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Spirit of Steamboat (Walt Longmire #9.1)

4.17  ·  Rating Details ·  3,458 Ratings  ·  494 Reviews
A holiday tale from the New York Times bestselling author of the Walt Longmire mystery series, the inspiration for A&E’s hit show Longmire

“It’s a question of what you have to do, what you have to live with if you don’t.”

Sheriff Walt Longmire is reading A Christmas Carol in his office on December 24th when he’s interrupted by the ghost of Christmas past: a young woman w
Hardcover, 146 pages
Published October 17th 2013 by Viking
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Of course I loved this! It's a short book that augments the regular novels in one of my favorite series, Sheriff Walt Longmire. Part of my 2015 holiday reading extravaganza, it's written by a favorite author, read by the perfect narrator, George Guidall, and takes place on Christmas Eve. I've said in my reviews of Longmire books that there are usually several harrowing "situations" - at the least one - that push Walt to the limit physically, mentally and emotionally in the solving whichever ...more
Jun 06, 2014 Trish rated it really liked it
Johnson has gifted us a short, white-knuckled Christmas story that is likely to become a classic. We all know Sheriff Longmire and how he took over the chief law enforcement job in Absaroka County from old Lucian Connally. This story brings them back working together again on a cold and stormy night--Christmas Eve in Montana back in 1988.

This mad twosome seems to go out of its way to test the edges of possibility. In this story, they are doing it for all the right reasons, and at a time when mos
Nov 01, 2013 Harry rated it it was amazing
Book Review:

Sidled up and in between the major Walt Longmire novels, Johnson frequently publishes novellas and short stories featuring the steadfast hero Walt Longmire: sheriff of Wyoming's fictional Absaroka County. Spirit of Steamboat, numerically sequenced as #9.1 is the latest in this series of novellas.

Aside from the Dick Francis's novels I don't know of any other author writing in this genre who portrays a hero as bound by rational thought, steadfast ethics, and likability as does Craig Jo
“Dude, this is my second free Craig Johnson book.”

“What the fuck, man?”

“I know, right. I must be one Lucky Bastard.”

“Now you’re referencing a review of one author within the review of another author. Just how big of a pimp, are you?”

“I have a fedora, white bowling shoes with black tips, a cane with a gold handle, a purple vest, and a neon green trench coat.”

“Are you showing up at the Playboy mansion later with an armful of strippers?”

“No way, my wife would bury my body in the backyard next to th
Feb 04, 2014 Eric rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of Walt Longmire
This white-knuckle, edge-of-your-seat novella about an emergency flight through a blizzard from Absaroka to Denver puts the author's previous holiday short stories in Christmas in Absaroka County to shame.

This story, a flashback to when Walt had just become sheriff, was unique in that there was no mystery to solve, and it showed the older-generation of characters -- Walt, Lucian Connally, Doctor Bloomfield -- in a very different scenario than usual, under a great deal of stress.

While the suspe
Jan 05, 2014 Inaniel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-readings
„. . . no space of regret can make amends for one life’s opportunity misused....”

Perfect. Just perfect. Now I need to sleep, I have to get up in a few hours, just couldn't lay down the book. Read it.
Ann Schwader
Dec 20, 2013 Ann Schwader rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller
If you're a Longmire viewer, a fan of Craig Johnson's Walt Longmire mystery series, or simply fascinated by the modern West, this is a Christmas novella you probably won't want to miss. Though it's not a mystery -- more of a thriller with links to Dickens -- it's a wittily written page-turner with a touch of seasonal flavor, & just enough non-cloying spirit.

Framed by Walt's decision to read his father's vintage copy of A Christmas Carol on a quiet Christmas Eve in his office, the story cent
Dec 23, 2013 Lesa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery-series
I've been looking back over the books I read in 2013, and, while there were a number of good ones, there weren't a large number of outstanding ones. Craig Johnson's Walt Longmire novella, Spirit of Steamboat, falls into the outstanding category.

On Christmas Eve, Sheriff Walt Longmire is in his office when a young woman walks in. Although she seems to know Walt, he doesn't recognize her. She also wants to see a picture of Lucian Connally, the former sheriff. Walt takes her to see Lucian in an ass
Oct 26, 2013 Mason rated it it was amazing
If you’re looking for a short story to get you ready for the coming holiday season, then author Craig Johnson’s latest release, SPIRIT OF STEAMBOAT, is just the ticket.

This holiday novella will have you laughing, crying and holding your breath as Sheriff Walt Longmire recalls his first Christmas Eve as sheriff.

The walk down memory lane begins when a mysterious young woman arrives at Longmire’s office on Christmas Eve. She appears to know him, but he can’t remember her and she isn’t telling. She
Dec 23, 2015 Mary rated it it was amazing
Spirit of Steamboat started out as one of Johnson's free Christmas short stories that he offers to fans each year. As sometimes happens, it grew larger and turned into a nice sized novella.

A car accident has killed several members of a family and a little girl is critically injured. The medics need to get her to Denver for treatment or she will die. Due to blizzard conditions the roads are impassable and a medi-vac helicopter flight is out of the question. Newly elected sheriff, Walt Longmire,
Kathy Davie
Oct 26, 2013 Kathy Davie rated it really liked it
Shelves: suspense
Technically, this is 9.1 in the publication line-up of the Walt Longmire mystery series set in Wyoming---and at the start of the story with the “prologue”, but the chronology of this novella is more like 0.25 as the main events take place a few months after Walt is elected sheriff in 1988, and Martha is still alive. And, while this is technically a mystery series, it's more of a suspenseful ride with a quickly sobering Lucian and a leaky "boat".

My Take
I liked the start of this one with its prese
Nikole Hahn
Oct 16, 2013 Nikole Hahn rated it it was amazing
Review to post on my blog: 10/17/2013

When I first read the teaser of Spirit of Steamboat: A Walt Longmire Story, I assumed it had a Dickens feel and a supernatural plot. It said, “…when he’s interrupted by the ghost of Christmas past.” This, of course, is figurative, and while I was off balance by the description, the story is fast-paced and amazing.

Walt Longmire is a sheriff in Wyoming. It’s Christmas Eve and Walt is spending it in his office. Tucked in h
Jul 10, 2014 Karl rated it it was amazing
If you are familiar with Longmire either from the A & E television series or any of the previous books then there is not much I can say to convince you of the high quality of writing this book contains.

Regardless of this book being touted here at GR as being book 9.1 in the series, it is actually a stand alone entry into the Longmire cannon. The title of the book "Spirit of Steamboat" refers to a WWII bomber that is sitting in the Absaroka County airport being refurbished.

The story takes p
Amy Sturgis
Jul 10, 2014 Amy Sturgis rated it really liked it
Recommended to Amy by: Ann Schwader
Shelves: 21st-century, western
This novella in the Longmire series finds its thematic center in a quote from Walt Longmire's annual Christmastime rereading of Dickens's A Christmas Carol: " space of regret can make amends for one life’s opportunity misused...." Like Dickens, Johnson offers a morality tale that is deceptively simple and deeply humane.

This is not a mystery in any sense, but rather an action-packed visitation of Christmas Eve in 1988, when older members of Craig Johnson's cast of characters (including Lucia
Oct 19, 2016 Jan rated it really liked it
A Longmire novella depicting a dangerous B-25 flight during a hellacious blizzard in 1988. A young girl fights for her life after a car accident. Lucien Connolly, Walt Longmire's former boss pilots a WWII plane from Durant, Wy to Denver, CO in a blizzard to save the girl's life.

Here's a fun fact. The bucking bronco that is depicted on the Wyoming license plate is in honor of a legendary bucking bronco named Steamboat! Also, WWII buffs and airplane aficionados will enjoy reading about this dange
Cathy Cole
Sep 23, 2013 Cathy Cole rated it it was amazing
I've been eagerly awaiting this novella since I heard author Craig Johnson talk about it at an author signing last summer. It was worth the wait, not because it's a rip-snorting little mystery that ties in with all the other Walt Longmire whodunits, but because it says so much about the heart, the compassion, and the determination of the memorable characters Johnson has created. Readers get to see what these folks do when they're not out solving crime-- and it's every bit as enthralling as those ...more
Nov 08, 2013 LJ rated it it was amazing
First Sentence: It was Tuesday, the day before Christmas, and I wasn’t expecting visitors.

A woman walks into the office of Sheriff Walt Longmire on Christmas Eve. She seems to know Walt but refuses to give her name. Instead she insists on seeing retired Sheriff Lucian Connally, now living at the Durant Home for Assisted Living. Once there, she proceeds to tell a story of events that involved them all on Christmas Eve in 1988—when Walt’s wife was still alive--that involves a life flight during a
L.M. Krier
Jul 09, 2016 L.M. Krier rated it liked it
A short story stretched too far.

I've clearly read something different to those leaving glowing 5-star reviews. I chose this Walt Longmire novella as I needed something light after my last read, and I'm a fan of Craig Johnson's Walt Longmire.

It was listed as Mystery but the only mystery to me was the decision to stretch a nice, light Christmas story to make it long enough for a novella.

The story, in a nutshell, finds a young woman come in out of the blizzard to where Walt Longmire is following hi
Jan 01, 2014 Kevintipple rated it it was amazing
The Tuesday before Christmas brings snow, relative quiet, and no real plans for Sheriff Walt Longmire other than his annual rereading of A Christmas Carol. That is until the quiet dark haired woman toting a garment bag walked into his office. Eventually it becomes clear that she wants to see the former Sheriff, Lucian Connally. The woman claims to have something that she would like to return to him.

Lucian is living at the “Durant Home for Assisted Living” and could probably use a visit from some
Dec 02, 2013 Marilyn rated it it was amazing
“It’s a question of what you have to do, what you have to live with if you don’t.”

As Sheriff Walt Longmire is reading A Christmas Carol in his office on Christmas Eve, he’s interrupted by a mysterious young woman who claims to know him. And Lucian Connally, Walt's predecessor who now lives in a retirement home.

She is indeed a ghost of Christmas past. It take Walt a while, but when he sees the scars, one that runs across her forehead, the plastic reconstruction work around her mouth and nose -- h
Dec 15, 2013 Ronna rated it it was amazing
This story begins on a Christmas Eve with Sheriff Walt Longmire starting to read his annual reading of A CHRISTMAS CAROL. Scattered amongst the story to follow, are pieces of this Dickens's story that have become meaningful to Walt.

A terrible snow storm has resulted in a car crash that kills everyone but one small girl. Her only chance of survival is getting to better medical facilities in Denver's Hospital. Roads are closed and flying is all but forbidden. Her only chance is the courageous, or
Dec 15, 2013 Chris rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery-wyoming
A short, compelling and beautiful Christmas novella in the spirit of A Christmas Carrol, which is also the book Longmire carries by his side in the telling of this life and death story. If there ever was an episode or version or tale about Longmire, it's this one that should be made into a movie or hour of TV. But it won't be probably because the book and TV Longmire have gone separate paths. This incident is a flashback to 1988 when Longmire is the newly elected Sheriff and Lucian has just ...more
Craig Werner
Jun 03, 2014 Craig Werner rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, west
More a novella that follows a single plot line than a full blown novel, Spirit of Steamboat leans heavily on Dickens' Christmas Carol, which Walt Longmire quotes often as the action unfolds. Like A Christmas Carol, Spirit of Steamboat packs a sentimental punch as we dig into the back story of Lucian Carroll (I'm wondering if Johnson had the pun in mind when he introduced Walt's predecessor as sheriff many books ago). There's a present tense frame, but most of the action takes place on Christmas ...more
Joel Neff
Sep 06, 2016 Joel Neff rated it really liked it
Spirit of Steamboat is different from the rest of the Sheriff Walt Longmire books in a few respects: it's shorter - Steamboat is a novella rather than a novel, it's more action than mystery, and it takes place in the early years of Walt's tenure as Sheriff, only shortly after winning the position from Lucian Connelly. For all these differences though, Spirit of Steamboat is a fantastic Longmire story.

Centered around a little girl who spends the entire novella unconscious, Walt, Lucian, and a few
Jan 05, 2015 Jeanne rated it liked it
Shelves: holiday, longmire
It is Christmas Eve, and Sheriff Walt Longmire is engaging in an annual ritual: reading A Christmas Carol. A visitor arrives at his office, a ghost of Christmas past, of sorts. Longmire is transported back in time, back to December 24, 1988. . .

On that fateful Christmas Eve, Walt is faced with a challenge: transporting a young burn victim to Denver. With a winter storm upon Wyoming, the helicopter that got her to Durant just won’t make the trip to Colorado.

With the help of Lucian Connally and a
Dec 22, 2013 Susan rated it it was amazing
A feel good Walt Longmire Christmas novella. One Christmas Eve when Lucian was still the sheriff, can-do Walt and Lucian set out on a harrowing adventure to save a young girl's life. She is the only survivor of a terrible car accident and must be transported immediately to a hospital than can treat her life threatening injuries before its too late.

Crazy Lucent, Walt, and a young female pilot that Lucent calls "toots", take on the task of flying an old bomber called, "Steamboat" through a terrib
Sheila Beaumont
In this wonderful novella for the holiday season, Sheriff Walt Longmire's Christmas Eve rereading of Dickens' A Christmas Carol is interrupted by a visit from a young woman who is looking for his predecessor, WWII veteran Lucian Connally. Soon we are taken into a flashback to 1988, when Lucian, accompanied by Walt and several others, piloted a dodgy antique WWII aircraft named Steamboat through a violent winter storm to Denver in order to save the life of a severely burned little girl. All sorts ...more
Nov 01, 2015 Anthony rated it it was amazing
Originally intended as a short story, this turned into a novella. And an excellent one at that. Craig Johnson has written a version of A Christmas Carol in this tale of Walt Longmire.

Walt is in his office on Christmas Eve, following his tradition of reading Dickens', A Christmas Carol. A young woman interrupts him and asks about the former Sheriff, and Walt's former boss, Lucian Connally. Walt agrees to help her and when they go see Lucian at the home for assisted living, there begins a tale of
Oct 18, 2013 Gerry rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
Another short story in this series. While longer than the others, it was still short. A Novella they call it rather than a short story.
I like the book, but I found it not quite as good as some of the others in this series. It's a holiday story, but only in the loosest sense I thought. Christmas is kind of an afterthought, rather than the focus.
If you like this series, you will like this book. It's still well written and still has the great characters we all love for the series, but we only get
Leggere A Colori
Jun 02, 2016 Leggere A Colori rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Il volo di Natale si è rivelato essere un romanzo con una coinvolgente escalation di intrecci di vite, di storie, di valori, che attraverso un avventuroso, quanto quasi assurdo volo a bordo di un vecchio bombardiere, sfidando una eccezionale tempesta di neve per ben due interminabili ore, emoziona e cattura, prima la curiosità e poi l’attenzione del lettore.
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

American novelist and playwright. He lives in Ucross, near Sheridan, Wyoming, population 25.

Johnson has written nine novels featuring Sheriff Walt Longmire: The Cold Dish, Death Without Company, Kindness Goes Unpunished, Another Man's Moccasins, Junkyard Dogs, The Dark Horse (which received starred reviews from
More about Craig Johnson...

Other Books in the Series

Walt Longmire (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • The Cold Dish (Walt Longmire, #1)
  • Death Without Company (Walt Longmire, #2)
  • Kindness Goes Unpunished (Walt Longmire, #3)
  • Another Man's Moccasins (Walt Longmire, #4)
  • The Dark Horse (Walt Longmire, #5)
  • Junkyard Dogs (Walt Longmire, #6)
  • Hell Is Empty (Walt Longmire, #7)
  • As The Crow Flies (Walt Longmire, #8)
  • A Serpent's Tooth (Walt Longmire, #9)
  • Any Other Name (Walt Longmire, #10)

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