The second entry in John Sandford's Prey series barrels along at the same breakneck pace as the first, Rules of Prey. It opens with the ritualistic murder of a Minneapolis slumlord by one of his Indian tenants. That is quickly followed by the similar slaying of three other men known for their prejudicial treatment of American Indians. Lucas Davenport is assigned to lead the investigation, but he's hampered by the fact that he has few contacts in the Indian community.
The killings are being orchestrated by two elderly Indian men known as the Crows, who have developed a plan to settle some long-standing scores, particularly with a high-level government official whom they are attempting to lure into their trap. But can Davenport and his colleagues foil the scheme before it comes to fruition?
The investigation pits Davenport against the Crows and their son, a particularly twisted man named Shadow Love. (Both of the Crows were sleeping with his mother when Shadow Love was conceived and so they both act as his father.) But Shadow Love has an agenda of his own and even the Crows may not be able to deal with him.
This is a high-energy novel with a lot of great scenes as well as the particular brand of humor that would come to mark this series. Davenport's character is still taking shape, but his love life is front and center here. He's still involved with Jennifer Carey, the mother of his infant daughter, but he's also enormously attracted to Lily Rothenberg, a New York cop who comes out to Minnestota to assist in the investigation. Complications will ensue.
The plot moves very swiftly, and the plot of Indians redressing their legitimate grievances in this fashion is unique and interesting. Rereading the book, it's also great fun to go back and see Lucas Davenport in the early stages of his development. It's hard to imagine that there's a fan of crime fiction out there somewhere who still has not stumbled across this series, but if you are that rare creature, do yourself a favor and check it out.