The Long Night of Winchell Dear by Robert James Waller
A Novel

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 3 Critic Reviews



The steady tick of an aged Regulator wall clock and the squeak of an overhead fan turning slowly are soft but insistent, counting down the night, while the high desert thrums like a half-remembered Victrola song. The sounds are below the consciousness of Winchell Dear, an old-time gambler, a Texas poker player on the southern circuit, as he waits for something . . . something vague that his life of chance tells him is evil and moving his way. He has gassed and oiled the Cadillac and adjusts the pistol in his right boot, then plays one of the six fiddle tunes he knows, thinking back to his good days with Lucinda Miller. Alone, he waits in his remote ranch house, while, just outside, an acquaintance named Luther hunts, unblinking and of nervous temperament and moving through yellow primrose bending in the night wind.

In Diablo Canyon, a distant part of Winchell Dear’s ranch, Peter Long Grass squats by a campfire, contemplating the profile he saw moving along the ridge of Guapa Mountain an hour ago, thinking about the gambler’s housekeeper, Sonia Dominguez, about the small, quiet world he has fashioned far from civilization and what undefined presence might now be threatening it. He gathers his tools and begins to run across the desert floor.

And boring toward all of them is a cream-colored Lincoln Continental with two men aboard. Traveling from Los Angeles on a mission they’ve been given, they are professionals, cool and implacable at the start, but becoming steadily more confused by the strange landscape they are passing through. Forty minutes from their task, they ready themselves, while a kitchen wall clock ticks its way through the long night of Winchell Dear.

The Long Night of Winchell Dear finds master storyteller Robert James Waller at his best as he takes us through the wind and dust of the high desert mountains, into the shadowy world of high-stakes poker fought in the back rooms of Amarillo and Little Rock, and headlong toward the book’s stunning finale of chaotic terror, where an unexpected hero emerges.

From the Hardcover edition.

About Robert James Waller

See more books from this Author
Robert James Waller was born in Rockford, Iowa and attended the University of Iowa, the University of Northern Iowa and the Indiana University School of Business. He was a professor of management and, later, dean of the business school at the University of Northern Iowa. He has written short stories and novels, but is best known as the author of The Bridges of Madison County, which was adapted into a movie starring Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep. The book surpassed Gone with the Wind as the bestselling novel of all time. Waller received the Literary Lion Award from the New York Public Library.
Published November 14, 2006 by Crown. 160 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Science Fiction & Fantasy. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Long Night of Winchell Dear

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

Waller’s nostalgic, low-strumming latest novel (after High Plains Tango, 2005) is a wispy distillation of several hard-bitten voices scratching out a living in the Texas desert.

| Read Full Review of The Long Night of Winchell De...

RT Book Reviews

Search books by title, genre, publication month, publication year, and rating or search by any combination of these options (i.e.

| Read Full Review of The Long Night of Winchell De...

Entertainment Weekly

Robert James Waller's The Long Night of Winchell Dear, while packed with familiar characters — the grizzled poker player, the Mexican drug smuggler, the resident Comanche, the seven-foot diamondback rattlesnake — is pretty entertaining, with nary a whiff of the smarmy romance that's plagued Wa...

Nov 10 2006 | Read Full Review of The Long Night of Winchell De...

Reader Rating for The Long Night of Winchell Dear

An aggregated and normalized score based on 26 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review