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Cold Wind (Joe Pickett #11)

4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  3,791 ratings  ·  364 reviews
The extraordinary new Joe Pickett novel from the Edgar Award-winning author. When Earl Alden is found dead, dangling from a wind turbine, it's his wife, Missy, who is arrested. Unfortunately for Joe Pickett, Missy is his mother-in- law, a woman he dislikes heartily, and now he doesn't know what to do-especially when the early signs point to her being guilty as sin.

But th
Hardcover, 388 pages
Published March 22nd 2011 by G.P. Putnam's Sons (first published March 1st 2011)
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One For The Money by Janet EvanovichA is for Alibi by Sue GraftonMurder on the Orient Express by Agatha ChristieMonkeewrench by P.J. TracyA Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle
Favorite Mystery Series
82nd out of 273 books — 96 voters
Below Zero by C.J. BoxOpen Season by C.J. BoxBlood Trail by C.J. BoxWinterkill by C.J. BoxSavage Run by C.J. Box
Fiction Novels for the Outdoorsman
22nd out of 75 books — 16 voters

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Community Reviews

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First Sentence: He set out after breakfast on what would be his last day on earth.

Wyoming game warden, Joe Pickett, makes the very grim discovery of his mother-in-law, Missy’s, newest husband shot in the chest and his body being circulated like a whirligig toy from the blade of an electricity windmill. Missy is arrested for murder and asks Joe to help prove she is innocent. In spite of his dislike for her, he agrees due to his wife and daughters. Joe’s friend, Nate, has his own battles to fight
Can't say enough good things about C.J. Box! I've gotten to meet him a couple of times and have been so impressed by how gracious and generous he is with his time to all his fans. Cold Wind's issue (there is one in every book) is wind power, government subsidies, and "skimming". If you are disillusioned with capitalism and suspect that it's all about who you know, not what you know, this book is for you.

Best line ever in a book: "Nothing spells trouble like two drunk cowboys with a rocket launc
Shelleyrae at Book'd Out
*My edition (same isbn) is being released Jan 1st 2012 in Australia*

Cold Wind is an enjoyable mystery/thriller set in the wilds of Wyoming, Joe Pickett is a game warden who reluctantly finds himself investigating the death of his father in law, Earl Alden. The local police immediately arrest his mother in law, Missy and while Joe i snot averse to seeing the woman locked up, it seems unlikely she shot her husband, carelessly leaving the gun covered in prints in her car, and then hauled her husban
This is my first CJ Box book, and obviously the problem with jumping in at the 11th book in a series is missing references to previous cases and being confused about certain characters. This happened a few times in the book, most notably repeated references to a case involving twins in the woods that I still don't get, and the character of April (I'm still not clear on who her parents are and why she's living with Joe and his wife). This didn't stop me from enjoying the book, but I would have ap ...more
Giovanni Gelati
One thing I love is wind power, good stuff and fun to read about. Combine that with an awesome setting like Wyoming and Joe Pickett, and you have a dynamo of a novel. Check this out from Publishers Weekly:
“Wyoming game warden Joe Pickett must try to prove that his despised mother-in-law, Missy Alden, isn't guilty of murdering Earl Alden, her fifth husband, in Box's searing 11th Joe Pickett novel (after Nowhere to Run). Pickett's gruesome discovery of Alden's body is followed almost immediately
Game warden, Joe Pickett is back. He has just helped his oldest daughter move to college. Things are going well for Joe until his mother in law calls. Her husband has been gone for quite some time and she is worried. Joe offers to come out and help look for him.

When Joe finds him, it is not good. Earl Alden is dead. Sheriff McLanahan is quick to suspect Mrs. Alden, Joe’s mother in law. Joe must find a way to prove his mother in law’s innocent before it is too late,

Cold Wind is the first Joe Pic
I thought this was a very well-written book, and would give it 3.5 stars. However, it felt as if I came late to the party with this one. I am sure I would have enjoyed it more i f I had read some of the previous Joe Pickett books in this series. I was not sure why Joe hated his mother-in-law, Missy, so very much from the past. It was mentioned several times, and I could see that she was a minipulating, cold woman. But something happened in past books regarding this relationship, and his other re ...more
Another good outing in the Joe Pickett series. In this one, Joe's mother-in-law, Missy, is accused of shooting her husband and hoisting him to the top of a wind turbine. This is Missy's 5th husband as she has made her way up in the world. Her husband, Earl Alden, has played the system to make his millions and Missy has found out that he planned to divorce her. But is Missy being framed? Could she have actually had the strength to hoist the body to the top of the wind turbine? Joe sets out to det ...more
This is only my second C J. Box book but this is quickly becoming one of my favorite series. Joe Picket, a game warden, starts his day like any other and things quickly go from bad to worse. A gun shot, a horse running without a rider and then his father-in-laws dead body spinning on a wind turbine.

When his mother-in-law is arrested for the murder, Joe is put in a very compromising position. technically he cannot investigate the case because it would be a conflict of interest. The problem with
Joe Pickett and his mother-in-law Missy have never been friendly with each other. However, when she is accused of murdering her current husband Earl, Joe is pretty sure she's being framed. At the same time, Nate Romanowski is seeking vengeance when something tragic happens. Joe and Nate have been estranged and out of contact with each other, but their paths eventually cross in a startling resolution. One of the things that was different about this novel from previous Joe Pickett books is that al ...more

The series is strong. For me it synergistically makes each book better and more appealing than they would be alone.

I also for the most part like the characters a lot. Joe Pickett is a compelling, complicated man, the daughters--especially complicated April--are great. I am not nearly as taken with Rambo Nate Romanowski; he is interesting, but seems more like a super hero comic book character than real. Some other characters are excellent, some (the Sheriff and his deputies) a little two dimensio
PROTAGONIST: Joe Pickett, game warden
SETTING: Wyoming
SERIES: #11 of 11
RATING: 4.25

It’s no secret that Joe Pickens detests his mother-in-law, Missy. In fact, that’s the way that most people feel about her. She’s completely self-absorbed and vain, with only one real interest, amassing great amounts of wealth. She’s finally achieved her goal through marriage (her fifth) to Earl Alden. Combined with the assets gained through her previous union to Bud Longbrake, Earl and Missy possess a mega-propert
CJ just gets better and better as a writer. I am not a blind CJ fan. I have not been pleased with all of his books but he really has come a long way from his first novel. The story is that Joe Pickett a Fish and Game warden finds a body strapped to the blade of wind turbine. It turns out to be his mother-in-law's newest husband. Joe is asked by his wife to investigate the murder to help exonerate the woman he despises, his mother-in-law. She has been charged with the murder. On a parallel story, ...more
First, I must state I won this on First Reads...Now, this book jumped from page one and has not slowed down..enough to where I started it today and have been really slow to put it down...although I have a ton of other books to get through. The book already by the first 100 pages has a couple of motives and potential suspects! Just good readin'

The thing I like most about this book is that I have read one CJ Box book and wasn't that impressed, so I discontinued the series. I have been able to pick
A game warden named Joe who spends more time not doing his job. Interesting. Not having read the preceding ten other mysteries in the series I thought the Nate character living in the cave a distraction. But eventually Nate's lifestyle synchronizes with the murder plot around Joe's mother-in-law. At the same time I started reading this book there was an article in the news about a house in Cheyenne that is the address of corporations numbering in the thousands. That issue comes up in this book w ...more
This was fantastic. This might make a great TV movie, kind of like the Jesse Stone films. Anyways as far as a book this was original and kept you intact the entire time. Everything you wanted from a Pickett book, it really makes the next one an impatient wait. I really liked how Nate and Joe "found" each other at the same place and just picked up from there. Box has really improved as a writer as these books have gone on, with the setup though, it'd be so easy to do a spin-off with Nate. With th ...more
Lissa Notreallywolf
Cold Wind explores the wind energy industry by de-romanticizing it. The turbines kill flying animals, bats, birds, and they are often fenced into windparks that take habitat from animals as well as preventing human egress over habitually used service roads. Living next to a wind farm might be tolerable if you are deaf, and appreciate the appearance of the towers. Like the Lees who live next door to Thunderhead Ranch, you might resent the fact their construction allows the owner to string electri ...more
i won this from goodreads and hoped i'd have it in my mailbox before i left for vacation, but i didn't, so i had to wait until i got home to read it. it was worth the wait! for once, joe didn't get himself into any major jams! missy is arrested for murdering her husband and joe investigates. in the meantime, someone is after nate and sheridan has moved into her college dorm. a lot is going on in joe's life and i loved going along for the ride with him!
Clay Nichols
A Tea Party rant in three acts.

The only thing I liked about this book is giving it one star.

Puh-lease avoid this tiresome treatise on the evils of big government and hippie street performers.

I'm enjoying this Wyoming author, although I'm a bit annoyed about his continual l reference to the "Twelve Sleep" area. His celebrity big city lawyer sounds an awful lot like another well-known lawyer who live in Jackson Hole. For the most part his characters and country seem pretty real and true. It's always fun to read stories about areas of which you are familiar.
I loved this book, as much as I found it hard to believe. Joe Pickett #11 indicates these characters have been developing and interacting for a while so maybe if I read some of the previous books in the series, it would make more sense. But it did not at all interfere with my enjoyment of the characters. On the other hand, there was a lot of whining about how government and capitalism colluded to ruin America is so many ways. But it does make me wonder--is the government underwriting biofuel pro ...more
Joan Colby
This is definitely one of the best of Box’s Joe Pickett series. Replete with action, it also details a lot of interesting information about wind farms, as well as faithfully portraying the typical Westerners political views (leave us the hell alone). A real asset to Box who shows that his talent for detailing Pickett’s travails hasn’t diminished.
Vicki Renee
I usually really enjoy CJ Box's writing, but this time I could really FEEL the author's "editorializing" and did not appreciate it. To wit, his rather numerous references to "those using EBT cards" or "receiving government assistance," etc. Once I can understand but after the 2nd time I felt I was being beat over the head with the politics. Folks who have worked HAVE paid into the system and if they need a little help with food stamps (the EBT card) or otherwise, so what?? With the recession goi ...more
Anne Slater
I think I've read more than half a dozen of C J Box's Joe Pickett novels. This is my favorite so far. The lines of interest are: wind turbines (their effect, what's good and bad about them, the business of, US government financial encouragement of), shysters and self-selected bigwigs in the community, Joe Pickett's nasty mother in law (part of every novel, but central to this one), and the running under-theme of Nate Romanowski, Joe's friend, deus-ex-machina, and his own recurring litany of prob ...more
This seemed a bit livelier than some recent entries in this series and had interesting material about the politics and financing of wind power. Also, it ended on a note of suspense that makes the reader wish to open the next book, now.
I'd like to give the book a higher rating; the final surprise was decent, the Marcus Hand/Gerry Spence character was okay (though could have used more of him), but honestly the revenge storyline with Nate was trite, the governor of the state is still a cartoon character, which makes you question his ability to find his ass let alone govern a state. The federal government workers are all buffoons, intent on causing evil against the good people of Wyoming. And the Sovereign Citizen talk of Nate an ...more
Each Joe Pickett novel is more engaging than the last. I am going to start the next one Force of Nature and I just went on Amazon and ordered the last two. C.J. Box is an entertaining writer and the way plots and characters carry over from book to book keeps me coming back. I could identify with the sentiments regarding those god awful wind turbines I passed when driving across the country. They are hideous to look at and the sound plus rumble through the ground must be maddening to nearby resid ...more
Jumping into a series in the middle sometimes is just not a good idea, and I would have to say that that holds true here. For people not familiar with the Joe Pickett series, this novel with its host of undefined characters will be hard to get into. Still, the plot is intriguing, and fans of the series who know the back stories of the characters will surely be fascinated by the turn of events. The rest of us may be left scratching our heads. But the writing is good enough and the characters inte ...more
Typical excellent Joe Pickett mystery!
Cold Wind - Joe Pickett #11 - The extraordinary new Joe Pickett novel from the Edgar Award-winning author. When Earl Alden is found dead, dangling from a wind turbine, it's his wife, Missy, who is arrested. Unfortunately for Joe Pickett, Missy is his mother-in- law, a woman he dislikes heartily, and now he doesn't know what to do-especially when the early signs point to her being guilty as sin.

But then things happen to make Joe wonder: Is Earl's death what it appears to be? Is Missy being set
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Edgar Award-winning author C.J. Box is the author of nineteen novels including the Joe Pickett series. He's also won the Anthony Award, Prix Calibre 38 (France), the Macavity Award, the Gumshoe Award, and the Barry Award. His short stories have been featured in America's Best Mystery Stories of 2006 and limited-edition printings. 2008 novel BLOOD TRAIL was nominated for the International IMPAC Dub ...more
More about C.J. Box...

Other Books in the Series

Joe Pickett (1 - 10 of 16 books)
  • Open Season (Joe Pickett, #1)
  • Savage Run (Joe Pickett, #2)
  • Winterkill (Joe Pickett, #3)
  • Trophy Hunt (Joe Pickett, #4)
  • Out Of Range (Joe Pickett, #5)
  • In Plain Sight (Joe Pickett, #6)
  • Free Fire (Joe Pickett, #7)
  • Blood Trail (Joe Pickett, #8)
  • Below Zero (Joe Pickett, #9)
  • Nowhere To Run (Joe Pickett, #10)
Open Season (Joe Pickett, #1) Blue Heaven Savage Run (Joe Pickett, #2) Force Of Nature (Joe Pickett, #12) Winterkill (Joe Pickett, #3)

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“Nothing spells trouble like two drunk cowboys with a rocket launcher.” 7 likes
“listening to Joe and after the game warden had dispatched the suffering animal. “I could see them sending someone out here to shut up The Earl once and for all. They came, shot him, and hung him from the windmill, and they were on a plane back to O’Hare by the time you found him.” “It may be what happened,” Joe said, “but it’s speculation at best. Marcus Hand sent two of his investigators east, and they may come back with something before the trial is over. But they may not. What I have trouble with in that scenario is how this Chicago hit man would know to frame Missy.” Nate said, “They had an insider.” “And who would that be?” “The same guy who told Laurie Talich where she could find me.” “Bud?” “Bingo,” Nate said. “It took a while for me to figure it out and there are still some loose ends I’d like closed, but it makes sense. Missy knew vaguely where I was living because she talks to her daughter, and last year she tried to hire me to put the fear of God into Bud, remember? She might have let it slip to her ex-husband that if he didn’t stop pining over her, she’d drive to Hole in the Wall Canyon and pick me up. Somehow, Bud found out where I was. And by happenstance, he meets a woman in the bar who has come west for the single purpose of avenging her husband. Bud has contacts with the National Guard who just returned from Afghanistan, and he was able to help her get a rocket launcher. Then he drew her a map. He must have been pretty smug about how it all worked out. He thought he was able to take me out of the picture without getting his own hands dirty.” “Bud—what’s happened to him?” Joe asked, not sure he was convinced of Nate’s theory. “Why has he gone so crazy on us?” “A man can only take so” 0 likes
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