Kindness Goes Unpunished

by Craig Johnson

Paperback, 2008

Call number





Penguin Books (2008), Edition: Reprint, 336 pages


Fiction. Literature. Mystery. Western. HTML:Walt brings Western-style justice to Philadelphia in this action-packed thriller from the New York Times bestselling author of Land of Wolves Walt Longmire has been Sheriff of Absaroka County, Wyoming, for almost a quarter of a century, but when he joins his good friend Henry Standing Bear on a trip to the City of Brotherly Love to see his daughter, Cady, he's in for a shock. Walt hasn't even put his boots up when Cady is viciously attacked and left near death on the steps of the Franklin Institute. He soon discovers that she has unwittingly become involved in a deadly political cover-up. Backed by Henry, Dog, Deputy Victoria Moretti, and the entire Moretti posse of Philadelphia police officers, Walt unpacks his saddlebag of tricks to mete out some Western-style justice.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member DeltaQueen50
The third entry in the Walt Longmire series, Kindness Goes Unpunished by Craig Johnson, finds Walt accompanying his best friend Henry Standing Bear to Philadelphia. Henry is there to give a speech and set up an exhibition of Native American photographs. Walt is looking forward to visiting his
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daughter Cady and meeting her new boyfriend. Barely upon arrival Walt receives word that Cady has been attacked. She now lies in the hospital with a traumatic head injury. Walt, feeling helpless over her condition, is determined to find who is responsible, and his first visit is to the boyfriend.

I was a little concerned that the urban setting would be detrimental to this series, but I needn’t have worried. You can take Walt Longmire out of the west, but you cannot take the west out of Longmire. Wearing his cowboy hat and boots, relying on his trademark dry humor as much as his brawn, Walt strides the city streets and is well able to work alongside the Philadelphia police which includes various members of the Moretti family. With Henry and eventually Vic at his side, they unravel the various clues and find justice for Cady.

I am a big fan of this series, and the main character Walt Longmire is a huge reason why. This character jumps from the pages and is so real that it’s hard to realize that he comes from the imagination of a very talented author. In this third volume we are given a look at Walt’s softer side as we read of his anguish over his daughters condition. His romantic life grows by leaps and bounds and definitely will be something that the series needs to explore in future entries. Kindness Goes Unpunished is intelligent, witty, and totally captivating. Another winner is this great series.
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LibraryThing member reading_fox
Somehow I seem to have missed book 2. Didn't make any difference to the storyline, everything was explained in book1, and there's been little change.

Walt visits the Big City. It doesn't turn out well - obviously otherwise there wouldn't be much in the way of a plot, but also the writing and
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characters don't fit in so well either. A lot of the attitudes and coincidences that just about work out in the mountain boonies, just seem a bit bizarre in a city. Anyway, the pretext is that Standing Bear has an art show scheduled and Walt thinks it's a fine plan to tag along (with Dog) and meet up with his daughter, and her new "longterm" boyfriend. Sadly before they even meet, his daughter is involved in an incident, and is rushed unconscious to hospital. Walt is torn between standing by her side, and investigating - a role he knows full well belongs to the local cops. Of course this is the same city that his assistant Vic came from, and so he quickly makes some friends who don't look unkindly on him poking about the place. It soon turns out that Walt's dislike of the boyfriend, based on nothing but prejudice, has some grounds in reality too, but when he also turns up dead Walt has to both clear his name and find out what's really going on, and how his daughter was mixed up in it all.

If you can look past coincidences, ignore the size of the city, then it's a fun little crime puzzle with a native american twist (of course). The characters and the puzzle make it worth reading if you like cosy-ish (apart from one gratuitous graphic sex scene. I'll leave you to guess who, but given the prudishness of the 1st book, it was not an unexpected exaggeration of direction), crime stories. The title is a little odd, as it seems to contradict the normal phrasing and meaning, and there isn't really much kindness around.
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LibraryThing member clik4
Craig Johnson writes of Wyoming; of Wyoming characters with Wyoming voices. It makes for a fun read; the characters speak like people you are, or have met, that live in Wyoming and live the life. Johnson runs a cattle ranch out of Ucross, Wyoming and writes to “get this out of his system”. He
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claims to have a rich barrel of inspiration from living here and knowing eccentric characters.

Johnson spends a lot of time on the road, loves to talk about book with folks who don’t like to read and convinces his horses and dogs that he is John Steinbeck. His background is in law enforcement, hence his main character: Walt Longmire the town sheriff, but I get the impression that he enjoys having fun and loves what he is doing.
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LibraryThing member crazybatcow
I chuckled out loud a couple times in the first few pages. That is an excellent omen.

Have to say though, I really dislike dream-sequence scenes. Dreams don't mean anything in real life, why would they mean anything in fiction? Fortunately there were only a couple of these.

The plot is a bit
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convoluted, but ultimately Johnson does explain it all out, so you are not left trying to figure out how A led to B. Since I don't try to figure out plots before they unfold, I am glad that it was all summarized for me.

I did read the earlier books in the series, but that was awhile ago so I forget the age difference between Walt and Vic...I think it is significant, and, as such, there is a thread of un-believability in this book. But anyway.

My only real complaint is actually the number of characters. I am okay with the regulars (we already met them in earlier books) but there are a couple different bad guys, and some other characters that play a role, and it was actually a little difficult to keep them all straight.
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LibraryThing member delphimo
Craig Johnson seems to get better with each new book. This adventure centers in Philadelphia, the city of brotherly love, but the brotherly love city has left Walt's daughter,Cady, beaten and clinging to life. Walt and Henry have driven the convertible, Lola, from Wyoming to Pennsylvania for a
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presentation by Henry. As Walt and Henry try to help the local police, more bodies accumulate. Victoria Moretti's family joins in the investigation, as well as "Vic the Terror". The story centers on humor and relationships and honor, as well as a little mother-daughter competition. A fun novel.
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LibraryThing member ChrisConway
I thought the second Longmire book was weaker than the first, which I enjoyed tremendously. This third novel is a big let down and I'm starting to get frustrated and wonder if I'll continue. I love the characters and I love the feeling, the warmth that Johnson can generate, but this novel really
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bothered me. For one thing, I am really annoyed that Johnson had Longmire sleep with a certain character that is half his age. Give me a break. Secondly, I'm tired of cheap thrills, namely important characters getting shot. In the second book I was furious that Dog got shot and now this? On the strengths of the first novel in the series, I thought I was going to be a longtime fan. It has been years since I found a series that I felt like I could really get behind. I think Johnson should double down on realness and feeling and not try to gin up his books with fake stuff, such as Walt lusting after someone new, or another shoot out in which a main character gets shot. Walt should get a real girlfriend and start growing up. Johnson needs to make Vic more real and deep, instead of presenting her as a doll that talks dirty and blindly loves Walt. Henry should do something, anything, other than being a cardboard cut out of an Indian.
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LibraryThing member gbelik
In this 3rd outing of the Walt Longmire series, Walt travels with his Indian friend Henry to Philadelphia to visit Walt's daughter, who is seriously injured on his very first night there. In short order, her boyfriend is murdered and Walt is, naturally, knee-deep in the investigation. His deputy
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Victoria comes to Philadelphia to assist, and personal complications ensue (we all knew it was coming). I missed the Wyoming setting and didn't enjoy this one as much as I did previous outings.
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LibraryThing member bookswoman
The third installment in the Walt Longmire series takes Walt and Henry Standing Bear from their comfortable surroundings in Wyoming to the big city of Philadelphia. Walt is there to visit with his daughter Cady, while Henry is working to set up a display of Cheyenne photographs at a museum. As is
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usual where Walt goes, murder soon follows. He is forced to accept help from just about everyone he meets, Vic's family, Philadelphia cops and others. Sometimes when a series steps outside its comfortable surroundings it doesn't work but Craig Johnson manages to keep the pace and the voices of his characters as true in Philadelphia as they were in Wyoming. Highly Recommended.
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LibraryThing member auntieknickers
Sheriff Walt Longmire is a lawman in rural Wyoming. He's a widower, a Vietnam vet, and his best friend is an Indian; his only daughter lives in Philadelphia. This, the third of the series, finds Walt visiting Philadelphia and investigating the death of his daughter's ex-boyfriend. He is aided in
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his investigations by the family of his salty deputy, Vic (for Victoria) Moretti, and the family dynamics are fascinating. This was one of my Best Reads for 2007.
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LibraryThing member Finxy
Walt Longmire, Wyoming's Absaroka County Sheriff, is visiting his daughter in Philadelphia, killing two birds with one stone as he keeps his best friend Henry Standing Bear company setting up a cultural exhibition. Dog comes too. Walt has hardly had time to raid the freezer for a few bottles of
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Yuengling before he gets the news that his daughter has been in an incident that leaves her with a serious head injury. Investigating the incident seems to trigger a chain reaction of violence and dead bodies, along with a series of cryptic notes.
Walt also gets to meet Vic's family, though in typical Walt fashion, you know that old fashioned guy sort of fashion, it's Vic's mother who gets the most invitations to dinner. The mystery degenerates into a bit of Treasure Hunt following those notes and Walt really needs to take more care with his physical wellbeing and stop getting run over or having bits shot off. Even among all the city folk he manages to keep a hold of his wry humour, along with the cowboy hat. It's not all about the fisticuffs and firearms though; there's a well played running theme about friendship and the love between father and daughter with a touching little pay-off set up in the first chapter and cashed in during the epilogue.
This is your classic fish out of water escapade. It's Tarzan's New York Adventure, Sherlock Holmes in Washington,.... well maybe not but maybe it could be an episode of McCloud. "There ya go!"
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LibraryThing member SunnySD
The sheriff of Absaroka County, WY has no official standing in the City of Brotherly love - he's there to visit his daughter Cady, meet his prospective in-laws, and lend support to his friend Henry's museum opening. But when a vicious attack leave Cady in a coma and the body count starts to pile
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up, Walt isn't about to go home.

Wasn't so thrilled with the whole Moretti love triangle thing, but otherwise a decent read.
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LibraryThing member ethel55
Walt heads East with Henry Standing Bear on a road trip to Philly to visit his daughter Cady while Henry sets up a photography exhibit. Cady is attacked and Walt becomes involved in an ongoing police investigation, aided by several of the Moretti clan. Johnson has created such a rich, complex world
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and set of characters that fill my head even when I'm not reading one of their stories. As tough as it is, I am trying to ration the ensuing books, and hope to last at least a week or two before picking up number 4. And in some sort of Staben like six degrees, I've recommended the series to four people, two of which have already started reading them as well.
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LibraryThing member SandyLee
Walt Longmire heads to Philadelphia with his friend, Henry Standing Bear, to visit Cady and meet her boyfriend, Devon Conliffe. But Walt no sooner sets foot in town when Cady is viciously attacked and left in a coma. Devon is suspected but he allegedly has an alibi. Not long after Walt corners
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Devon at a baseball game Devon’s body is found. Someone had tossed him off of a bridge. The police question Walt but this Wyoming sheriff can teach the PPD a thing or two about police work. One thing Walt’s deputy, Vic Moretti, had asked him to do was invite her mother to lunch with him and Cady. The entire Moretti family are cops, except Lena, Vic’s mother. She is a stunning Italian woman with a sharp wit and a soft heart. As in the preceding books, Henry gives the reader insight into the Native American culture and rituals. He is in town to give a presentation at the Museum of Native American History. While Walt tries to look through Cady’s case files to determine who might want to do her harm, someone is leaving him messages. Devon’s death is somehow connected to a drug gang and Oz, a friend of Devon’s, is next on the cartel’s list. Vic shows up to help and her relationship with Walt takes a welcome turn. This is a complex plot that takes time for Walt to sort out but he eventually does with more injuries and bruises to add to his battered body. Even with all that is taking place in Philadelphia, one of the best scenes was the first chapter when Walt had to read to a kindergarten class. Classic Craig Johnson.
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LibraryThing member terran
I enjoyed this entry in the series even more than the first two, even though Walt was away from his Wyoming stompin' grounds. His relationships with the Cheyenne Nation, his daughter, and Vic just keep getting better. I especially enjoy his repartee, introspection, and the understanding he has of
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LibraryThing member ccayne
This series is great as audiobooks. In this outing, Longmire and his friends end up in Philadelphia for a social outing but, of course, they end up mired in the darker side of life. Johnson once again blends good character development with humor and mayhem for a satisfying read/listen. This series
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has become the ideal blend for road trips with my husband.
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LibraryThing member jenforbus
In KINDNESS GOES UNPUNISHED, the third book from Craig Johnson's Walt Longmire series, Walt and Henry Standing Bear are traveling to Philadelphia. Henry is going to display his photo collection in an art show and Walt goes along to visit his daughter, Cady. Before Walt even sees Cady in
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Philadephia, she is viciously attacked and left for dead. While Walt and his friends rotate a vigil watching over Cady in the hospital, the investigation into who harmed Cady and why ensues. Despite being a "stranger in a strange land" Walt is determined to find justice for Cady.

Craig Johnson is one of those authors who writes a book that leaves me thinking, "wow! This is amazing. But, now there's nowhere for him to go from here. You can't get better than perfection." KINDNESS GOES UNPUNISHED topped perfection. I'm reading the series in order, so I've now read books one through three. I love each and every one of them, but KINDNESS GOES UNPUNISHED is definitely my favorite. Walt has always been an extraordinarily REAL character. It would not surprise me in the least to run into this man on the street. But in his third adventure Walt's relationship with his daughter added another amazing dimension to his already life-like existence. A large part of Walt's existence is defined by his relationships with his friends and family. Because of the strength of those relationships, Walt is also left vulnerable when it comes to them - they are his Achilles heel, and no where has that been more evident than in KINDNESS GOES UNPUNISHED when someone harms Walt's only child.

But, rest assured. Even though a major trauma has occurred, Walt did not lose his sense of humor.

KINDNESS GOES UNPUNISHED introduces us to Vic's family who all live in Philadelphia. While Vic doesn't initially travel with Walt and Henry to the City of Brotherly Love, she does ride in when Sheriff Walt is in need of his deputy. And her presence in the midst of her family adds another dimension to her character as well. The dysfunction of the Moretti family creates a sharp contrast to the relationships of the Absaroka County family.

As with the two books before this, Johnson takes his characters through a plot of amazing proportions that changes each of them in significant ways. I can't imagine a reader traveling alongside the characters and not changing him/herself as well. I know I was a different person as a result.

KINDNESS GOES UNPUNISHED is nothing short of spectacular.
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LibraryThing member fordbarbara
This book is set in Philadelphia, which just didn't draw me. There is a good sex scene though!
LibraryThing member cathyskye
Protagonist: Sheriff Walt Longmire
Setting: present-day Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Series: #3

First Line: I didn't wear my gun.

Walt is on a trip to Philadelphia to visit his lawyer daughter, Cady, but the evening he arrives, Cady is critically injured and rushed to the hospital. She's in a coma, and
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Walt sets aside helping his friend, Henry Standing Bear, with an art exhibit to try to find who did this to her. Just when he's about to close in on Cady's fiance as the culprit, the young man is killed, and now Walt really wants to get to the bottom of this mess.

Although it was rather strange to see Walt out of his beloved Big Horn Mountains of Wyoming, it was good to see how he behaved in strange territory. Walt kept his cowboy hat on his head, but (mostly) played nice with the Philadelphians. He's no fool. Walt knew he had to get along with the local police so the crime could be solved. What was, and continues to be, so very good about this series isn't just the plot, but all the complex interactions of the characters. We get to see Walt as a daddy whose little girl might die, and we get to see how the cavalry gallops in to help him. It's almost impossible for me to believe that these characters aren't real--that's how good Johnson is. I've read many mysteries of the lone-wolf-as-savior variety and liked them. However, I think that a book of this type showing a man and his friends and family and how they all love, respect and support each other would be more difficult to write, and ultimately more satisfying to read. Perhaps it's the latent John Donne in me. No man is an island.... Walt Longmire is no island, and we readers are much the richer for it.
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LibraryThing member ecw0647
This book, #3 in the Longmire series, has a marvelous first sentence: “ I should have brought my gun.” Gradually, it’s revealed that he’s reading a Grimm’s Fairy Tale to some first graders. “My dad thinks you’re a butthole,” chimes in one. “You shoulda brought your gun,” says
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Walt and Henry (and Dog) travel to Philadelphia to meet Walt’s daughter Kate’s boyfriend and his family. Since Vic is also from Philadelphia, Walt uses the opportunity to visit with her mother. Henry is participating in a Native American art exhibit at the Art Museum. Before he gets a chance to see her, Katie is badly injured in a fight with her boyfriend who seems to be disliked by virtually everyone. Then the boyfriend takes a flying leap off the Benjamin Franklin bridge. And the bodies begin to pile up.

One little tidbit I picked up was that American Indians intensely dislike the white name for them: “Native Americans,” since they don’t consider themselves American. At least according to Craig Johnson who should know, I guess.

George Guidall does his usual fine job of narration. EXCEPT for one HUGE mispronunciation that I have heard from other readers of books that take place in Philadelphia. The Schuylkill River is pronounced “schoo-kill” although the official pronunciation is “school-kill” but definitely *not* “sky-kill,” as anyone who grew up in the area knows full well.

Couple problems I had with this book that made it less interesting than the others of the series I’ve read. Moving characters out of their home territory into an alien environment is always tricky. Walt is smart, granted, but on occasion he outsmarts the Philadelphia cops without even knowing the city. The business with Vic in front of her mother was a bit ridiculous. The Indian medicine ceremony in the ICU was absurd. Still, Johnson’s books have a nice mix of humor and character interaction.

I would recommend reading this series in order. In this title particularly, if you don’t know the characters and some of their backstory, you might be a little flummoxed.
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LibraryThing member cbl_tn
The third book in the Walt Longmire series finds the sheriff on a road trip with his friend Henry Standing Bear, who has been invited to lecture at the Pennsylvania Academy for the Fine Arts in Philadelphia. The trip will provide Walt with the opportunity to see his daughter, Cady, who works for a
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Philadelphia law firm, and to meet her new boyfriend. He'll also have an opportunity to meet deputy Vic Moretti's family, most of whom are Philadelphia cops. Nothing goes as planned when Cady is attacked and left in a coma. Vic's mother and brothers step in to help Walt stand vigil at the hospital as well as to catch Cady's attacker. Walt and Vic's mother seem to be hitting it off well, until Vic unexpectedly shows up.

I didn't like this book as well as the first two books. Part of the attraction of this series is its Wyoming setting, and it was largely absent in this book. After Vic showed up, I kept wondering who was keeping crime under control back in Absaroka County with Walt and his best deputy in Philadelphia. Oddly, Vic seems just as out of place in her hometown as she does in Wyoming. Henry is one of my favorite characters in the series. I had hoped to see more of him in this book since he was one of the three regular characters in Philly (not counting Dog), but he seemed to appear less than usual. I wonder if the author is a fan of McCloud? I kept thinking of Dennis Weaver as Longmire confronted criminals on the streets of Philadelphia. I'll look forward to having the Sheriff back in Absaroka County when the series continues.
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LibraryThing member hailelib
I'm really enjoying this series and Kindness Goes Unpunished was another good entry although I think I prefer Walt on his home ground since a lot ot the secondary characters from Absaroka County were barely mentioned. Still, we do learn something about his daughter's life even though she spends
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nearly the whole novel in the hospital and we get a tour of some of Philadelphia's historical outdoor sculptures. There is also the extended Moretti family which comes to Walt's aid in discovering just who was responsible for Cady's injury. I did wonder just what Walt and Henry were thinking when they brought Dog along to the big city without checking with Cady first.

Looking forward to the next in the series.
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LibraryThing member linusnc
This is a great book. I love the father daughter relationship in this one. Show how much a father loves a daughter. Loved this one.
LibraryThing member tsmom1219
Walt Longmire and Henry Standing Bear bring the West to Philadelphia. Another terrific addition to the series.
LibraryThing member waldhaus1
The character development of the Longmire stories is definitely improved. The events happen in Philadelphia a change of pace and some new characters are introduced. I feel I am getting to know the characters well enough I want to read the sequels to learn more about them.
Indians/native Americans
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continue to play a central role in the story. Perhaps that is to help keep in tied to Wyoming.
The story even features a Wyoming valley in Pennsylvania.
Longmire continues to collect injuries - that is getting old.
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LibraryThing member JBreedlove
A very good read with lots of moving parts that work well and only a little corny about Cowboys and Indians in the big city. All the characters were real and the action and dialogue real and witty. But once again there were spots that didn't quite mesh and some edits were missed. I'm sure amongst
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the rest of the series there is a 4.5.
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