Sunday, November 16, 2014

Another Man's Moccasins

by Craig Johnson
290 pgs  (Longmire series #4)

Another Man's Moccasins is the fourth book in Craig Johnson's ever-more-popular series featuring Wyoming Sheriff Walt Longmire. I enjoyed all three of the previous books in the series but with this one Johnson really seems to have hit his stride as an author. Its predecessors were all fun and entertaining murder mysteries, but with this one, Johnson adds another layer to his writing style.

Johnson tells two different stories, both mysteries, but separated by decades of Longmire's life in this book. In the present day, Walt is faced with investigating the death of a young Vietnamese girl whose body was dumped along the side of the highway. The prime suspect is an enormous Native American who has been living in a culvert underneath the freeway for several years. Walt discovers a picture on the young woman's body--a picture of himself as a young military inspector in Vietnam during the war. This picture forces Walt to replay in his memories a crime he investigated back in Vietnam in 1968.

As the book progresses, the story switches back and forth between the two times in Walt's life. Both investigations are captivating and the book as a whole is extremely well written, filled with moments of action and close calls. But I think the real accomplishment with this book is the added layer of humanity that Johnson is able to write into his protagonist. I'm a big fan of Johnson's creation, both in the books, and on the TV series, which hopefully will begin again soon. The character, as he's presented in this installment of the series is a major reason why he's so endearing.

★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

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