Created by John Camp

I always thought the KIDD series was unjustly neglected. A unique creation, particulary for its time, Kidd's a sort of high-tech scam artist/computer whiz/Travis McGee type with a very flexible set of ethics, one cracker of a hacker, and for a price, he'll make your trouble his business. He's a real slice, this Kidd. He takes on high-priced computer jobs that are sometimes, er, slightly less than legal to keep him in the lifestyle to which he's become accustomed. He's got a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering, and a master of fine arts in painting. He'd have a Ph.D in software design except he blew off the finals to go fishing. He's a karate expert and an accomplished amateur watercolour artist. He's not bad at good old fashioned breaking and entering, either. His past includes a stint with the Strategic Operations Group during Vietnam, and he often relies on tarot cards to solve his problems, although he's got his own way to rock there, too. Like I said, he's a slice.

His homebase is in Minnesota, and he has a handful of trusted friends he relies on, including his sometime-sweetie LuEllen, billed on the backcover of one of the books as a "beautiful spatial intrusion engineer" (burglar will do) and Dace, an information peddlar and reporter, but Kidd tends to play it pretty close to the vest.

The author is a respected journalist, even having won a Pulitzer for a series of stories about the Midwestern farm crisis, but he's most famous for his very popular Lucas Davenport detective series, about a sometime-Minneapolis detective who now owns a software game company. He left the police department under a cloud (so what else is new?). Camp writes the series under the pen name of John Sandford (the pseudonym comes from his father, Roswell Sandford Camp).

When I first wrote this entry, I mused about the unfortunate fact that the Davenport series had been so successful, and wished out loud that it would have been great to read more than the two recorded cases Camp (or Sandford) had left us with. Well, in 2000, after a nine-year break, Kidd has returned in The Devil's Code. And that's been followed recently by The Hanged Man's Song (2003). Recommended.



Report respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith. Thanks to SLNeuman for the reminder, and Gerald So for putting me straight.

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