Sheriff Walt Longmire is back in Absaroka County, Wyoming after his intense adventure in Mexico in the previous book in the Longmire series. Now things are back to normal … or as normal as things get for cowboy-throwback sheriff. Sheep are being killed and the ranchers are concerned because a wolf has been spotted (by Walt himself), despite the fact that there haven’t been wolves in Wyoming in a long time. A lone shepherd is found dead by hanging in the mountains in what could be a suicide but could also be a homicide. The son-in-law of one of the most dangerous men in the county pays a surprise visit. A woman previously unknown to Walt, doing research in the mountains, knows a little too much about the stray wolf and the dead man. And an internet personality with a webshow about seeking out and naming/shaming pedophiles may have a connection to Absaroka County.
Yup, back to normal.
As much as I really liked the energy and intensity of the previous book, I preferred having Walt back in familiar territory. He’s still not 100%, physically (or mentally), due to what he endured in Mexico – in fact, his department has a pool going in anticipation of his next breakdown, and they’re also keeping an eye on him, trying to keep him out of trouble (without much success).
Author Craig Johnson has had wonderful success with this Longmire series in part, I think, because we get the story through Walt’s perspective and despite his almost super-human efforts at times, he’s very relate-able – mostly because he struggles. He struggles to make sense of things, and to get through his daily life, and to stay connected to the only family he has left, and also to do his job. We may not make life and death decisions the way Walt Longmire does, but we do understand a daily struggle.
Bringing this story back home provides some comfort (for Walt as well as for the reader), but Johnson doesn’t make the welcome home very easy. There is a lot going on here, with multiple plots, and it’s anybody’s guess if the stories will merge and become part of one big story, or if Walt has to end up solving different cases in the course of this book.
I enjoyed this book. Opening a book to a Walt Longmire story just feels ‘right.’ We know we’re in for a strong, morally straight man who will push through everything thrown at him in order to solve a problem or right a wrong. And even if you’ve never read a Walt Longmire story before, you could pick this up and read it with no problem.
Looking for a good book? Land of Wolves by Craig Johnson is the fifteenth book in the Walt Longmire series and brings Sheriff Longmire back to Wyoming for a couple of different mysteries inside his own county.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
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Land of Wolves
author: Craig Johnson
series: Walt Longmire #15
hardcover, 336 pages