cover image A Serpent's Tooth

A Serpent's Tooth

Craig Johnson. Viking, $26.95 (353p) ISBN 978-0-670-02645-6

Just in time for the second season of the A&E TV series Longmire comes bestseller Johnson’s deeply satisfying ninth Walt Longmire novel (after 2012’s As the Crow Flies). On the personal front, the Wyoming sheriff worries about his deepening relationship with Victoria “Vic” Moretti, his intelligent undersheriff, because of their age difference and because he’s the boss. A more serious worry for Walt is Cord Lynear, who appears to be about 15 and is looking for his mother. A delusional homeless man appoints himself Cord’s bodyguard. Cord turns out to be a “lost boy,” kicked out of a secretive polygamous group led by his stepfather, Roy Lynear, which has been putting down roots in nearby states. Although the zealots use teenage guards so inexperienced they don’t even know where the safety is on their guns, nothing is amateurish about the thugs who control the compound. Suspense propels the brisk plot, complemented by a sly sense of humor and a breathtaking look at Wyoming. 12-city author tour. Agent: Gail Hochman, Brandt & Hochman Literary Agents. (June)