The Cold Dish: A Longmire Mystery

by Craig Johnson

Paperback, 2006

Call number

MYST JOH

Collection

Genres

Publication

Penguin Books (2006), 400 pages

Description

After decades of peace between the white and Native American communities of early American Wyoming, a young man who was once convicted for raping a Cheyenne girl is found dead, prompting sheriff Walt Longmire, his deputy Victoria Moretti, and friend Henry Standing Bear to investigate.

User reviews

LibraryThing member Crazymamie
This book was so much fun. I loved the main character, Sheriff Walt Longmire. He seems to be an eclectic mix of Clint Eastwood and Andy Griffith - he gets the job done sometimes by force and sometimes by homegrown savvy. He knows how to do his job, and he doesn't pull any punches, and yet, at the
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end of the day, he is lost. His personal life has been on hold since his wife died four years earlier, and he is haunted by the injustice of the inadequate sentencing of the defendants in a rape case that he helped bring to trial a few years ago. Things are about to get interesting, though, because Walt's daughter, his best friend, and his secretary have hatched a plot to stir him from his self imposed exile. Oh, and Cody Pritchard, one of the defendants from that haunting rape case, has just been found dead - murdered. Is this a case of revenge - a dish best served cold - or something else altogether?

The very best part of this book are the characters which are fully drawn and articulated. The dialogue is crisp and gritty and full of humor. This cast of quirky and diverse individuals reminded me of the tv show Northern Exposure - remember that one? Except the setting is Wyoming, not Alaska, and the main character is a sheriff, not a doctor. Longmire is not new to the community like the doctor was, he is a fixture of this ranching world and he knows how to navigate the waters very well. What is so much fun is watching him do it. His best friend, Henry Standing Bear, is not to be missed. Johnson could write an entire book based just on Henry's character because he is no mere sidekick. I am so glad that this book is just the first in a series because I cannot wait to get back to Absaroka County.

"He closed the door, and I watched him saunter toward the court. The word insouciance was invented for Henry and, against it, the teenage version suffered. The Bear was doing vintage James Dean, and it made the boys look like a bunch of basketball-playing Pat Boones."
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LibraryThing member jenforbus
Walt Longmire is the sheriff of Absaroka County in Wyoming, a place where everyone knows your name and probably your business. Walt's been a widower for three...no four years now. His home is worse than a bachelor pad, his deputy Vic is forever giving him a hard time about being overweight, and
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there's mouse droppings on his cooking utensils.

Despite the fact that Walt's life seems to be in a shambles, the people of Absaroka County like Walt, especially his good friend and Cheyenne Indian Henry Standing Bear. As a matter of fact, there's a small conspiracy going on between Henry, Cady (Walt's adult daughter), and Ruby (Walt's strong-willed secretary) to coax Walt back into the swing of life.

But a murder throws a wrench in that plan. Cody Pritchard, Jacob and George Esper and Brian Keller were convicted a few years earlier of raping and assaulting a young Cheyenne Indian girl, Melissa, who suffered from Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. The were convicted by served measly sentences. Many people in the community and on the Cheyenne Reservation were disgusted with the outcome of the trial, and the outcome haunts Walt. So, when Cody Pritchard winds up shot to death and shortly thereafter Jacob succumbs to the same fate, Walt has to figure out who of the multitude of suspects is behind the murders and protect both George and Brian from ending up like Cody and Jacob. The hardest part for Walt is the fact that Henry, Melissa's "uncle", is a prime suspect.

Had there been no plot to this story whatsoever, I probably would have been mesmerized all the same. The characters are some of the richest I've seen in a long time. By the time I reached the end of the novel, I wanted to go live in Absaroka County with them! Walt is just plain fun. There's no question why his constituents like him. He's kind and fair and aims to do the "right" thing. He's not perfect, and his altercation with Turk highlights that. Turk assaulted Jules, an old drunk man, while putting Jules in jail for peeing on him. Walt simply lost his control and assaulted Turk. While his actions are ironic, I had trouble feeling any sympathy for Turk. But Ruby was furious with Walt and even threatened to quit because she was disgusted with his behavior. And Walt was embarrassed for it. Me, I was cheering for him!

I love Walt, but I often have a special affinity for the supporting character in a duo-type story. I'm very fond of Henry in this book. He is an incredibly rich character. His sarcastic humor is phenomenal. I was almost in tears laughing at various parts in this novel, and they usually involved something Henry was saying. And Henry often ends up being the sarcastic voice of reason when Walt starts getting carried away.

All the characters in this novel are fascinating: Vic, Lucien, Omar, Jules, Ruby, George, Vonnie, Dena, Melissa and Lonnie Little Bird...yes, it is so. Johnson has a knack for breathing realism into his characters and bringing them to life for the reader. Their interactions with each other add a whole additional level of complexity to the novel. In and of themselves they would each be great characters but the relationships between them make them extraordinary characters.

But characterization isn't his only skill. Absaroka County is a tiny little place in Wyoming where very little out of the ordinary happens. This fact is reinforced when Vic is giving her crime updates to Walt at various times throughout the novel.

The element I enjoyed the most was the intertwining of the Cheyenne Indian culture. I've always been fascinated by mythologies. So, I thought Chapter 12 was beyond brilliant. It was moving and it carried a completely different tone than the rest of the novel. There was obvious and utter respect emanating from this chapter.

I was entranced for the entire chapter, more accurately the remainder of the book. This book made me laugh, made me cry, and made me think. I loved it. I just simply can't say enough wonderful things to do this book justice. If you haven't checked it out, I highly recommend you do so.
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LibraryThing member Finxy
Walt Longmire is the Sheriff of Absaroka county in Wyoming beneath the shadow of the Big Horn Mountains. He's marking time until his retirement, mourning the loss of his wife while he drinks himself to sleep each night in front of a tv with a speciality for static in a half built cabin.
When the
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body of Cody Pritchard is found, seemingly shot by an antique rifle, Walt has to shake off his doldrums to discover the killer. Because Cody Pritchard was one of four boys who raped a young Cheyenne girl and then got off almost unpunished. With most of the population of the county in the suspect frame, including Walt's best friend and most of his colleagues this wasn't the retirement run he was looking for.
I'm definitely going to be checking out the rest of this series. Absaroka is, according to Walt, one of the places people plan all their life to retire to... and then pack up for Florida after feeling the bite of their winter. The cast is largely of a certain vintage with Walt himself being a big guy with a long history behind him. The sense that the characters have all lived a life with plenty of stories to be told is one of the constants throughout the narrative with the author (Craig Johnson) filling us in with Walt's wry wit and self deprecating voice as the plot pushes forward. The natural and sometimes treacherous beauty of the region mixed with both real and fictional local history, Cheyenne culture and spirituality makes for a very palatable tasty feast of a crime novel.
I knew nothing of the tv series when I first picked this up but I'll probably have to add Longmire to my to watch list.
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LibraryThing member delphimo
I was thrilled when our book club chose this book set in Wyoming. Also, a member suggested that a made for television series portrays Walt Longmire. I started reading the book, and felt that maybe if I watched one of the episodes, I would better understand the book. The series is terrible. The
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portrayal of Vic, one of the deputies, is miserable. In the novel, Vic is a street-smart cop from Philadelphia. In the television series, Vic is a bumbling idiot. Johnson goes to great lengths to show his literature intelligence by inserting various forgotten authors in Walt Longmire's musings. I felt that Walt is too wordy, and his thoughts too rambling. For a mystery written for Wyoming, the action is tepid and scant. The ending was a surprise, but the rest of the novel dragged.
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LibraryThing member cbl_tn
Walt Longmire is marking time until he can retire as sheriff of Absaroka County,Wyoming. His co-workers and friends have tolerated the annoying bachelor habits he's developed since the death of his wife, but they're beginning to hint (not so subtly) that it's time for him to move on. He doesn't
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protest too much when his best friend, Henry Standing Bear, fixes him up with a beautiful, wealthy single neighbor. However, their budding romance must wait while Sheriff Longmire leads an investigation into the murder of a local youth. The young man was one of four involved in the rape of a Cheyenne teenager with fetal alcohol syndrome. There are some in the community, both on and off the reservation, who believe the boys were punished too lightly for their crime. Has someone taken up where the legal system is believed to have failed?

Although this is a character-driven story, there is plenty of action for readers who prefer plot-driven novels. There's just enough humor to keep the atmosphere from becoming unbearably depressing. Johnson gets the relationship between Longmire and Standing Bear just right. Their conversations are made up of the kind of back and forth that is characteristic of long years of familiarity and shared experiences, with an unstated undercurrent of deep affection and trust. I feel like the characters are real people in a real place, and if I went to Wyoming I'd find them there. This is one of those rare books I hated to finish because I didn't want my time with the characters to end. Fortunately, I have several more books in the series waiting for me!
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LibraryThing member Stevejm51
"The Cold Dish" is a character-driven novel with a wonderful sense of place -- the lonely plains and mountains of Wyoming. The mystery takes a back seat to a laconic sheriff and his Indian buddy. Who cares about the mystery. All I wanted to do was sit back listen to these guys talk to each other.
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Great stuff.
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LibraryThing member LiteraryFeline
I love a good mystery. I remember the first time I read a Sue Grafton novel; I knew there was no going back. Kinsey Milhone had an edge about her and there was a grittiness and realism to the novels that instantly pulled me in. They were funny in on offbeat sort of way, just the kind of humor I
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like. Michael Connelly’s novels also come to mind. I had the same experience reading Craig Johnson’s The Cold Dish. That isn’t to say the series are alike—if you don’t like one, don’t count out the others until you have given one or the other a try.

Walt Longmire is the sheriff of Absaroka County in Wyoming, a relatively quiet and mostly rural community with only an occasional disturbance. Not many people mourn when the body of Cody Pritchard is discovered. He, along with three of his friends, had been convicted of brutally assaulting a young Native American girl, Melissa Little Bird years before. The boys were let off with suspended sentences at the time, something that did not sit well with quite a few people. Could Cody’s death have been a hunting accident or was it murder, perhaps an act of revenge or something else altogether?

Walt is joined by a cast of supporting characters that stand out on their own. Among them is Walt’s best friend, Henry Standing Bear, who is determined to get Walt back in shape and moving on with his life, realizing his friend has fallen into a rut. Walt’s foul-mouthed but extremely competent deputy, Victoria Moratti is a good match for the sheriff. The former sheriff, Lucian, despite his penchant for throwing political correctness out the window, was among my favorites as was the mother-like Ruby, the dispatcher/secretary at the sheriff’s office. She said what was on her mind and let Walt have it when he deserved it most. As for Sheriff Walt Longmire himself, he has seen a lot in his lifetime, having served in the military during the Vietnam War and more recently losing his wife to cancer. There’s a strength about him as well as a generosity of spirit. He seems like the kind of man I would want to have as sheriff in my own town as well as a friend.

Craig Johnson paints a breathtaking picture of Wyoming with the harsh wintry weather, the beautiful mountains and lakes as well as the ranch and reservation lands that are stretched out over the county where the novel is set. He shows the diversity of the land as well as of the people. He also touches upon the past and current tensions between the Native Americans and the white folk, weaving it throughout the book.

It is a rare treat when I can read straight through a mystery and not figure out the end before the protagonist does. Craig Johnson succeeds in doing just that though. The Cold Dish had me both chuckling now and then and, near the end, shedding a tear or two. I am looking forward to spending more time with Sheriff Longmire in the near future.
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LibraryThing member cathyskye
Protagonist: Sheriff Walt Longmire
Setting: present-day Absaroka County, Wyoming
Series: #1

First Line: "Bob Barnes says they got a dead body out on BLM land."

Walt Longmire, the veteran sheriff of Absaroka County, Wyoming, usually has little to do on his patrols. When Cody Pritchard is found shot to
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death near the Cheyenne reservation, everyone, including Deputy Victoria Moretti, a transplanted Philadelphian, believes he died in an accident. But two years earlier, Cody was one of four high schoolers convicted of raping a young Native American girl. All were given suspended sentences, and when another of the four turns up dead, it appears that someone is out for revenge.

Thank you to all those friends who recommended this book--I loved it! It was the perfect blend of setting, humor, seriousness, and characterization. I only have two small bones to pick with it. One, I think the writing could've used a bit of tightening to up the suspense, and two--I twigged to the Bad Guy too early due to a strong reaction that person had to something. It's going to be very difficult to keep myself from buying the rest of the books in this series--it's a winner!
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LibraryThing member Yahdley
Johnson's book centers around the murder of a young man in a small town. A crime difficult to solve because no one is sorry to see the victim dead, including Sherrif Longmire. Behind the narrative is a larger question of what is left behind when a part of you is killed. The individuals and also the
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groups in this story have all suffered brutal losses in different ways at different times. What does that do to the compassion and ethics of a person, or town, or tribe? The story doesn't answer the question -- but, more satisfyingly, it sets it in motion in the minds of its characters who must reconsider themselves and one another in the light of a new tragedy
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LibraryThing member DabOfDarkness
Set in Absaroka County, Wyoming, Sheriff Walt Longmire is having to deal with a dead body. He rather be drinking. Before long, another body turns up. Four years before, 4 boys were given a suspended sentence for rape of a mentally handicapped Cheyenne girl. Since two of them have turned up dead in
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a short amount of time, Walt revisits that old case for suspects to the recent murders.

There’s a lot of great characters in this book along with a complex mystery. First, let’s talk characters. Walt himself is an interesting man. He has a keen wit, but rarely feels the need to flash it about. He knows a well-timed silence can bring him more information than blathering on. Four years prior to the setting of this book, he lost his wife. He’s still mourning her in some ways. However, his best friend since childhood, Henry Standingbear, feels it is time for him to clean up, work out, start dating, and complete the final touches on his cabin on the outskirts of town. Henry and Walt served together in Vietnam, and Henry knows just how far he can push Walt when. For the reader, Henry is also a bridge between two cultures (American and Cheyenne). the humor displayed between these two often lightens a dark moment, or adds a touch of poignancy to a dire situation.

There’s plenty of women in this book and while they are all side characters, they have their own personalities and agendas. Overall, they are well written. However, I will say that I find it convenient and a bit amusing that all the women in the book (with the one exception of a mother I can think of and Walt’s daughter) are drawn romantically to either Walt or Henry. Still, I look forward to seeing how the women fare in the rest of the series.

The setting seems to be 1990s, though I might be off about that. There’s computers and a few cell phones, etc. However, I think Walt and Henry are in their 50s, and they both served in the Vietnam war. So, maybe late 1990s. If you have watched the TV series, Longmire, then you will have noticed that the TV series is set in modern times. No matter the year this book is set in, it is a modern-day Western. I really enjoyed the setting as it is somewhat like New Mexico, where I live. Lots of folks are hunters, own guns, plenty of space between homes and farms, and quite often a person can find themselves without backup in an emergency situation.

The murder mystery itself had some twists and turns and I was not expecting. Having it coupled to the older crime of the rape 4 years previously gave the murder mystery some depth. First, Walt had to determine if the two deaths were related to the older crime. If they were, he had a list of suspects. If they weren’t, then he had to find the motive before he could figure out suspects. One by one, his list of suspects dwindles. The ending was a bit of a surprise to me. However, the author did a good job of showing through Walt’s eyes how he missed the clues in front of him.

I’ll definitely be continuing this series. Mostly, it is the characters that drew me in and held me. They each have some flaw in their character that makes them human and easy to connect with. I am very curious to see where the author takes these characters that I grew attached to in such a short amount of time.

The Narration: George Guidall was a good fit for Walt Longmire, through whose eyes the story is told. Guidall is not always my favorite narrator as he has a limited range. for this book, he put it to good use. However, most of his female voices sound very similar to begin with and over the course of the book lose their individuality.
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LibraryThing member crazybatcow
First scene has the main character drinking a six pack then hopping in his truck and heading to a bar, then getting a call (he's a cop) and driving out to a crime scene. I'm not sure if the author has intended to normalize drinking and driving (there is no moralistic comment on this topic), or if
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it's reflective of the area (Wyoming) or the generation (older). Or perhaps this is just how this sheriff will be developed. Anyway, it seemed kinda weird.

The book has a lot of pages, but the actual plot/mystery is pretty short. A lot of time is spent exploring the main character and his immediate friends and environs. Knowing this is a series helps because if you're going to end up spending time with Walt in future books, all this insight to him is great. He's not perfect but he is fully fleshed.

That being said... the story moves very slowly and there are a LOT of characters which are sometimes hard to tell apart. And the ending has one of those twists that was rather out of the blue...

I will probably read the next in the series, but will hope that it's a bit more suspenseful than this one.
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LibraryThing member DeltaQueen50
The Cold Dish is an excellent start to a series of crime novels revolving around Walt Longmire, sheriff of Absaroka Country in Wyoming. Although the country seat of Durant doesn’t seem to exist, the author pretty much pinpoints the areas as just east of the Big Horns, near the Powder River Basin
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and south of the Cheyenne Indian Reservation at Lame Deer. Ranch country.

This character driven novel has all the ingredients that I look for in a crime story. An intriguing mystery, interesting characters that I want to know more about, with lots of space for the series to grow. Walt’s relationships with the women in his life is fresh and realistic. Walt looks to these women for honesty and realness, from his foul mouthed deputy to the woman who runs the local dinner, these relationships allow you to get inside and see both the man and the sheriff. The book is worth reading simply for the interaction between Walt and his best friend, Indian bartender Henry. I found myself chuckling out loud a few times.

What takes the book to a higher level than many crime stories is the calibre of the writing. His descriptive prose allows you to breath the crisp fall Wyoming air. His dialogues feel realistic and true, allowing you to see the laid back Western neighbourliness while at the same time giving you a sense of the political and cultural differences that lie between the white community and the native Americans.

After one book, I can say I am a fan of Craig Johnson’s. I look forward to reading more of his work.
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LibraryThing member KurtWombat
There are many things I like. Some I like because they are good. Some are easy. Some are pleasant. Some like me back. Then, some things just fit. I like them because they fit and I find myself not even thinking about why. Growing up, I loved all kinds of movies--Swashbucklers, Crime Noir, Musicals,
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Costumers and Biographies and more. But the genre that fit me best was Westerns. Especially the ones with the heroes of few words played against sprawling natural vistas that spoke volumes about what it meant to do the right thing, to be the hero. And despite changing fashions and tastes in the intervening decades since I so raptly watched Gary Cooper, James Stewart and John Wayne, the love of that Western sensibility has remained, though often buried, a part of me. I think that is why when I first saw the ads for the TV series Longmire I felt that I had been there before. And when the show went on hiatus I sought out the books. Craig Johnson captures what I was drawn to, am drawn to. The quiet understood bond between old friends. Drawing strength from the lands where you live and paying back that tab with the understanding that your spirit belongs to the land. Across this the author plays out the crimes of men creating a kind of western noir alternating the high lonesome of the Wyoming mountains with the kind of shadows that can only come from neon lit saloons where the clients pour down their troubles and then look for more. THE COLD DISH is a marvelous introduction to Walt Longmire with equal parts humor and tragedy, the former as a brace against the latter.
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LibraryThing member magnumpigg
Just bought and read this book (Nov 2009) and, wow, what a treat. Has great locale told with depth and heart. Fully developed characters: the good are not always good and the bad are not always bad. Some snappy dialogue. And I really like Johnson's technique of "backing into" a scene, or time, or a
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conversation, i.e., he sometimes throws you into a new scene or conversation that has already started but as you continue reading, the "missing" parts are made apparent through unconventional means such as a comment within the conversation or a detail of description that brings it all together and you realize what's going on -- he doesn't turn back the clock and rework his way back into the scene like some other authors. I was enjoying the book so much that before I was anywhere near finishing, I went out and bought the next two in the series (only because that was all the bookstore had).
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LibraryThing member mikedraper
Four high school boys lure a female high school girl of American Indian heritage to a meeting and rape her in a brutal and sadistic manner. The girl, Melissa Little Bird, suffers from fetal alcohol syndrome and her reasoning powers are impaired.

The trial ends with a sentence of two years suspended
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and then parole. The Indian community is incensed with the light sentence.

Two years later, the ring leader is found dead. Sheriff Walt Longmere is attempting to make sense of it when another of the boys is killed in the same manner. Knowing that he's dealing with a revenge killing, Walt wonders why the killer waited so long and if he can protect the other two boys who were involved.

We follow the story with interesting characters and crisp dialogue. However, there are some major faults with the characters.

Walt is a grossly overweight boozhound, living in a home he began building years ago but stopped when his wife died. The home doesn't even have a door on the bathroom. As a Viet Nam vet, Walt must be in his sixties and his friend, Henry Standing Bear is trying to fix him up and encourage him to begin dating. We also learn that other women in town are interested in Walt as a partner. I don't see the attraction. The descriptions of Walt would seem to turn women completely off.

The conclusion is long in coming and when it does, the actions of a central character is directly opposite the personality and description of that character beforehand.

All in all, there were many well done scenes and I can see why this writer would have success with his later novels.
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LibraryThing member kylenapoli
Picked up this book as a change of pace and was rewarded not only with a new (to me) environment for a mystery, but also a story with nicely-tuned suspense and compelling characters.
LibraryThing member herbcat
One of the most literary mysteries I can remember; well written, clever, deep character introspection, wonderful background descriptions, surprising plot; interesting, fully developed characters. Interesting look into history and present day situation of Indians.
LibraryThing member SandyLee
Walt Longmire is the sheriff in Wyoming’s Absaroka County, an area that appears to have more horses and pigs than people. When a body is found in the mountains, Walt realizes the deceased was one of the young men who had assaulted a Cheyenne girl two years earlier. It is possible someone is
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seeking retribution for the crime. Walt relies on his friend, Henry Standing Bear, in addition to a couple deputies, the retired sheriff, and Ruby his dispatcher. Deputy Victoria Moretti is over-qualified for the job and Walt is waiting for the FBI or some big city to lure her away. Vic has the ballistics training and investigative skill Absaroka County sorely needs and Walt would like to groom her to take his job. He is recovering from the loss of his wife several years ago and still lives in their house, a cabin in desperate need of completion. More bodies pile up and by the looks of the antique weapon used, Walt starts to look at even more suspects, one of which could be his friend, Henry. Vic is one of the more interesting characters, possessing the skill and “take no prisoners” attitude of Carol O’Connell’s Kathy Mallory yet with the foul mouth of Dexter’s sister, Debra Morgan. Humor and mystery abound making for a refreshing change from mysteries set in big city precincts. This is one series I will continue to follow.
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LibraryThing member thehistorychic
Read for Bookclub
Overall Rating: 4.25
Story Rating: 4.50
Character Rating: 4.00
Audio Rating (not part of overall rating): 3.50

First thought when finished: What a great beginning to this series. I am so glad that I picked it up!

What I Loved: Walt and Harry (his best friend) were two characters that I
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absolutely fell in love with while reading The Cold Dish. Vic was a close third in my favorite character category. It isn't often in a mystery that I love and connect to the characters as much as the case. I did love the case and I didn't guess who the perp was until almost 3/4 of the way through. Even then it was just a guess but it was fun figuring it out right along with Walt!

What I Liked: I liked how the main case was woven with a past case. I really liked the visiting of the Res and all of characters based there.

Final thought: The Cold Dish served up both a great case and a wonderful cast of characters. I will be continuing this series.

Audio specific review: George Guidall is a fantastic narrator but it took awhile for me to warm up to him being Walt Longmire. After I got used to him doing the voice it was fantastic. The pacing of the reading was perfect and added to the enjoyment of the story.
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LibraryThing member DelasColinasNegras
Actually, 4 1/2 stars. This was my first Walt Longmire mystery. I loved the dry humor throughout, was intrigued by the characters, especially Henry Standing Bear, and did not guess the ending. Wyoming country and mores were portrayed honestly. The scenes with George toward the end of the novel got
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a little tedious for me. Otherwise, I would have bestowed 5 stars.
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LibraryThing member mysterymax
First book in the series and Craig Johnson has moved right up next to Lee Child in my 'favorites' list. Excellent prose, good strong characters, humour. I hope all the rest are just as good.
LibraryThing member arning
The protagonist in this book is Walt Longmire. He is an aging, sheriff in a small Wyoming town. Longmire is a likable loner, who is still mourning the death of his long time wife. The relationship between Longmire and his friend Henry Standing Bear is one of the best parts of the book.
LibraryThing member thehistorychic
Read for Bookclub
Overall Rating: 4.25
Story Rating: 4.50
Character Rating: 4.00
Audio Rating (not part of overall rating): 3.50

First thought when finished: What a great beginning to this series. I am so glad that I picked it up!

What I Loved: Walt and Harry (his best friend) were two characters that I
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absolutely fell in love with while reading The Cold Dish. Vic was a close third in my favorite character category. It isn't often in a mystery that I love and connect to the characters as much as the case. I did love the case and I didn't guess who the perp was until almost 3/4 of the way through. Even then it was just a guess but it was fun figuring it out right along with Walt!

What I Liked: I liked how the main case was woven with a past case. I really liked the visiting of the Res and all of characters based there.

Final thought: The Cold Dish served up both a great case and a wonderful cast of characters. I will be continuing this series.

Audio specific review: George Guidall is a fantastic narrator but it took awhile for me to warm up to him being Walt Longmire. After I got used to him doing the voice it was fantastic. The pacing of the reading was perfect and added to the enjoyment of the story.
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LibraryThing member ethel55
I really enjoyed this introduction to Craig Johnson's Walt Longmire series. Walt is a sheriff in Wyoming, hoping to hang onto a big city deputy to possibly take his place as he mulls over possible retirement. A case from a couple years ago still haunts Longmire and soon, bodies are piling up in
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Absaroka County as he looks for a killer tied to an old case. The interplay between residents of the county and the reservation ring very true, as does Walt's longtime friendship with Henry Standing Bear. There were a lot of characters to get to know, some better than others, but with several more books just waiting for me to catch up, I can't wait. I appreciated that the solution to the mystery wasn't too easy and can only hope they are being translated into Swedish, so they know we can plot out a good procedural too.
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LibraryThing member SugarCreekRanch
The Cold Dish is the first book in a series featuring Walt Longmire, sheriff of Absaroka County, Wyoming.

This book reminded me a lot of William Kent Krueger's Cork O'Connor series, set in Minnesota. Both series are centered on a rural sheriff, include Native American culture, place a great emphasis
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on the beautiful but harsh setting, and have much more character development than the typical crime novel.

I loved the characters and setting of The Cold Dish. But at times I wished that the pace would pick up a bit.
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Pages

400

ISBN

0143036424 / 9780143036425
Page: 0.3187 seconds