The Cold Dish (2004), the first novel in the Walt Longmire series by Craig Johnson, is a breezy and stylish mystery. The series, recently popularized by an award-winning A&E television series, begins with the discovery of a corpse of Cody Pritchard, a much-disliked young man. The title, of course, refers to revenge, and Longmire, the veteran sheriff of Absaroka County in the Bighorn Mountain Country in Wyoming, would rather drink beer than investigate. But he is far from the usual loner cop and
He dispatches Deputy Victoria Moretti, a brittle and profane cop transplanted from Philadelphia, to the scene. They soon discover someone killed the young victim with a .45-70 buffalo rifle–an unusual weapon that unfortunately is fairly common in rural Absaroka County. Soon another corpse turns up and Longmire, with the help of Moretti and his best friend Henry Standing Bear, doggedly solves the crime.
Review by Peter at the Vernon Branch