Books by C.J. Box

C.J. Box is the author of 11 novels featuring protagonist Joe Pickett, and two standalone novels, including 2008’s Edgar Award-winning Blue Heaven. But Box isn't just a novelist; he has worked as a ranch hand, surveyor, fishing guide, a small town newspaper reporter and editor, and he co-owns an international tourism marketing firm. His latest novel, Cold Wind is out next week. Photo credit: Dove Studios


STONE COLD by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: March 11, 2014

"Suspenseful yet routine, with oversized bogeymen who seem more menacing than they really are, ethical dilemmas that dissolve under pressure and an ending that tests your tolerance for coincidence. Below average for this splendid yet checkered series."
Joe Pickett's fantastical 14th pits him against a nest of assassins that just happens to include his old pal Nate Romanowski. Read full book review >
THE HIGHWAY by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: July 30, 2013

"Box handles this foolproof formula with complete assurance, keeping the pot at a full boil until the perfunctory, anticlimactic and unsatisfactory ending."
The creator of Wyoming Fish and Game Warden Joe Pickett (Breaking Point, 2013, etc.) works the area around Yellowstone National Park in this stand-alone about a long-haul trucker with sex and murder on his mind. Read full book review >
BREAKING POINT by C.J. Box
Released: March 12, 2013

"Its basis in a real-life conflict makes Joe's 13th case one of his most tendentious, but it's Box who makes it one of his most exciting."
Wyoming Fish and Game Warden Joe Pickett, who attracts trouble the way carcasses attract maggots (Force of Nature, 2012, etc.), gets in the line of fire between an old friend and the Feds. Read full book review >
FORCE OF NATURE by C.J. Box
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 20, 2012

"The secret is preposterous but serviceable, and the strenuously unnuanced story moves like greased lightning. Box has done much better work, but this high-casualty actioner is just fine."
The dark past from which Nate Romanowski's hidden for so long and so successfully finally catches up with him and his friend, Wyoming Fish and Game Warden Joe Pickett (Cold Wind, 2011, etc.). Read full book review >
BACK OF BEYOND by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Aug. 2, 2011

"Once again, Box provides the complete suspense package: unobtrusively slick detection, buckets of surprises and mounting thrills, all amid his trademark settings in the majestic high country."
A second standalone from the chronicler of Twelve Sleep County Game Warden Joe Pickett (Cold Wind, 2011, etc.) takes a Montana cop deep into the wilds of Yellowstone National Park in the hope of protecting his teenaged son from a determined killer. Read full book review >
COLD WIND by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: March 22, 2011

"Joe, who insists that "I'm not on a side," spends more time than he'd like in rooms with ceilings, but the mystery is strong enough to compensate, and the revelations about wind farms will curl your hair no matter which side you're on."
Wyoming Fish and Game Warden Joe Pickett's fondest dream becomes his worst nightmare when his loathsome mother-in-law is arrested for murder. Read full book review >
NOWHERE TO RUN by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: April 6, 2010

"After an uncharacteristically weak outing (Below Zero, 2009), it's great to see the usual Box strengths—exhilarating landscapes, high adventure, thrilling suspense, surprising moral quandaries—done to a turn."
Wyoming game warden Joe Pickett's last patrol before he returns to his family and his old posting in Twelve Sleep County leads to another round of tense high-country adventure. Read full book review >
BELOW ZERO by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 23, 2009

"Though one of Box's plot twists pays off in spades, most of them don't, and the latest round of Joe's unending domestic troubles reads like soap opera. Despite incidental pleasures, this is the weakest of Joe's nine cases to date."
Wyoming Game Warden Joe Pickett (Blood Trail, 2008, etc.) is at it again. Read full book review >
BLOOD TRAIL by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: May 20, 2008

"More of a western than a mystery, like most of Joe's adventures, and all the better for the open physical clashes that periodically release the tension between the scheming adversaries."
Wyoming Game and Fish Warden Joe Pickett (Free Fire, 2007, etc.), once again at the governor's behest, stalks the wraithlike figure who's targeting elk hunters for death. Read full book review >
BLUE HEAVEN by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 10, 2008

"Dropping the whodunit element that's always been the weakest part of Pickett's cases, Box alternates violence with surprising tenderness in a suspenseful tour de force."
All hell breaks loose in Kootenai Bay, Idaho, after two children on a fishing trip witness an execution in this stand-alone from the chronicler of Game Warden Joe Pickett (Free Fire, 2007, etc.). Read full book review >
FREE FIRE by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: May 10, 2007

"Middling for this fine series, which automatically makes it one of the season's highlights. "
Fired from his job as Game and Fish Warden after wrapping up his colorful sixth case (In Plain Sight, 2006), Joe Pickett returns to nab the perpetrator of the perfect crime. Read full book review >
IN PLAIN SIGHT by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: May 1, 2006

"Despite an encore roster of perps and felonies that plays like a Greatest Hits list from Joe's first five adventures, Box continues to write the sharpest suspensers west of the Pecos."
After an eventful trip to Jackson Hole (Out of Range, 2005), Wyoming Fish and Game Warden Joe Pickett is back in Twelve Sleep County for a homecoming that's anything but homey. Read full book review >
OUT OF RANGE by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: May 5, 2005

"Joe's fifth case is his best balanced, most deeply felt and most mystifying to date: an absolute must."
Crime-fighting Wyoming game warden Joe Pickett outdoes himself during a temporary transfer from sleepy Saddlestring to fashionable Jackson Hole. Read full book review >
TROPHY HUNT by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: July 1, 2004

"Not this time, though. The fact-based mutilations are so outré you just know the answer's going to be a letdown, and it is—even though Joe and his family sweat out suspenseful duels with a self-styled paranormal expert and a trusted neighbor."
Dead fish and game are only the appetizers for Warden Joe Pickett's biggest problems in his fourth case. Read full book review >
WINTERKILL by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: May 12, 2003

"The loose ends that make this the least satisfactory of Joe's three cases to date still don't inhibit Box's gift for nonstop action and his ability to see every side of the most divisive issues in the West."
The latest in an award-winning series set in the Bighorn Mountains (Savage Run, 2002, etc.). Read full book review >
OPEN SEASON by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: July 9, 2001

"First of a welcome new series, though it's hard to imagine tourism-marketing exec Box topping his debut."
Rookie Twelve Sleep County Game Warden Joe Pickett's not much of a shot, and he's been looking like a goat ever since poacher Ote Keeley got the drop on him with his own gun during a routine arrest. Read full book review >
SAVAGE RUN by C.J. Box
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 1, 2001

"If the bad guys' posturing makes them just a little too obvious from the beginning, Box still displays a gimlet eye for zealots, hypocrites, and poseurs of every stripe, from gentlemen ranchers to squeamish wolf-huggers—proving that Joe's sizzling debut (Open Season, 2001) was no fluke."
In his time, Stewie Woods was the most active environmental activist imaginable. Read full book review >