Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Spirit Dances (Walker Papers, #6)” as Want to Read:
Spirit Dances (Walker Papers, #6)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Spirit Dances

(Walker Papers #6)

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  5,130 ratings  ·  218 reviews

For Seattle detective Joanne Walker, spring is about new beginnings. She's mastered her shamanic abilities (mostly), survived a cannibalistic serial killer (barely) and now she's facing the biggest challenge of her careerattending a dance concert with her sexy boss, Captain Michael Morrison. But when the performancebilled as transformativeactually changes her into a coyote
ebook, 384 pages
Published April 1st 2011 by Luna (first published January 1st 2011)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Spirit Dances, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Spirit Dances

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
4.23  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,130 ratings  ·  218 reviews

More filters
Sort order
The Flooze
That was exciting.

Spirit Dances is probably the most cohesive, well-plotted story since the first of the series. It takes all of Murphy’s promises and hints and brings them to the fore in the great mash-up of change and progress I hoped was on its way. Although I’ve been frustrated at times by Joanne’s brute force way of dealing with magic, this installment strongly reinforces the idea of a build-up to transition. It’s now very clear that Joanne had to undergo all her flailing and wailing to pr
Feb 07, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I reviewed Demon Hunts (Walker Papers, Book 5) by C E Murphy, I said that it was the best in the Walker Papers series to date. Well, as befits a series, Spirit Dances (Luna Books) trumps its predecessor as the best book in the Walker Papers. And, the ending leads one to believe that there are better books to come.

The book opens with promise. Joanne actually ends up, albeit accidentally, on a date with Morrison. They are attending a performance of a Native American spirit dance, which I exp
Faith Hunter
Apr 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I could NOT put it down. I finished last night. OMGosh! Sooooo good! I wich there were 6 stars!
Love love love this book!
May 12, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I think I’m going to take a little break from this series.. I am primarily a romance reader. I mean urban fantasy, oPNR, historical.. anything but It all has romance. This series doesn’t have enough romance for me. And honestly with all the mystical crap that happens.. I have no idea what’s really happening. Seriously I have no clue. But it really comes down to the lack of romance. So eh.. I’ll eventually pick the next one up. Mainly because it’s part of the romance package with audible and it’s ...more
May 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Finally some resolution... AND THEN NONE! I've loved this series because of the complex characterization that Murphy includes with Joanne Walker and Morrison. They have been like oil and water from day one but now they seem to be oil and vinaigrette on a tasty salad. The growth both exhibit has made the relationship believable and based on mutual respect, attraction, caring, and perhaps love. Like any good author Murphy gives us a mere HINT of the possibilities before flinging Jo back into the m ...more
FINALLY! It only took them six books. That sounds so crass to say, like it's all that I got out of this book. This author is consistently one of my favorites. I seem to have developed some weakness for Native American female leads who are mechanics and have some kind of supernatural lifestyle and responsibility thrust upon them. I don't know what to do with that but I will take it since it makes me happy.
I'm unsure how much I like Jo's transformation. I rather liked the bumbling Jo who really ha
Jul 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have enjoyed the other 5 books in this series, but this one was my favorite BY FAR. What I liked:

1. More Morrison. Woohoo!
2. The plot and mystery were great and kept me trying to figure out what was going to happen next
3. Our little Joanie has grown up and actually thinks (a little) before she acts. She has also become more accepting of herself, her abilities, and the magic community.
4. Joanne asks for help when it's needed from both friends and her spirit guides showing that she has matured.
This is definitely my favorite book of the series. Well, so far...I have yet to read the last three. But this one is so great. I couldn't put it down.

Joanne grows exponentially, finally really starting to come into her own. In regards to her relationships, (view spoiler)
May 12, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Coming Into Her Own
It's been fifteen months since cop mechanic and cynic Joanne Walker became warrior shaman and Seattle detective. In those fifteen months, she's been stabbed, hung, strung out, strung up, wiped out and beat down. She's done battle with creatures that aren't supposed to exist outside of grim horror stories or fantasy books. She's had crises of faith, been riddled with self doubt and guilt, and gotten several close friends almost killed just by associating with her. But she ain't
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oh my goodness!! The ending to Spirit Dances totally knocked me over. Don't get me wrong, it was a good knock-me-over, but I'm still digesting it... On the one hand, I'm soooooooo happy for Joanne. On the other I'm like, "wait, what???" Way for C.E. Murphy to leave me hanging! When is Raven Calls coming out? Aargh!!!

Ok, ok, let's start at the beginning. After Demon Hunts, which I cannot believe I didn't review (I will have to rectify that oversight!!), Joanne's made some discoveries about her ma
Sep 15, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
OMFG. Seriously. I wouldn't have classified the Walker Papers series in my top paranormal romance picks before #6 here. I mean, I'd read them all, but hadn't paid much attention to when #6 was being released (like I do w/ my Kate Daniels & Mercedes Thompson books). In fact, I believe this actually came out in April. That's right - five whole months before I even noticed.

BUT BUT BUT - I read it in one sitting, have subsequently read it again , and have read the last half of the last chapter
Mar 11, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Joanne thought she had faced down some pretty tough situations in the past, but nothing compares to her date with Morrison. She accidentally asks him to a dance concert, and somehow he says yes. Things are already pretty complicated between then, and a date that gets messed up by the supernatural, well that just doesn't help at all. When the dance concert turns her into a coyote right in front of Morrison, Joanne wants to just curl up and die. Add in all of the other craziness going on with home ...more
Apr 04, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
There are so many things that I love about this series, seeing Joanne grow through out it, her friendship with Billy and Melinda, and her tumultuous relationship with Morrison. This book was great as they were all at the center of it, all it was missing was Gary, who is the best sidekick for Joanne.

Joanne has been through a lot and grown to accept being a Shaman. While she doesn't always know what she is doing, she does so with her heart in the right place. This time around it is no different. S
4,5 stars

So far, my favourite book in the series!
From reticent shaman to someone who finally feels confortable in her skin, Joanne's character has really undergo some monumental changes.

She continues to be her same "funny" self. She has one of the craziest senses of humour i've met in a book, and then she's surrounded by a vast number of interesting and complex characters, like her colleague Billy, who up until a few books ago, used to appear in the police precint in high heels and dresses. I wo
Feb 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this latest installment of the Walker Papers series because I think Joanne has finally grown-up. She has come to terms with her shamanic powers and is really learning to take responsibility. I liked how she had more confidence. Now, she’s not perfect because lets be honest that would not be Joanne-style. She makes mistakes with the best intentions and spends twice as much time trying to fix them. Her big mistake involves Morrison this time. Yes, it’s unexpected but good.

Feb 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Good First-person narratives are hard to find.
Grade: A
The Story:
Detective and Shaman Joanne Walker is accepting her dual nature as a healer and warrior. She has a long-running "Not a Thing" thing with her boss, the handsome Captain Morrison. Her mentor, Coyote, is her spiritual and shaman guide into multiple planes of existence and she is learning and sometimes going beyond his teachings.
Jo is at a dance performance on a date with her boss when the lead dancer is murdered using psychic energy
Jan 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc, to-review, netgalley
Published on my blog: Welcome to Larissa's Bookish Life

*Contains SPOILERS for the previous books in the series.

Joanne is back and I am so happy about it! This is the first series ever that I started a few books in and did NOT read the previous books and even though doing that is a pet peeve of mine, I really enjoyed Demon Hunts last year and Spirit Dances is even better!

Spirit Dances starts not so long after the events of Demon Hunts. Coyote has gone back to Arizona and Joanne is trying to just
Janet Whalen
Apr 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
C.E. Murphy continues the story of Joanne Walker, reluctant shaman. As her power grows, she is learning to control it, but is still prone to major magical mishaps. Joanne, a Seattle police detective and her boss, Captain Morrison, have been trying to be professional and not give in to their mutual attraction. When Joanne accidentally asks him to join her at a dance performance, things get magically mucked up. The troupe does modern interpretations of Native American dances, and are quite aware t ...more
♆ BookAddict  ✒ La Crimson Femme
Joanne is once again in a sticky situation. Amusingly enough, she even compares herself to Angela Lansbury. This story references more American pop culture then many of the books I've recently read. I like this since my mind works in similar patterns of making connections by concepts. I digress. Joanne is starting to remind me of Anita Blake. Each story she increases in power exponentially. She also is starting to settle in and accept that she's becoming more powerful. At least Joanne doesn't hu ...more
Lynsey   (A Bookish Life)

This was a great book, and easily my favourite so far. As you can see from the back-cover blurb Joanne actually goes on a date with Morrison! Did you hear what I said? A Date! With Morrison! I know!

Of course partially shifting into a Coyote during a "special" dance performance will put a dampener on most romantic evenings, still, progress is progress and I'm taking it where I can get it!

I don't want to spoil the rest of the plot from here but lets just say that, whereas other books have inv
Beth Cato
Apr 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ah, Joanne. The lovely thing about these books is that Jo manages to find entirely new ways to screw up, and it creates a delightful ride for the reader. There are many reasons why I consider this to be my favorite urban fantasy series, but a lot of it comes down to Jo. She's nice and approachable. Sure, she has a hard edge and can kick hiney in a fight if needed, but she's also a healer at heart. I can't help but love a Seattle cop-turned-shaman with a fondness for maple-covered donuts.[return] ...more
By turns the world that this series is set in has weird, wacky and wonderful moments. Spirit Dances has more than it's fair share that is for sure, yet we find Joanne Walker at her best in this one even when things seem to be the worst for her.

What I really enjoyed was at the end she finally got her hearts desire, although she did not have more than a few moments to savor the victory before heading to the airport to catch a flight out of the country.

In book 7 Raven Calls it sounds like we look f
Lori {Romancing the Dark Side}
An original and addictive urban fantasy!

I fell in love with Joanne's character from the first page. She's complex but very ballsy and definitely isn't afraid to speak her mind. She's a very likeable heroine who isn't perfect and doesn't pretend to be. There are some great secondary characters as well that add humor and depth to the story. The tension between Joanne and Morrison is outstanding, I was glued to the pages whenever they had a moment together.

There's a little danger, mystery, humor a
Sylvia McIvers
The dance team in this book was the most exciting element. They are worth the time it takes to read the book. Working together to do medicine-work on the audience - not a big thing, just make everyone feel a bit better, a bit healthier, a bit stronger - sign me up!

The shaman-detective has spiritual powers, romance at work, romance with her teacher, and the two romantic leads don't like each other. Surprise, not. Also talks to Coyote Spirit occasionally, now that's interesting. Biggest problem a
Jess the Romanceaholic
This is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.

I come to this series as a virgin reader (heh). I’ve never read anything by C.E. Murphy, and as such, I am reviewing this story based on how well it works as a standalone work.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this read. I definitely want to go back and read the rest of the series despite knowing how a lot of the situations will end up through references made in this story. I enjoyed the first person POV, and even when thi
Kathy Martin
Mar 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Joanne Walker, shaman and police detective, begins this story forced to shoot a suspect to save her partner which throws her magic in chaos as healers aren't supposed to cause damage. While suspended for the investigation, she connects with a formerly homeless woman whose life she saved and is given tickets to a theatrical performance of Native American dances. The dancers are channeling all kinds of energy and someone is out to steal it killing the central dancer in the attempt. Joanne, along w ...more
Eleni Konstantine
Loved this instalment of The Walker Papers. We see a little more confident Joanne doing her Shaman thing with the help of her friends, Billy and Melinda, and of course her boss and love interest, Morrison - who she turns accidentally into a huge wolf. Whoops.

Love the banter between Joanne and Morrison (Michael) and love where things are headed. About time. Still it's an ongoing series, so more twists and turns to come no doubt.
Deborah Blake
Jun 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have never read anything by C. E. Murphy that didn't make me think: Wow--this is one of the best books ever! Spirit Dances is now added to that list. Book Six in THE WALKER PAPERS series, Spirit Dances follows the continuing adventures of Seattle detective--and urban shaman--Joanne Walker. I strongly recommend all the books in this series for their strong character and world-building and stories that take your breath away on the first page and never give it back until you close the book.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Winter Moon (Walker Papers, #1.5)
  • Tricks of the Trade (Paranormal Scene Investigations, #3)
  • Magic on the Line (Allie Beckstrom, #7)
  • The Neon Graveyard (Signs of the Zodiac, #6)
  • Mercy Blade (Jane Yellowrock, #3)
  • One Salt Sea (October Daye, #5)
  • Labyrinth (Greywalker, #5)
  • Skeleton Crew (Underworld Cycle, #2)
  • Shady Lady (Corine Solomon, #3)
See similar books…
C.E. Murphy is a writer of fantasy novels and short stories. She also writes "action-adventure romance" novels under the pseudonym Cate Dermody, which was her grandmother's maiden name.

Other books in the series

Walker Papers (9 books)
  • Urban Shaman  (Walker Papers, #1)
  • Thunderbird Falls  (Walker Papers, #2)
  • Coyote Dreams (Walker Papers, #3)
  • Walking Dead (Walker Papers, #4)
  • Demon Hunts (Walker Papers, #5)
  • Raven Calls (Walker Papers, #7)
  • Mountain Echoes (Walker Papers, #8)
  • Shaman Rises (Walker Papers, #9)
“Rita folded her arms around herself and peered up at me. “If you’d asked me
three months ago I’d have said you were hitting the bottle too hard. But then I
got stabbed and should have died, but instead a bunch of cops and ambulance
people showed up because somebody who wasn’t even there sent them on ahead to save my life. If something like that happens to someone like me, you start to
have a little faith in something bigger. I don’t know if I believe in magic or miracles all the time. But I believe in you, Detective Walker. I believe in you.”
“What do you suppose we would do," I said conversationally, "if we ever had sex? I mean, what would we call each other? Captain and Walker? Morrison and Detective? Or would we just find excuses to not call each other anything?” 0 likes
More quotes…