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The Cold Dish (Walt Longmire #1)

4.13 of 5 stars 4.13  ·  rating details  ·  11,914 ratings  ·  1,847 reviews
Introducing Wyoming's Sheriff Walt Longmire in this riveting novel from the "New York Times "bestselling author of "Hell Is Empty "and "As the Crow Flies," the first in the Walt Longmire Mystery Series, the basis for "LONGMIRE," the hit A&E original drama series
Fans of Ace Atkins, Nevada Barr and Robert B. Parker will love this outstanding first novel, in which "New Y
ebook, 400 pages
Published December 1st 2004 by Penguin Books
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Sharon Chase There is some foul language but compared to some movies it is not as bad. The characters are true to life and some of the language portrays the…moreThere is some foul language but compared to some movies it is not as bad. The characters are true to life and some of the language portrays the character as she is and her previous working environment where she worked with prevalent male counterparts. (less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jeffrey Keeten
"On the afternoon of June 25th, 1876, as the heat waves rolled from the buffalo grass, giving the impression of a breeze that did not exist, Colonel George Armstrong Custer and five companies of the Seventh Cavalry rode into the valley of the Little Big Horn. Also that afternoon, Davey Force, a pitcher for the Philadelphia Athletics, went six for six against Chicago, who scored four runs in the ninth to pull out a 14 to 13 victory. Custer was not so lucky."

Big Horn Mountains

Sheriff Walt Longmir
Steve Sckenda
Jan 21, 2015 Steve Sckenda rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Seekers of the Old Ones and their Half Truths
Recommended to Steve by: Bennet
"The dead just want the same thing as the living: understanding."

Yeh, I know this guy. When you live out West, you meet guys like Walt Longmire, Sheriff of Absaroka County, Wyoming. They have massive paws, weathered faces, slabs of muscle, and unkempt bellies. They’re not flashy. They drive old trucks and wear tan Carhartt jackets. They’re tough; smart; quiet; and decent.

They prefer older guns with big recoil, like the Colt .45 -- cause when you actually hit something with it “the fight was ov
Shelby *wants some flying monkeys*
Walt Longmire is just wanting to finish out his term as sheriff of Wyoming's Absaroka county in peace and quiet. That of course does not happen. Young Cody Pritchard is found shot and dumped in with a local farmer's sheep.
Don't feel bad for Cody though, he and his buddies violently raped a young Cheyenne girl. They got suspended sentences.
Now someone is seeking justice for that crime.

Walt Longmire is that type of character that grabs my fickle attention. Overweight, depressed, likes drinking.
Dan Schwent
Two years ago, four boys were put on trial for raping a Cheyenne girl. When one of them winds up dead, sheriff Walt Longmire finds himself in the middle of murder investigation. Plenty of people had cause for wanting Cody Prichard dead but who had the guts to do the deed? And are his three compadres next on the hit list?

In my never-ending quest to sample what series crime fiction has to offer, I decided to give The Cold Dish a try. After all, A&E wouldn't make a crime series about a dud, wou
I don't think I've been this enthusiastic about a new author since discovering Dick Francis. It's not a question of Nobel or Booker Prize material, or of changing my outlook on life. It's just that I discovered something that fits me like a glove, the equivalent of a joyride - makes me feel good, makes me feel smart for figuring out the main suspect before the last page, a bit of adrenaline rush and a lot of snarky humor. Most of all it's about the characters, oddballs and loners most of t
James Thane
This is the first book in Craig Johnson's long-running series featuring Walt Longmire, the middle-aged sheriff of Absaroka County in Wyoming. The books, in turn, would later inspire the television program that was named for the sheriff.

This book opens with the shooting death of a young man named Cody Pritchard. It's possible that Pritchard's death was the result of a hunting accident, but it soon appears that it was actually an act of deliberate homicide.

The list of suspects is unusually long.
Sep 06, 2014 Carol. rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Barr, weatherbeaten sheriffs, dry humor, good characters
Recommended to Carol. by: many of you! Thanks!

I knew in the first four pages that I was going to enjoy this book.

It begins with Sheriff Walt Longmire of Absaroka County, Wyoming, sitting in his office, watching the geese fly south. Ruby, dispatcher/receptionist, interrupts his musings to tell him he has a call from Bob Barnes, who wants to report a dead body he discovered when he and his son went to collect their sheep.
“She leaned against the doorjamb and went to shorthand, ‘Bob Barnes, dead body, line one.’
I looked at the blinking red ligh
Mike Schneider
When starting this book as a result of my daughter's recommendation, I didn't think a murder mystery set in sparsely-populated Wyoming would hold my attention. When finished, I realized this was one of the most enjoyable books I've read this year, I marveled at how well-written it was, and I wondered how Craig Johnson's books had heretofore escaped my attention. This is the first of a series and I'm definitely looking forward to the remainder of the series. Johnson has created several intriguing ...more
A group of friends and I have something that we like to call Forced Book Reads, where we each choose a book and make the whole gang read it. (Or at least they have to if they want the others to read THEIR book.) For my selection, I went with Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig, and now it's my friend Chris's turn, and he chose this.

I would like to state for the record at this point that, as a whole, I did like this book. However, pretty early on, I noticed some nitpicky little things that started to bot
This was perfect delight to me. It has satisfying drama, engaging characters, and evocation of place. Often the first in a series is a bit awkward, but this one hit on all cylinders for me right out the gate.

Walt Longmire, the 50-something sheriff of the fictional Absaroka County in northern Wyoming, gets a case of a young man shot by a large caliber gun likely to be an antique buffalo rifle. It turns out the victim was one of a set of youths convicted a couple of years earlier of the rape of a
Lance Charnes
Dec 04, 2013 Lance Charnes rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of traditional whodunits, North American league
Craig Johnson’s The Cold Dish introduces Walt Longmire, long-time sheriff of the fictional Absaroka County, Wyoming. If Walt’s name sounds vaguely familiar, it’s because he has a TV show named for him (Longmire, on A&E). Some elements of The Cold Dish made it into the pilot episode, while the rest filled out the first season’s climax. I was drawn to this book by the series, as I suspect others before me have been.

That may have been a problem.

The titular “cold dish” is revenge, which drives t
Craig Johnson has written nine novels in his Walt Longmire series. Formerly a police officer; he has also worked as a educator, cowboy and longshoreman. Awards include Tony Hillerman Award, Wyoming Historical Society Award, Wyoming Councl for the Arts Award, as well as numerous starred awards. Johnson was also a board member of the Mystery Writers' of America.

Craig Johnson as an artist, as a man who paints with words ascribes to the essential characteristic of what makes art different from anyth
Walt Longmire is the sheriff of Absaroka County in Wyoming, a place where everyone knows your name and probably your business. Walt's been a widower for four years now. His home is worse than a bachelor pad, his deputy Vic is forever giving him a hard time about being overweight, and there's mouse droppings on his cooking utensils.

Despite the fact that Walt's life seems to be in a shambles, the people of Absaroka County like Walt, especially his good friend and Cheyenne Indian Henry S
Wart Hill
I have no idea what I was thinking, giving this only three stars the first time I read it.

It is absolutely fantastic. A mystery that you keeps you guessing, wonderful characters... it's everything I love in a mystery novel.
Craig Johnson is a master of the genre and a damn fine storyteller, as has been noted in many reviews and nicely summed up in the blurbs on the back of this book. I love everything about the story and Walt Longmire, with the minor exception of preferring Robert Taylor's look to that of the strictly literary Walt. Cold Dish is the first installment in a series I look forward to enjoying in full on the page and the screen, though the t.v. series would be better if it devoted an entire season to ea ...more
THE COLD DISH (Police Proc-Wyoming-Cont) – VG
Johnson, Craig – 1st in series
Viking, 2005 – Hardcover
Sheriff Walt Longmire is in charge of a small, but quirky group of law enforcement officers in Absaroka County, Wyoming. When the body of Cody Pritchard is found dead of a gunshot wound, they need to determine wither it is a hunting accident. But Cody, along with three others, is recently released from serving time for the brutal rape of a young Indian girl. If the killing is revenge, are the other
There’s a new sheriff in town, and his name is Longmire. Walt Longmire. Walt has a cast of characters that both complement and challenge him, with Henry Standing Bear and Victoria Moretti receiving prominent attention. Small town life never sounded so good or so mystical. The scenes are painted to perfection by a man who certainly knows and appreciates his craft, the scenery of Wyoming, and the complicated relationships between two people that slowly develop over time. And that’s the way this bo ...more
Nov 30, 2012 Hannah marked it as did-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
Did not finish.

After enjoying the A&E TV drama Longmire, I was interested in trying the books from which the show was based upon. After a long wait list from my library, I finally got the first in the series in my eager little hands.

For the right reading audience, I can see why this mystery series is so popular, but it's not the right fit for me. Too much foul language and the humor isn't a brand I share in. Will continue to enjoy the TV series, but will retire from the books.

Glad I tried it
Lourdes Venard
The crimes reported in Absaroka County are not the usual: a kid chasing horses with his snow machine (turns out he was herding livestock with it), someone sliding off an icy road and hitting a yield sign; and someone stealing Old Lady Grossman’s snowman (a practical joke by her nephew). So when someone reports a dead body, Sheriff Walt Longmire figures it’s probably dead sheep. But the body is that of Cody Pritchard’s, one of four young men who two years earlier received a light sentence for the ...more
Review from Badelynge
Walt Longmire is the Sheriff of Absaroka county in Wyoming beneath the shadow of the Big Horn Mountains. He's marking time until his retirement, mourning the loss of his wife while he drinks himself to sleep each night in front of a tv with a speciality for static in a half built cabin.
When the body of Cody Pritchard is found, seemingly shot by an antique rifle, Walt has to shake off his doldrums to discover the killer. Because Cody Pritchard was one of four boys who raped a
Oct 11, 2013 Eric rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
This book approached perfection. The protagonist was a mix of Raylan Givens and Harry Bosch, and the setting was reminiscent of a Jack London adventure.

All the characters of Absaroka, Wyoming are fleshed out to unexpected degree for what I wrongly assumed was "just another mystery novel" in an offbeat setting. There's recently widowed Vietnam veteran turned lawman Walt Longmire, foul-mouthed female deputy Vic Moretti, one-legged former sheriff Lucian Connally, Walt's closest friend and Cheyenne
This is one of those books that takes you right in, sits you down by the fire, covers your lap with a blanket and hands you a drink. This story of a smart, seasoned and kind Sheriff just had me from the beginning. A fairly small town band of characters only add to the rich story line. A murder of a youth that was convicted of the rape of a young girl starts the roller coaster story line. The banter between the Sheriff and his best friend called Bear is so random and dry that it is just hilarious ...more
I tried watching the TV series & didn't care for it, so I was surprised at how good the book was. It was quite a bit longer than it needed to be, but that was part of the writing style - very laid back & subtle at times. Made for a likable, humble character who was really quite a bad ass & yet a softie, too. Interesting mix. The Indian stuff was well done, surprisingly so. I liked the way it was used to describe the blizzard trek. I normally hate that, but this somehow added to the u ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
Walt Longmire is the long time sheriff of Absaroka County. This is the first book in the series of his....what, adventures, escapades, life events?

I'm giving this book (after consideration) four(4) stars though it's a low 4. If we had the much lamented half star system it would be 3.5. For at least the first third of the book whether I'd finish it or not was in doubt. Then it (finally) settles down and tells it's story. ready for Walt's internal struggles, his angst, his loss, his new re
If James Lee Burke had decided to base his Robicheaux series in Wyoming, one can imagine the result coming out something like COLD DISH, which is in no way to diminish Johnson's accomplishment. This was a wonderful, entertaining read with fully developed characters that were believable and interesting. You had the damaged, widowed ex-Vietnam vet lawman, struggling with loss and trying to repair his personal life while faced with a crime that had personal meaning; a tough, supportive, intelligent ...more
Amy Sturgis
Jan 27, 2014 Amy Sturgis rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Amy by: Ann K. Schwader
I have a pattern when it comes to adaptations: I go the source material first and read it, and then I watch the adaptation to see how it measures up. Not this time. I fell hard for the A&E television series Longmire thanks to its gorgeous use of setting, consistently excellent acting, and most of all its informed and sensitive portrayal of the interaction and politics between Anglo and Northern Cheyenne communities in Wyoming. In fact, I hesitated about reading the novels that had inspired t ...more
Surprise! Surprise! Yep, books can still surprise me.

Recently I saw a trailer on A&E plugging the debut of TheWalt Longmire Mystery series coming to tv with the first to be aired last Sunday. I have heard wonderful things about theis award winning series but had never read one myself. Time to turn the pages!

The Walt Longmire series begins with The Cold Dish and it seemed appropriate to start right at the beginning. I knew they took place in Absaroka County,Wyoming and had that sort of weste
Karin Slaughter
I read this because I really love the TV show, but it spoiled a lot of things on the show for me, so then I decided to not read any more. So, if there was no TV show, I would read all of them. Does that make me a bad person? Or am I just an awesome TV watcher?
Craig Johnson is a NTM author. I am going out today and get the rest of his back list. What an awesome read!

Walt, the Sheriff in Absaroka County, Wyoming, just got a call about a dead body in his county. His blood runs cold as he is informed of the name of the victim. A couple of years ago, Cody was one of 4 high school boys that coaxed a young girl with AFS down into a basement, where they brutally raped her. The boys got very little time for the crime and were all free as of Cody's murder.

4 stars - It was great. I loved it.

Excellent atmospheric mystery set in a small Wyoming town that includes Native American subject matter. What made this one shine for me was the dialogue, which was hilarious if you enjoy sarcasm, and the characters. The author did a wonderful job of creating memorable characters that are easy to visualize and will be missed when the book is over. Listened to the audio version of this one, which I would easily recommend as it is narrated by one of my favorites,
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The Mystery, Crim...: Walt Longmire Cable TV Show 136 391 10 hours, 50 min ago  
knowledge of this series 21 184 Aug 31, 2014 10:03AM  
HPLD Online Book ...: The Cold Dish 1 2 Aug 15, 2014 10:46AM  
HPLD Online Book ...: Walt Longmire Series By: Craig Johnson 1 3 Aug 13, 2014 10:08AM  
  • Tilt-a-Whirl (John Ceepak Mystery, #1)
  • Savage Run (Joe Pickett, #2)
  • The Eagle Catcher (Wind River Reservation, #1)
  • Heartshot
  • Purgatory Ridge (Cork O'Connor, #3)
  • Tularosa (Kevin Kerney, #1)
  • The Ranger (Quinn Colson, #1)
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 11 books)
  • 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)
  • Dry Bones (Walt Longmire, #11)
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)

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“He mulled that over. "Sheriff Connally woulda let us shoot 'em."
I reached over and took his coffee away from him. "Yep. Lucian probably would have done the job himself, but we're living in more enlightened times." I drained his cup and handed it back with a smile. "Ain't it grand?”
“Henry figured that the reason the Cheyenne had always ridden Appaloosas into battle was because by the time the men got there, they were so angry with the horses they were ready to kill everything.” 31 likes
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