Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Sam Reaves  

Pen Name: None


Born: Crawfordsville, Indiana

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Illinois Connection

Sam Reaves is the pen name for Samuel Salter.

Biographical and Professional Information

Sam Reaves has lived in Chicago or its environs for most of his life. He has also lived and traveled widely in Europe, Latin America and the Middle East. He has worked as a teacher and a translator. His Sam Reaves books are set in Chicago.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

Long Cold Fall
ISBN: 0399135650

Putnam Adult. 1991

The first book in the Cooper MacLeish series, Sam Reaves's debut novel recounts how MacLeish, a Vietnam veteran and Chicago taxi driver, hears of the apparent suicide of a former lover and, investigating, discovers not only that her missing son may be his but also that the suicide hypothesis doesn't hold water.

Fear Will Do It
ISBN: 0399137246

Putnam Adult. 1992

Vietnam vet and Chicago cabbie Cooper MacLeish is drawn, along with his girlfriend, into a deadly blackmail scheme against a brutal pornography czar, and the two find themselves the targets of a cold-blooded enforcer and his sadistic sidekick.

Bury It Deep
ISBN: 0380722666

Avon Books. 1994

Accompanying a friend to a midnight rendezvous with a nervous informant, Chicago cabbie and sometime investigator Cooper MacLeish finds the contact's dead body instead, and uncovers a scandalous conspiracy involving dirty politics and the mob. Reprint.

Get What's Coming
ISBN: 0399140182

Putnam Adult. 1995

Now working as a chauffeur for wealthy developer Regis Swanson, ex-cabbie and Vietnam vet Cooper MacLeish finds himself in the middle when Swanson's son is shot in a murky affair that draws attention from the DEA on one side and a couple of stone killers on the other. Once again it will be up to Cooper to fix things, at the risk of his life.

Dooley's Back: A Novel of Crime (Otto Penzler Books)
ISBN: 0786710942

Carroll & Graf. 2002

Dooley is not back even a day, and already he’s helped a gangland punk with a switchblade in his hand and rape on his mind to a deadly fall. And throughout this gritty, hard-boiled crime novel by a master of the new noir, fists work fast, the talk comes tough, and pages turn as swiftly as the rip of a hitman’s bullet. Frank Dooley used to be a Chicago cop, but eight years ago a case of homicide prompted him to take the law into his own hands—the victim was his wife—and then head south, to Mexico. Dooley’s return is met by everyone with surprise, and by a few with pleasure. Like his old partner Roy Ferguson. Roy has had some weighty problems of his own. His seven-year-old son has drowned, he’s gone through a nasty divorce, and a serious gambling habit has buried him deep in debt. Dangerously deep for an over-ambitious loan shark with the mob, John Spanos, is taking the juice on Roy’s $15,000 score in favors. Dooley convinces Roy he should own up to what he’s done, set up a sting on Spanos, and maybe get back his integrity as a cop. It’s a good plan, but it goes very bad, and Dooley soon finds himself caught perilously between the police force he deserted on one side and the Outfit Roy betrayed on the other. This is a tough-edged urban novel of crime and suspense. “The hard-boiled fraternity has a new member, and he’s a good one.”—Booklist “Gritty, fast-paced, satisfying.”—Publishers Weekly

Homicide 69
ISBN: 0786718129

Carroll & Graf. 2006

It's the summer of 1969, and veteran Chicago homicide detective Mike Dooley is investigating the brutal torture-murder of a young woman. The victim is a former Playboy bunny and mobster’s girlfriend. Dooley suspects this is more than a sex killing, which leads him into the deep waters of mob intrigue and political corruption.

The Night Watch is a gripping novel about a man, his family and his times. As Dooley, whose own youth was sacrificed in the Pacific in World War II, scans the news for hopeful portents regarding his son Kevin, a Marine in the thick of the fighting in Vietnam, he sees the world changing before his eyes. The moon landing, Woodstock, the Manson murders, and riots in the streets provide a backdrop for the personal and professional crises precipitated by Dooley’s stubborn refusal to give up on a crime nobody but him wants solved.



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