Series to Start Now: Craig Johnson’s Longmire Mysteries

Robert Taylor in Longmire (2012)/© Two Boomerang

When we think of hard-boiled detectives, our minds tend to go to Raymond Chandler’s corrupt Southern California locales, Dashiell Hammett’s tormented anti-heroes, and more recently, the gloomy streets of Jo Nesbo’s Oslo. While bestselling author Craig Johnson hasn’t necessarily reinvented that particular wheel, he’s certainly put his own spin on it.  Johnson’s sardonic Wyoming lawman, Walt Longmire, certainly fits the hard-boiled mold, but his beloved and sparsely populated Wyoming locales bring something fresh to the genre. Perhaps “snow-bitten” or “wind-swept” detective is a better description of the sort of crime fiction Johnson creates.

The hallmark of any great crime fiction is a keen view into human nature. Walt Longmire straddles two literary worlds as one part tortured detective and one part stoic cowboy. The world of Walt Longmire can be a harsh and unforgiving one – something Walt, who has seen more than his fair share of tragedy, knows well. Walt’s own seemingly impenetrable stoicism masks a deeply scarred man struggling through the emotional wreckage of a life built on the misfortunes of his past. It’s this balance – the outward courage set against Walt’s inner dialogue – that gives the series a glimmer of hope in the midst of its bleak and desolate trappings. With the release of Depth of Winter, the fourteenth Longmire Mystery, now is the perfect to take a trip into the harrowing, backcountry world of this big Wyoming sheriff.

  • The cover of the book Depth of Winter

    Depth of Winter

    A Longmire Mystery

    The latest Longmire Mystery sees Walt’s worst nightmare come true. His daughter Cady has been kidnapped by a Mexican drug cartel and Walt sets off on a one-man crusade into the North Mexican desert to bring her home.

  • The cover of the book The Cold Dish

    The Cold Dish

    A Longmire Mystery

    This introduction to the world of Walt Longmire begins with the misanthropic sheriff looking forward to retirement after 25 years on the job. Unfortunately, a dead body near the North Cheyenne Reservation draws Walt into a tragic, revenge-fueled mystery centering around the gang-rape of a local Cheyenne girl.

  • The cover of the book Death Without Company

    Death Without Company

    A Longmire Mystery

    Death Without Company starts out with the death of a woman named Mari Baroja who is found poisoned in an assisted living facility. The investigation spans decades into Mari’s sordid past and Wyoming’s Basque community as Walt searches for an elusive killer.

  • The cover of the book Kindness Goes Unpunished

    Kindness Goes Unpunished

    A Longmire Mystery

    When Walt and his long-time friend, Henry Standing Bear, head to Philadelphia to visit Walt’s daughter, the duo is quickly caught in a deadly game of political intrigue. When Cady is violently attacked and left gravely injured after becoming involved in a political cover-up, an enraged Walt looks to mete out some Wyoming-style justice in the City of Brotherly Love.

  • The cover of the book Another Man's Moccasins

    Another Man's Moccasins

    A Longmire Mystery

    When the body of a Vietnamese woman is dumped along the Wyoming interstate, Walt’s only suspect is a Crow Indian with a troubled past. However, a photograph in the woman’s purse provides a surprising link to a murder from Walt’s past – a forty-year-old case from his time as Marine Corps Investigator during the Vietnam War – and now it appears that nothing is quite what it seems.

  • The cover of the book The Dark Horse

    The Dark Horse

    A Longmire Mystery

    Mary Barsad confessed to shooting her husband Wade six times in the head after he burned her horses in their barn. It’s an understandable – if brutal – act of vengeance, but Walt doesn’t buy it. There’s something deeper under the surface and he’s not at all convinced Mary is actually the murderer. Unfortunately, it seems the entire community around Barsad Ranch had a reason to want Wade dead.

  • The cover of the book Junkyard Dogs

    Junkyard Dogs

    A Longmire Mystery

    When a multi-million dollar development corporation sets its sights on the land adjacent to the notorious Stewart Junkyard, all hell breaks loose and someone ends up dead.  Now, Walt and his deputies are caught in the midst of a potentially deadly feud as the things heat up between the volatile Stewart family and the developers.

  • The cover of the book Hell Is Empty

    Hell Is Empty

    A Longmire Mystery

    After Raynaud Shade, an adopted Crow Indian and deadly sociopath, confesses to the murder of a boy ten years ago and burying his body in Bighorn Mountains, Walt is tasked with escorting the Shade to the site. When a blizzard sets in and Walt discovers he has a connection to the dead boy’s family, things quickly take an unexpected, dangerous turn.

  • The cover of the book As the Crow Flies

    As the Crow Flies

    A Longmire Mystery

    While scoping out potential sites on the Cheyenne Reservation for his daughter’s impending nuptials, Walt and Henry Standing Bear witness a young Crow woman plummet from some nearby cliffs. Was it suicide or something more sinister? While the Reservation may be outside of Walt’s jurisdiction, he’s pulled into the case nonetheless.

  • The cover of the book A Serpent's Tooth

    A Serpent's Tooth

    A Longmire Mystery

    A Serpent’s Tooth sees Walt and company butting heads with a local – and frighteningly well-armed – polygamist group led by a man Roy Lynear. Walt is keeping Roy’s wayward son, Cord, locked up for his own good, but whispers of Big Oil and the CIA lead Walt to the realization that something deeper and much more dangerous could be ahead.

  • The cover of the book Any Other Name

    Any Other Name

    A Longmire Mystery

    When Walt’s mentor, Lucian Conally, asks him to look into the death of a detective in a neighboring county, Walt sees no choice in the matter. However, the impending arrival of his grandson puts a ticking clock on the investigation that shows ties to an old missing persons case. Walt is dragged deep into a potentially deadly rabbit hole of corruption and graft.

  • The cover of the book Dry Bones

    Dry Bones

    A Longmire Mystery

    When the most complete set of Tyrannosaurus Rex bones ever found surfaces on the Lone Elk Ranch, Danny Lone Elk realizes he’s landed on the windfall of a lifetime – and then he turns up dead, floating face down in a pond. Now Walt has to untangle a web of competing interests and track down Danny’s murderer.

  • The cover of the book An Obvious Fact

    An Obvious Fact

    A Longmire Mystery

    After the death of a young biker at the world’s largest motorcycle rally, Walt is called in to investigate with Henry Standing Bear in tow. But between the competing biker gangs, the ATF, and a wealthy entrepreneur, Walt and Henry may have stumbled into a mystery that is deeper than they bargained for.

  • The cover of the book The Western Star

    The Western Star

    A Longmire Mystery

    The Western Star digs into Walt’s early days as a deputy and a Sheriff’s Association Junket held on an excursion train called the Western Star. In this case, his past returns to haunt him is a well-hewn homage to Murder on the Orient Express, as only Craig Johnson could imagine.