Robert Sims Reid

Whatever happened to author Robert Sims Reid? He wrote a bunch of cop novels set in Montana but I don’t think he’s had a new book out in nearly  a decade…

I read his book RED CORVETTE a few years ago, liked it so much that I picked up everything Reid ever wrote, and then for some reason didn’t get back to him until last week, when something made me pack BIG SKY BLUES among the paperbacks to read in Hawaii.  I’m glad I did. James Crumley, in a cover blurb, called the book

"Perhaps the finest police novel I’ve ever read. I absolutely loved it. Wonderful writing, fine characters, and a great story.  Reid has taken the police novel out of the genre and into literature."

I wouldn’t go quite as far as Crumley, but I thought it was a great book. For all the hoo-hah about THE GUARDS, I thought BIG SKY BLUES was better. At least I enjoyed it a lot more. Although it was published back in ’88, it seems so much fresher than the cop novels I’ve read the last few years. For one thing, the hero isn’t an alcoholic loner on a path of self-destruction who’s hated by his bosses and inexplicably desired by women. The hero of BIG SKY BLUES is married with a teenage daughter and isn’t addicted to anything. And yet, he’s still a deeply troubled, complex character whose life is falling apart around him, particularly his relationships with his wife and his partner.

When I get home, I’m going to catch up on Reid’s other books…

2 thoughts on “Robert Sims Reid”

  1. I used to work with Bob back in the mid-80’s when I was one of his dispatchers. There was an article in the Missoula paper today about him – he’s leaving the police department and taking on the job of Director of Disaster and Emergency Services.. They mentioned he had produced 6 novels, it didn’t say anything about new books…
    I remember him as a great guy and a good cop… but damn, he looks so much older now… makes me skeered to look in the mirror!!

  2. I used to date Bob back in the mid-60’s and I never knew he had aspirations to be a writer or might have stuck around longer. I think his writing is great, especially The Red Corvette, because I think it has characters fashioned after high school friends. I think he should write more novels.


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