Although I haven’t reviewed them here (yet), I’ve recently listened to the audio versions of the first three Longmire books by Craig Johnson. I started reading/listening to the books because of my enjoyment of the television series. And while I look forward to the next (and final?) season to be airing this fall, I do find that I enjoy the books much more.
The Highwayman is billed as a Longmire story and Goodreads places it as number 11.5 in the series. It is a little shorter than a full-length novel (a novella) but it is as filled with adventure and insight as any of the other Longmire books I have finished.
One of the things that I’ve really come to appreciate about these Longmire books is the surprising sense of mysticism – typically from the Native American perspective, and the gruff, cowboy Walt Longmire’s acceptance of the inexplicable. This is definitely highlighted in this book. In his introduction, Johnson mentions wanting to update a classic ghost story and with this book he succeeds.
If you aren’t already familiar with Walt Longmire and the Longmire series, you should consider starting the series at the beginning. However, Johnson does a superb job of telling a self-contained story within the covers of each book so it is not essential to read them in order. However, the characters and their relationships do progress and grow, so it is nice to be able to follow the growth.
For those who aren’t familiar with the character, Walt Longmire is a sheriff in a small country in Utah. He is a cowboy, and perhaps the last of the classic, rugged, cowboys, struggling to transition to the modern world – not opposed to it, just not familiar with it.
Johnson’s storytelling is strong but what really makes his books work are the characters. Each character is unique and fully fleshed out. Even those who make only a brief appearance come across as real individuals with history and lives. But Johnson doesn’t fill the book with unnecessary characters, so even those with a minor appearance are there for a reason.
This book, and the series, is highly recommended.
Looking for a good book? The Highwayman by Craig Johnson is a Walt Longmire story and an updated ghost story that works tremendously well.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
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author: Craig Johnson
series: Walt Longmire #11.5
hardcover, 190 pages