Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Savage Run (Joe Pickett series)” as Want to Read:
Savage Run (Joe Pickett series)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Savage Run

(Joe Pickett #2)

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  16,324 ratings  ·  1,091 reviews

No way forward?
No way back?
Your time is up when you reach

Game warden Joe Pickett is called to a bizarre crime scene deep within the forests of Twelve Sleep County, Wyoming. Famous eco-activist Stewie Woods has been blown up in an explosion, along with his new bride and ten head of cattle.

The case is wrapped up too quickly: an environmental publicity stunt gone w

Kindle Edition, 300 pages
Published (first published June 2002)
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 Savage Run, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
TwoSnowShoes The Pickett family fosters one of Ote Keely's daughters, April. April's sibling died of pneumonia and her mother abandoned her after the baby was born…moreThe Pickett family fosters one of Ote Keely's daughters, April. April's sibling died of pneumonia and her mother abandoned her after the baby was born.
It's was explained in the epilogue.(less)
Jan Komrska That's not very clear, he had a woman taking care of him....…moreThat's not very clear, he had a woman taking care of him....(less)
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.09  · 
Rating details
 ·  16,324 ratings  ·  1,091 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Savage Run (Joe Pickett series)
May 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First be foremost: I am very sensitive when it comes to violence against animals so some of this book was really sad and hard for me to read. The plot in this book was interesting especially Mary Beth’s past and Joe dealing with taking the moral high ground instead of the path with no backlash. I am really glad I started this Joe Pickett series and I actually grabbed Winterkill from the library today to this week.

My quick and simple overall: interesting read but if you are a huge animal lover l
Oct 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
These are just so much fun and thought provoking too.

C.J. (Cracker Jack?) Box delivers his second Joe Pickett novel in this 2002 publication and follows up on his first with some TASTY environmental thriller action.

For those readers who don’t know yet about the coolest thing this side of the Pecos, Box’s protagonist Pickett is a Wyoming game warden – patrolling the vast wide open spaces and confronting heavily armed perpetrators and wild critters alike. All on a shoestring budget with a small fa
Joe Pickett, the Wyoming game warden introduced in Open Season, returns in this novel that is about a war between the ranchers and the environmentalists. The story opens with environmental activist Stewie Woods and his new bride, Annabel Bellotti, spiking trees and apparently killed in a massive explosion. Initially it is not known what happened and Joe gets a call from the sheriff because it is assumed elk or other wildlife will have been killed. When they arrive at the scene they find evidence ...more
I want to love these books because they came with such high recommendation. However, they are good but not wonderful! The main character is a fish and game warden, is very moral, and a bit too naive. I really hate to say it (because I should appreciate a moral, trusting character) but he was almost too good to be true. Oh, that is so sad to say. He is the kind of man who trusts in a handshake and expects that everyone will abide by the rules. I truly hope there are people like that still in the ...more
Joe Pickett is a family man and one of the few Game Wardens in Wyoming, he has a steady moral compass and is an intellegent, lawful man. In this second addition to the series Joe gets wrapped up in an environmental feud. After radicals set off an explosion in the deep woods, an investigation reveals that a cow and possibly two people were accidentally killed. Joe knows that there is more to it than that and goes back later to look into it further. When he is shot at with a long range rifle he kn ...more
Another great book by C.J. Box. This book involves conflicts between environmental extremist and a group of "ranchers". A two-man assassination team (stock detective) was sent to eliminate those on the list.

I was on the edge of my seat towards the end of this when the group escaped from the cabin and found themselves at Savage Run (interesting legend about this involving Cheyenne Indians and Pawnee warriors). After finished reading, I gave it a 4 star because of the graphic description of how w
Cathrine ☯️
3.5★ for book 2 in what has become my favorite Man Lit series. #nohasslereading

I'm so excited that I'm still early in this series because I know that I still have a ton of these books to look forward to. I'm such a Pickett fangirl, even after only two books. I hope he stays as cool as he is now.

Joe Pickett is a Wyoming game warden, not super experienced, with a slowly growing reputation in his area. He's known for being inaccurate with his gun and for being a stickler for the rules. He doesn't do drama, he doesn't have baggage, he loves his family,
Savage Run perhaps is not as good as the first book. It is still a very satisfying thriller in the Joe Pickett series.

Joe Pickett is a Wyoming game ward charged with overseeing the Big Horn Mountains in the northern part of the state. Mary Beth, Joe's wife, is a beautiful woman. As their 10 year daughter, Sheridan, observes of her mother: "Mom, you're a hottie." Mary Beth, went to college to become a lawyer. But she fell in love with Joe and they live the austere life on game warden's wages. Thi
Jan 12, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
A bit on an odd duck of a book.

Joe Pickett is doing his job, when he finds that an elk was shot out of season. The trail leads him to the usual arrogant rich guy. Meanwhile, there some environmental terrorists running around causing trouble, and an old time stock detective taking care of business.

There's theme here about how the law doesn't seem to apply to much of anybody. I wound up rooting for the stock detective, as he was the most honest person in the whole book. Pickett was mostly ineffect
May 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, audiobooks
4.5 Stars for Savage Run: A Joe Pickett Novel (audiobook) by C. J. Box read by David Chandler. I’m really enjoying this series. It’s from an interesting perspective. A Game and Fish officer in Wyoming. Murder mysteries in a beautiful setting.
Feb 05, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book starts with bang, and well it ends with one as well.
This instalment of the Joe Pickett series has way more action then we saw in the first book and it really never lets up.
Even though these books were written in the 90's the environmental issues covered are still really relevant to day. I really like the fact that Box manages to address these issues in a non preachy way.
These books are great little mysteries and certainly an entertaining way to spend an afternoon.

Book Concierge
Book # 2 in the Joe Pickett series starts with the death of an infamous environmentalist. A fire-spotter has noted the explosion, and the Sheriff, expecting some sort of poaching of elk, calls on the Wyoming Game Warden to join him in investigating. The bloody scene of destruction is not what they were expecting and the Sheriff seems particularly angry that Pickett is involved. “But,” Pickett reminds him, “YOU called me to join you.” The case is closed fairly quickly, but Joe isn’t satisfied, an ...more
Aug 03, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018-read
SAVAGE RUN is the second book in C.J. Box’s Warden Joe Pickett mystery series set in Saddlestring, Wyoming.

There are several good features of these books: they are relatively short (under 300 pages), feature characters and settings that are unusual (wide-open countryside, cowboys and other rural residents) and are relatively suspenseful.

There are problematic aspects of the books as well. Joe Pickett is VERY taciturn and shockingly inept when it comes to the political aspects of his job. He is st
CD {Boulder Blvd}
Although this series is growing on me, I wish Joe didn't make me think of Barney Fife. I think even his own daughter would be able to get the drop on him and take his weapon. The plot was really interesting, some good characters and some good historical comparisons. The negatives are that Joe seems to stumble upon clues and let's people get the drop on him. ...more
I enjoyed it as much the second time as I did the first time and will probably read it again!
Jul 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Joe Pickett is a great character and C.J. Box writes beautifully about the modern West. This is the second in the series and I am looking forward to many more, and maybe even a trip to Wyoming.
Jammin Jenny
I really enjoyed this second book in the Joe Pickett series. I think the author does a great job describing the countryside, mountains and wildlife in the Wyoming area. I especially liked when he was talking about the elk moving through the woods, followed by the wolves looking for a calf or straggler. Really fun.
May 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like the character development but I can't say I like all the characters! I am hoping Joe gets some confidence as he ages. ...more
Scott A. Miller
Mar 13, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Joe finds his way into trouble with the best of them. These books are a nice change of pace for the mystery and thriller fan. They also give those of us from the city something to think about. I love our lake house in northern Wisconsin. But it’s nothing like it is out west in the mountains. I’m glad I finally got to Box’s series.
Second in gripping series of mysteries with Wyoming game warden Joe Pickett as hero. He uses brains and grit to get out of some tough situations and renders pleasure to see the greedy take a fall. The series also nicely showcases the beauty of the Rockies--makes me miss living out West.�
Amanda Peters
Oct 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nephew Colin,

If you recall, I gave the first in the series a less than glowing review of "meh". Why did I read the next one you ask? Good question. Especially with 500 other books on my wish list...

Well, I make poor choices, and they are an easy mindless read.

Will I commit to reading the next dozen? See above.

Aunt Amanda
Aug 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book #36 - Savage Run by CJ Box - The second book in CJ Box's series about Joe Pickett. I read book #1 earlier this year.
Up until the last 100 pages I was underwhelmed by this book, preferring the first book in the series to this one and wishing there was more depth in plot and character.
But then, without giving away spoilers, the book became more interesting in the last third of the book as a character gave an interesting analysis of environmental groups and the structure of organizations. An
Apr 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: western-modern
3.5 stars

This book was a little more intriguing to me than the first. A lot less getting to know the characters and more detail to the surroundings and feelings, still just as stressful though.... lol

There is only one thing that has bothered me a little bit so far. I am not to sure (I haven't looked into it) but guessing from the writing I would say the first book on this series was the first book actually written by this author. I assume this because I feel he doesn't seem to trust the reader
Savage Run by C.J. Box is the 2nd book in the Joe Pickett and my first exposure to Wyoming Game Warden Joe Pickett. I have to say I enjoyed very much, action, intrigue and a neat character, maybe a cross between Park Ranger Anna Pigeon and Sheriff Longmire... or maybe not.

I imagine I should have read the first book in the series first but it didn't seem to be all that critical as I was introduced nicely to both Joe and his family, Marybeth and their three daughters. This story starts with what s
Laurie • The Baking Bookworm
I enjoyed the first book in this popular mystery series, Open Season, a few weeks ago so following up with Savage Run, the second book in the series, was a no brainer.

Once again the story revolves around Joe Pickett, a Wyoming Fish and Game Warden who is a good guy with morals up the wazoo but isn't the toughest law enforcement officer you've ever seen. While his heart is in the right place, his decisions and skill with weapons are often questionable. I'm hoping Joe toughens up in future books.
May 09, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The second of the charming game warden Joe Pickett series finds Joe again in Wyoming's Bighorn mountain range. A famous ecoterrorist, out peacefully spiking trees with his bride of three days, is killed by an exploding cow. Joe is drawn into this crime and must meet with the cow's owner, who seems complacent about the deaths on his ranch land. Joe wants to know why this bizarre circumstance of facts doesn't phase the jerk.

Marybeth, Joe's wife, begins receiving phone calls from an old high school
Anthony Bellaleigh
Joe Pickett #2 (the Murder Mystery sequel to Open Season) opens with a jaw dropping paragraph and then nicely propels you back into Joe's world at the edge of the Rocky Mountains.

If I'm honest, then it seemed to drift for a couple of chapters and I was wondering whether a serious case would ever emerge - and, how Joe would end up in the middle of it...? More fool me. I should be more familiar with cleverly crafted scene setting...

I recommend making sure you give yourself some serious reading tim
Mike Dellosso
Jun 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was the second C.J. Box book I've read and it won't be the last. I love his main character Joe Pickett. There were some slow moments in this book and some of the scenes seemed to drag on a bit but overall it was a fun and interesting read. There were a few surprises I didn't see coming, too, which is always a plus. I love the way Box describes the Wyoming country. Makes me want to live there. ...more
Feb 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Joe Picket, a Wyoming game warden, is a cool character! He's a "man-of-few-words" western cowboy in the modern age. This series of novels (this is #2) is perfect for folks who love thrillers, mysteries, and nature. C.J. Box has been writing since about 2000, but I've only recently gotten hooked on his work. I intend to read the rest. ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Play Book Tag: Savage Run by C.J. Box 3 stars 2 16 Sep 15, 2017 06:18AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Next to Last Stand (Walt Longmire, #16)
  • Walk the Wire (Amos Decker, #6)
  • The Sentinel (Jack Reacher, #25)
  • Boundary Waters (Cork O'Connor, #2)
  • The Cold Dish (Walt Longmire, #1)
  • Purgatory Ridge (Cork O'Connor, #3)
  • Daylight (Atlee Pine, #3)
  • The Dark Horse (Walt Longmire, #5)
  • Death Without Company (Walt Longmire, #2)
  • The Law of Innocence (Mickey Haller, #6; Harry Bosch Universe #34)
  • Copper River (Cork O'Connor, #6)
  • Fair Warning (Jack McEvoy, #3)
  • Junkyard Dogs (Walt Longmire, #6)
  • Hell Is Empty (Walt Longmire, #7)
  • Blood Hollow (Cork O'Connor, #4)
  • Land of Wolves
  • A Minute to Midnight (Atlee Pine, #2)
  • Heaven's Keep (Cork O'Connor, #9)
See similar books…
C. J. Box is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of 24 novels including the Joe Pickett series. He won the Edgar Alan Poe Award for Best Novel (Blue Heaven, 2009) as well as the Anthony Award, Prix Calibre 38 (France), the Macavity Award, the Gumshoe Award, two Barry Awards, and the 2010 Mountains & Plains Independent Booksellers Association Award for fiction. He was recently awarded the 2016 ...more

Other books in the series

Joe Pickett (1 - 10 of 21 books)
  • Open Season (Joe Pickett, #1)
  • 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)
  • Cold Wind (Joe Pickett, #11)

Related Articles

If you love a page-turning mystery, you are in for a treat this month. We're seeing a great assortment of highly anticipated mysteries and...
68 likes · 23 comments
“On the third day of their honeymoon, infamous environmental activist Stewie Woods and his new bride, Annabel Bellotti, were spiking trees in the forest when a cow exploded and blew them up. Until then, their marriage had been happy.” 31 likes
“Like most men, he had a tough time believing that his wife had had any kind of interesting life before she met him. Which was ridiculous on its face.” 5 likes
More quotes…