The Singular Menace

The Singular Menace series by author John Sandford is a thrilling set of novels that follows the adventures of Virgil Flowers, an agent for the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

The first book in the series, Uncaged, was released in 2014 and introduces readers to Virgil as he investigates a case involving a group of animal rights activists who are suspected of committing acts of terrorism.

Filled with suspense and action-packed moments, Uncaged is sure to keep readers on the edge of their seats until its thrilling conclusion.

With its complex characters and gripping plot lines, this novel is sure to please fans of crime fiction looking for an exciting read.

Authors Like John Sandford

These new books feature all the elements that make Sandford’s work so popular: suspenseful plots, complex characters, and plenty of action. From gritty crime dramas to psychological thrillers, there’s something for everyone on this list.

Whether you’re looking for a classic whodunit or an edge-of-your-seat page-turner, these books will keep you entertained from start to finish. So if you’re a fan of John Sandford’s work, be sure to check out our recommendations below!

Haylen Beck

Here and Gone: A Novel

Haylen Beck’s novel Here and Gone is a gripping story of a woman’s desperate attempt to escape an abusive marriage with her two children in tow.

The novel begins as the woman, who remains unnamed throughout the story, is pulled over by an unsettling local sheriff in Arizona. Things quickly take a turn for the worse when she is taken into custody and her children are nowhere to be found.

When she arrives at the station, the police officers deny ever seeing any kids with her. The woman must now find a way to get her kids back while evading capture by those who wish to keep them apart.

With no one to turn to, she embarks on a harrowing journey across state lines in search of her missing children. If you like the sound of this novel, you may also enjoy some of her other written works, such as Lost You, and Ohne Spur.


  • An intense thriller that keeps readers interested.
  • Written extremely well with perfect plot holes.
  • Enticing novel.


  • May not be the right novel for every reader out there who enjoys thrillers.

Dean Koontz

The Silent Corner: A Novel of Suspense (Jane Hawk)

Dean Koontz’s The Silent Corner is a thrilling mystery novel that follows the story of Jane Hawk, a widow who is determined to uncover the truth behind her husband’s sudden suicide.

With no explanation as to why he would take his own life, Jane embarks on a journey to find out what happened and why people are suddenly committing suicide. As she dives deeper into the mystery, she quickly becomes America’s most wanted fugitive.

The Silent Corner is an intense read that will keep readers on their toes as they follow Jane in her quest for answers. With unexpected twists and turns, Koontz has crafted an exciting story that will keep readers guessing until the very end.

From start to finish, The Silent Corner is sure to be an unforgettable read that will leave readers wanting more.

If you enjoyed the sound of this incredible story by Dean Koontz, then you may like some of his other novels, such as The House at the End of the World, and The Other Emily.


  • Unexpected turns and twists throughout the novel.
  • Intense dialogue and a plot line that keeps readers engaged.
  • Unexpected ending but just as thrilling.


  • Some readers find that they’re just not able to get into the story.

John Grisham

Camino Island: A Novel

John Grisham’s latest novel, Camino Island, is a thrilling story of mystery and suspense.

Five extremely rare manuscripts of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s have been stolen in a heist in the opening scenes, and then the book moves onto a journey to Florida to find any clues as to the whereabouts of these manuscripts.

If you find the description for this novel enticing, why not check out some of his other books, such as The Judge’s List and The Whistler?


  • Readers have stated that they couldn’t get enough of this novel.
  • The book has been written well with engaging characters.


  • A more tame thriller in terms of the typical themes in thrillers.

Karen Dionne

The Marsh King's Daughter

Karen Dionne’s 2017 novel, The Marsh King’s Daughter, tells the story of Helena, a woman with a secret.

As a child, she was unaware that her father had abducted her mother as a teenager and kept her in an isolated cabin in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. 

But when her father escapes from prison and disappears into the marshland after killing two guards, Helena knows that the police won’t be able to find him.

She must take matters into her own hands and use her knowledge of the marshlands to track down her father before he can do any more harm. One of her other novels, on the topic of thrillers, is Boiling Point.


  • An intense thriller that doesn’t disappoint.
  • A fan favorite of Dionne’s novels.
  • An enticing storyline with changes that make sense to the themes.


  • Some readers have found that the book doesn’t add suspense in the right way they’d like it to.

Final Thoughts

John Sandford is a master of suspense and mystery, and readers looking for similar authors should definitely check out Haylen Beck, Dean Koontz, and John Grisham.

Each of these authors has crafted thrilling stories that will keep readers on the edge of their seats until the very end.

From Here and Gone to The Silent Corner to Camino Island, these books are sure to be unforgettable reads that will leave readers wanting more.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is John Sandford’s Most Popular Novel?

One of his most popular books is Rules of Prey, which follows a police officer as he investigates a series of murders in Minneapolis. The novel has been praised for its gripping narrative and complex characters.

How Successful Is John Sandford?

John Sandford’s work has earned him numerous awards over the years, including the Edgar Award for Best Novel for his book Invisible Prey. He continues to write thrilling stories that keep readers guessing until the very end.

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Noah Burton