W.B.’s Book Report: Daughter of the Morning Star

One of the first Netflix binges we fell into was Longmire, the A&E show that was one of the first series the streaming service rescued from cancellation. After three seasons on cable, the show starring Robert Taylor, Katee Sackhoff and Lou Diamond Phillips ran for three more seasons and is still highly recommended at our house.

One of the blessings of still doing the day-job thing and commuting for an hour in each direction at 68 is audiobooks. Once I saw “From the Longmire novels by Craig Johnson” in the TV credits, I had to find out more. I had three observations, four actually: The books are better than the very fine TV show, Katee Sackhoff is great but the “real” Vic Moretti is a black-haired pistol with a fouler mouth than even cable TV allows, I love Lou Diamond Phillips but the “real” Henry Standing Bear is twice his size, and I love Robert Taylor but the “real” voice of Walt Longmire is George Guidall.

I’ve been reacquainted with the gang this week because Johnson has just released his 17th Longmire novel, Daughter of the Morning Star. The mysteries here are that someone has been sending death threats to Jaya Long One Moon, star of the Lame Deer High School girls basketball team, what happened to Jaya’s older sister, who disappeared about a year ago, and whether the two mysteries are connected.

Guidall is an acknowledged superstar in the audiobook business, having narrated more than 1,700 books to date, and at 83 he is still going strong. Having George along to tell us the story is as comfortable as getting the usual at the Busy Bee Cafe.

Walt is a skeptic about Native American spirituality and legends, but he’ll have a hard time explaining what happens in this story if he tries to do it using only the reality of this world, but it won’t be the first time. He once was lost in a blizzard and probably would have died without the aid of a powerful Cheyenne friend who just happened to be recently deceased.

The book also has a “ripped from today’s headlines” angle as it references the shocking number of Native American women who have simply disappeared, or rather it’s a tragedy that ought to be headline news but tends to be overlooked, especially if there’s an attractive blonde gone missing.

If you’re a Longmire fan but didn’t know Johnson had a new book out, well, here it is! If you haven’t sampled the books yet, well, I envy you for all of the fun you have ahead of you. Me, I’m looking forward to getting in the car this morning to hear what happens next.

Published by WarrenBluhm

Wordsmith and podcaster, Warren is a reporter, editor and storyteller who lives near the shores of Green Bay with his wife, two golden retrievers, Dejah and Summer, and Blackberry, an insistent cat. Author of Full, Refuse to be Afraid, Gladness is Infectious, 24 flashes, How to Play a Blue Guitar, Myke Phoenix: The Complete Novelettes, A Bridge at Crossroads, The Imaginary Bomb, A Scream of Consciousness, and The Imaginary Revolution.

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