Spur Award-winner Craig Johnson has garnered critical acclaim for his Walt Longmire mysteries. In this riveting seventh entry, Wyoming’s Absaroka County sheriff, Walt Longmire, is pushed beyond his limits.
When three hardened convicts escape FBI custody in a mountain blizzard, an armed psychopath leads them up Big Horn Mountain. As Longmire struggles to track their treacherous ascent, he’ll need all the help he can get from the tribal spirits of the towering summit.
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©2011 Craig Johnson (P)2011 Recorded Books, LLC
This is not my favorite Walt Longmire. I love them all and have recently began re-reading (or, more precisely, re-listening to) the series. I am a little bit in love with Walt Longmire (as read by George Guidall) and all Johnson's characters, but this one was, finally, tiresome.
I loved the premise: prisoner escapes during transport and takes hostages with lots of side stories. But why Walt felt this obsessive/compulsive desire to pursue the psychopath - who wasn't even in his custody - into a deadly blizzard is simply not convincing.
I enjoyed, as I always do, the wonderful humor Johnson brings to these books - he can make me laugh out loud - but in this case, it disappeared fairly early on.
The plot pretty much disappeared about 1/4 of the way in and the rest of the book is just about Walt's super-human endurance (he's over 50!) aided by some fairly unbelievable coincidences ... and one dead Indian.
Gone were almost all the wonderful characters that people Absaroka County and the res and the Sheriff's department and Durant, Wyoming. All we got to read was the nearly endless, slow, suffering of SuperWalt.
By the last 4 chapters, knowing full well that Walt was going to survive (get real - Johnson isn't going to kill him off!) I really just wanted it to be over with.
And even that was disappointing. I wish Johnson had given us more of a glimpse into the actual rescue of SuperWalt and on the reactions of Cady and Vic and Henry and Sancho and Rosie and everyone else and how they dealt with him. Instead, after all the painfully intricate detail (and more detail and more detail and...) of his ordeal, everyone else gets relegated to a short epilogue in which Walt is suddenly sitting on a chair in his back yard and Cady tells him what he already knows.
Definitely not my favorite but... yeah... I finished it anyway and now will move on. I love these books.
This story was especially interesting because it didn't follow the past formula. This was all about Walt and his relationship with the mountains, storms, Indian lore, and other phenomena. Secondary characters had very little roles in this book.
Plot involves escaped prisoners and Walt's pursuit into the mountains after them.
George Guidall continues to be the very best!
Most of the book is a harrowing description of Walt"'s near-death trek to catch a killer, and if miss the more social interaction in the other books, but I'm a fan to the end. I love these characters
I've turned around and immediately started listening to a series for a second time, except for this one!! There is something about the stories and the spot on narration that is just perfect abd I don't want them to end.
This is an interesting turn for the series, which has dealt a little with the metaphysical before, but not to this degree. On the surface this a story of a sheriff tracking escaped convicts though a blizzard in the mountains of Wyoming, but it's really about a sheriff challenging himself to face the elements of nature and of human nature. It's a time for a lot of personal change and contemplation for Walt since his daughter is about to get married, and that's only magnified by the solo time he spends fighting the escaped prisoners and the elements to stay alive. Does he have a spirit guide on the journey, or is it all a journey in his mind?
While the metaphysical might not be to everyone's liking and some readers will miss the involvement of the usual cast of characters (they're all there, but they're generally not a part of what's going on throughout the story), it's still an enjoyable and satisfying part of the Longmire series. Guidall, as usual, is spot-on perfect throughout.
Dept Q, Harry Hole... where are you?
This is a novel that covers a span of less than 72 hours in the life of Sheriff Walt Longmire. Longmire is helping the FBI transport convicted killers to a new prison. They are bushwhacked in the most desolate region of Wyoming during a huge snowstorm.
Longmire finds himself alone, first only tracking the killers. He ignores all protocol in fear of losing the trail, which lands him in a world of hurt. But he's not alone after all. An old friend apache friend, who may or may not be alive serves as a spirit guide of sorts. He has deep visions throughout the chase that guide him to truths he could never have discovered otherwise.
I like this series a lot. Perhaps it's just me being impatient, but this seemed like a short story stretched into a novel.
I’m a great big Walt Longmire/Craig Johnson/ George Guidall fan. I have enjoyed them all, but I love this one the most. This story has been on my mind, long after I finished it… which is the mark of a great story in my book. I would describe this one as mystery/thriller/modern western with American Indian mythology/spirituality and a bit of the paranormal.
In addition, Dante’s Inferno is very successfully woven into the story line.
Walt is really on his own most of the story, pursuing escaped and dangerous criminals through a snow storm in rough mountainous country. Virgil White Buffalo makes his appearance when the FBI (fans will know what that stands for) is needed most. We get much deeper insights into Vigils character and into an American Indian view of life and death.
I think writing this took a bit of courage on Mr. Johnson’s part. This one is not your typical Walt Longmire story and it would have probably been safer to stick with the successful formula. I for one found this to be a wonderful side trip in an excellent series.
Craig Johnson has a following for a good reason - the man can write great literature. If you have a taste for the classics and have read Dante's Inferno, or even know a bit about it then this effort by Mr. Johnson becomes all the more enjoyable. This is a great suspense novel, and an excellent literary exercise that succeeds on all fronts. If you have read the series from the start then this story will have more meaning as players from the other books have their own special place. Do not treat this as bad news if you have not read any of the other books as they are all excellent, this though is just a special treat with the backdrop of the inferno alive in the story. If you cannot tell I loved the book, one of the best I have read in a very long time and I listen to a lot of audio books. Mr. Johnson's effort here is worth a standing ovation.
I have been a fan from the first book to this one of Craig and George, Craig has a knack for capturing a truly dying breed of men and women and George has a knack for bringing them to life... For personal reasons this is my favorite book by Craig to date. If you have not listened to any of the Walt Longmire series and you like a little comedy with some hard core life and death situations, all of Craig's books are great. If you have never listened to a book narrated by George you are in for a huge treat. This is a wonderful book. Thanks again, both of you! Jean
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