Someone at work has been cleaning out his bookshelves recently and I have been the recipient of several good mystery novels. First I read an Easy Rawlins mystery by Walter Moseley which was well written and held my interest.
Then I started the first Longmire mystery with low expectations and was rewarded with a real prize.
I am enjoying this book so much! It is well-written and character-driven and the characters are all fascinating individuals. It is slightly humorous, and by that I mean, it does not take itself too seriously, as I think the television version tends to. Plus, bonus: Walt is a lawman with a literary bent. He is always making literary references, but not in a pretentious, stuffy way. Rather, he is always kind of kidding when he does so.
“I took a sip of my coffee, sat the folder on the counter, and began reading the newspaper. “In the cold, gray dawn of September the twenty-eighth . . .” Dickens. “. . . The slippery bank where the life of Cody Pritchard came to an ignominious end . . .” Faulkner. “Questioning society with the simple query, why?” Steinbeck. “Dead.” Hemingway.”
“You know, Balzac once described bureaucracy as a giant mechanism operated by pygmies.”
“What’d your buddy Balzac have to say about inadmissible evidence?”
“Not a lot. I think he considered the subject beneath him.”
“I wandered past Vic’s office and looked in at the explosion of legal pads. The display was daunting, and I would be cursed at if I messed up any of what I’m sure was a carefully detailed arrangement. We were little but we were mighty. I thought of Don Quixote, being far too powerful to war with mere mortals and pleading for giants.”
That is just how his mind works.
I am happy to note that as of May 2017, Craig Johnson has written 12 novels, 2 novellas and a collection of short stories featuring Sheriff Walt Longmire of Absaroka County, Wyoming.
My kind of guy.
One of these days I am going to quit my job and move to Wyoming and get a job as the admin to an overworked sheriff. You think I’m kidding?
(The painting at the top is by Mary Cassatt.)