Dark Sacred Night (Renee Ballard #2, Harry Bosch #21) by Michael Connelly

Book Description:

Published: October 30, 2018

Format: Audio/OverDrive

LAPD Detective Renée Ballard teams up with Harry Bosch in the new thriller from #1 NYT bestselling author Michael Connelly.

Renée Ballard is working the night beat again, and returns to Hollywood Station in the early hours only to find a stranger rifling through old file cabinets. The intruder is retired detective Harry Bosch, working a cold case that has gotten under his skin. Ballard kicks him out, but then checks into the case herself and it brings a deep tug of empathy and anger.

Bosch is investigating the death of fifteen-year-old Daisy Clayton, a runaway on the streets of Hollywood who was brutally murdered and her body left in a dumpster like so much trash. Now, Ballard joins forces with Bosch to find out what happened to Daisy and finally bring her killer to justice.

Review –

“Harry Bosch, who just can’t stay retired, unwillingly teams up with a Hollywood detective who has reasons of her own for wanting in on his latest cold case.

It may be nine years since 15-year-old runaway Daisy Clayton was grabbed from the streets of Los Angeles and killed, but the daily presence of her mother, Elizabeth, in Harry’s life—she’s staying at his place while he helps her stay clean—makes it a foregone conclusion that he’ll reopen the case. On the night Bosch drops into Hollywood Division to sneak a look at some of the old files, he’s caught by Detective Renée Ballard, who was bounced from LAPD Robbery/Homicide to “the late show,” Hollywood’s third shift, after her complaint about aggressive harassment by a superior went nowhere. Bosch needs to find out who was responsible for what happened to Daisy; Ballard needs to work a case with teeth, even if she’s partnering with a reserve investigator in the San Fernando Police Department (Two Kinds of Truth, 2017, etc.) who’d rather work alone. Before they get what they need, they’ll have to wade through a double caseload as grueling and sometimes as maddeningly routine as you can imagine, from an apparent murder that turns out to be a slip-and-fall to an ancient gang killing whose repercussions flare to sudden life to the theft of some valuable Andy Warhol prints to a missing man who’s not just missing—not to mention Elizabeth’s sudden disappearance and Ballard’s continuing lack of support, and sometimes even backup, from her department. Not even the canniest readers are likely to see which of these byways will end up leading to the long-overdue solution to the riddle of Daisy Clayton’s death.

Fans who don’t think the supporting cases run away with the story will marvel at Connelly’s remarkable ability to keep them all not only suitably mystifying, but deeply humane, as if he were the Ross Macdonald of the police procedural.” Kirkus Review

Five stars!

After reading The Late Show last December I said the Michael Connelly had hit a home run with the new character of Renee Ballard and this book solidly confirmed it. Adding to it, she partners with Harry Bosch on a cold case and together they save each others lives and solve both cases.  Fantastic!!!!

Now, I have to wait another year for the next installment but I know it will be worth it!

 

 

 

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The Wrong Side of Good-Bye(Harry Bosch #21, Harry Bosch Universe #26) by Michael Connelly

Book Description:

Published: November 1, 2016

Format: Audio/Audible

Detective Harry Bosch must track down someone who may never have existed in the new thriller from #1 New York Timesbestselling author Michael Connelly.

Harry Bosch is California’s newest private investigator. He doesn’t advertise, he doesn’t have an office, and he’s picky about who he works for, but it doesn’t matter. His chops from thirty years with the LAPD speak for themselves.

Soon one of Southern California’s biggest moguls comes calling. The reclusive billionaire is nearing the end of his life and is haunted by one regret. When he was young, he had a relationship with a Mexican girl, his great love. But soon after becoming pregnant, she disappeared. Did she have the baby? And if so, what happened to it?

Desperate to know whether he has an heir, the dying magnate hires Bosch, the only person he can trust. With such a vast fortune at stake, Harry realizes that his mission could be risky not only for himself but for the one he’s seeking. But as he begins to uncover the haunting story–and finds uncanny links to his own past–he knows he cannot rest until he finds the truth.

At the same time, unable to leave cop work behind completely, he volunteers as an investigator for a tiny cash-strapped police department and finds himself tracking a serial rapist who is one of the most baffling and dangerous foes he has ever faced.

Review –

Everyone familiar with the Harry Bosch series know of  Harry’s on-again-off-again relationship with the Los Angeles Police Department. (He won a lawsuit against it for forcing him into early retirement. Still, hostilities persist.) But now Harry  has a new police job, working for the City of San Fernando. San Fernando is a 2.3-square-mile enclave inside Los Angeles, but it has its own small police force, which makes it the perfect hide-out for a loner like Harry. Since Harry works for no pay, he can also take on private investigations.

He takes a commission from a very old and wealthy recluse, Whitney Vance. Harry has an audience with Vance at the older man’s Pasadena estate and is treated to an eerie story. Fifty years ago, Vance was in love with a Mexican girl named Vibiana. She became pregnant, and the Vance family separated him from her forever. Now in his mid-80s, Vance has no known heirs and would like Harry to discover whether there are unknown ones.

There must because the book begins with a Vietnam-era prologue in which a young man, shot down in a helicopter, inexplicably cries out the name “Vibiana!” But Harry quickly discovers that Vance’s teenage sweetheart committed suicide not long after her baby was born and given up for adoption. So where do he and the book go from there? Leave it Harry, he is like a dog with a bone when faced with what seem like impossible odds. Does he find the child and he is dead or alive and did they have heirs?  Not telling. You’ll have to read the book.

The other case in the book, which he is working for the City of San Fernando, is that of the “Screen Cutter”, a rapist who gains access to homes by cutting open window screens. Does Harry find the culprit and will it happen before another innocent woman is violated” Again, not telling.

Harry drives a LOT in this book and the author is very descriptive with the routes and landscape and they come to life for the reader, which makes for a very enjoyable read on its own.

Excellent read for fans of Harry Bosch and those who just love a great “who-dun-it”.

Five stars.

 

 

 

Lost Light (Harry Bosch #9) by Michael Connelly

Book Description:

Published: March 1, 2004

Format: Audio/OverDrive

The vision has haunted him for four years–a young woman lying crumpled in death, her hand outstretched in silent supplication. Harry Bosch was taken off the Angella Benton murder case when the production assistant’s death was linked with the violent theft of two million dollars from a movie set. Both files were never closed. Now retired from the L.A.P.D., Bosch is determined to find justice for Angella. Without a badge to open doors and strike fear into the guilty, he’s on his own. And even in the face of an opponent more powerful and ruthless than any he’s ever encountered, Bosch is not backing down.

Review –

I’ve read or listened to most of the Harry Bosch series but every once in a while I will come across one that’s I’ve missed. This was one and when I found it available on OverDrive I checked it out.

Writing in the first person for the first time, Connelly finally gets us inside Bosch’s head and it really gives us an insight to how his mind works. Great job on the author’s part.

Recalling the opening of Raymond Chandler’s The Big Sleep, Bosch shows up at a rich movie executive’s home in his best suit. He has gone to ask about a woman who was murdered when Bosch was still on the police force. You see, when Bosch retired, he took his unsolved case files with him, and some of the untouched cases still haunt him.

The woman Bosch is asking about was killed at the movie exec’s studio and the case was eventually overlooked, when an armored truck delivering two million dollars as a movie prop was hijacked. But Bosch never forgets, and after asking around, he gets warnings from some of his old co-workers, namely Kiz Rider, who asks him to stay out of the case.

As Bosch begins to sift through the murder, the FBI, a paraplegic ex-cop, productions studios, his former wife, and Hollywood clubs become involved. When one of the marked dollar bills from the robbery turns up with a suspected terrorist, Bosch becomes entangled with the newly created Homeland Security division of the FBI. This is where Connelly begins to shine. He ratchets up the suspense as Bosch becomes more and more involved with the Feds, who are trying to keep him off the case. But in true private investigator tradition, Bosch only becomes more stubbornly determined to solve the case.

Particularly enjoyable are those scenes when we follow Harry as he tries to interview suspects and find clues, and the difficulty he has making the transition from an insider to an outsider. The interactions with characters, the paraplegic especially, have a very dark and moody feel.

The ending of the story is a surprise and a tear-jerker (at least for me), but works with Connelly’s theme of balancing the light and darkness of his mission, and the last third of the book is absolutely riveting.

I’m going to re-check my list to see if I have missed any other Harry Bosch gems and find them if I can.

 

The Burning Room (Harry Bosch #19) by Michael Connelly

Book Description

November 3, 2014
In the new thriller from #1 New York Times bestselling author Michael Connelly, Detective Harry Bosch and his rookie partner investigate a cold case that gets very hot… very fast.

In the LAPD’s Open-Unsolved Unit, not many murder victims die a decade after the crime. So when a man succumbs to complications from being shot by a stray bullet ten years earlier, Bosch catches a case in which the body is still fresh, but any other clues are virtually nonexistent. Even a veteran cop would find this one tough going, but Bosch’s new partner, Detective Lucia Soto, has no homicide experience. A young star in the department, Soto has been assigned to Bosch so that he can pass on to her his hard-won expertise.
Now Bosch and Soto are tasked with solving a murder that turns out to be highly charged and politically sensitive. Beginning with the bullet that has been lodged for years in the victim’s spine, they must pull new leads from years-old evidence, and these soon reveal that the shooting was anything but random.
As their investigation picks up speed, it leads to another unsolved case with even greater stakes: the deaths of several children in a fire that occurred twenty years ago. But when their work starts to threaten careers and lives, Bosch and Soto must decide whether it is worth risking everything to find the truth, or if it’s safer to let some secrets stay buried.
In a swiftly-moving novel as relentless and compelling as its hero, Michael Connelly shows once again why Harry Bosch is “one of the most popular and enduring figures in American crime fiction” (Chicago Tribune).
Review –
I love the character of Harry Bosch and I loved this installment in the series but I’m afraid of what’s going to happen to Harry in the next one because his time with the LAPD is nearing the end. He is in the DROP program, that is the Deferred Retirement Option Plan, and will be forced to retire in less than a year. Police work is all he knows and loves. I hope the author, Michael Connelly, has great plans for my favorite character.
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Switchblade by Michael Connelly

18360158Product Description:

Published: January 14, 2014

LAPD Detective Harry Bosch seeks justice for the forgotten in this original
short story from #1 New York Times bestselling author Michael
Connelly

An anonymous tip puts Bosch on a case that has remained
unsolved for decades, the vicious stabbing of a teenage boy whose body was found
in an abandoned Old Hollywood restaurant.

Cold cases are often the
toughest: With no body, no murder scene, and no fingerprints, Bosch nevertheless
gets lucky when DNA evidence from the murder weapon points to a known killer.
But the DA insists that science alone is not enough – he needs the case to be
bulletproof before he’ll take it to court.

Determined to speak for those
who can no longer speak for themselves, Bosch has one chance to wrench a
confession out of a cold-blooded killer, or risk letting him walk free for
good.

In this gripping, never-before-published story by “master of the
crime thriller” (Huffington Post) Michael Connelly, Detective Harry Bosch
quenches his thirst for justice and shows why he is “one of the most popular and
enduring figures in American crime fiction” (Chicago Tribune).

Review –

This is an orginal story by Michael Connelly in E-book and audio form only.  I had the audio version and I was totally let down at the end. I knew it was a short story ( 50 minutes, give or take) but I at least thought that it would END but it left me hanging. This makes me think the author is using it as a vehicle to another full length novel and that’s fine but tell the readers if that is the case.  If not, why not add ten more minutes to the story and give it a final ending?

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The Concrete Blonde(Harry Bosch Series #3) by Michael Connelly

49350Product Despcription:

Published: 1994     Series: Harry Bosch

They called him the Dollmaker…

The serial killer who stalked Los Angeles and left a grisly calling card on the faces of his female victims.  With a single faultless shot, Detective Harry Bosch thought he had ended the city’s nightmare.

Now, the dead man’s widow is suing Harry and the LAPD for killing the wrong man — an accusation that rings terrifyingly true when a new victim is discovered with the Dollmaker’s macabre signature.

Now, for the second time, Harry must hunt down a death-dealer who is very much alive, before he strikes again.  It’s a blood-tracked quest that will take Harry from the hard edges of the L.A. night to the last place he ever wanted to go — the darkness of his own heart.

With The Concrete Blonde, Edgar Award-winning author Michael Connelly has hit a whole new level in his career, creating a breathtaking thriller that thrusts you into a blistering courtroom battle — and a desperate search for a sadistic killer.

Review –

It’s hard to believe that this was just the third in the series because I’ve read so many of them (not in order as you can see) and this one seems like it should further down in the list.

I had the audio version of the book and the reader was Dick Hill and he did a superb job.  If you follow this blog or are familiar with my pet peeves, you will know how I believe a reader (narrator) can make or break a book.  Dick Hill is one who has a natural knack for audiobook work and makes everything I have listened to with him as reader a pleasant experience.

There is a surprise twist near the end that I did not see coming and it was great and I count this as one of my favorite Harry Bosch books.

You really should give it a try.

 

 

 

 

 

The Black Box (Harry Bosch #18) by Michael Connelly

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Book Description

Publication Date:November 26, 2012
In a case that spans 20 years, Harry Bosch links the bullet from a recent crime to a file from 1992, the killing of a young female photographer during the L.A. riots. Harry originally investigated the murder, but it was then handed off to the Riot Crimes Task Force and never solved.
Now Bosch’s ballistics match indicates that her death was not random violence, but something more personal, and connected to a deeper intrigue. Like an investigator combing through the wreckage after a plane crash, Bosch searches for the “black box,” the one piece of evidence that will pull the case together.
Riveting and relentlessly paced, THE BLACK BOX leads Harry Bosch, “one of the greats of crime fiction” (New York Daily News), into one of his most fraught and perilous cases.
Review –
The local library had the audio version of this book so I checked it out and I loved it.  It has  everything a Michael Connelly Harry Bosch Mystery should have : a complex story line spanning decades, a murder, a cold case,tension within the division and Harry, of course, who is like a dog with a bone that he’s not willing to give up.  The only negative thing I have doesn’t relate to the storyline at all, it has to do with the narrator.  He, and I won’t name names, but he was BAD.  All of the characters sounded the same. I will not listen to another book by this reader, that’s for sure.   I love Harry Bosch and I’ll anxiously be waiting for the next one.
Review –

Trunk Music(Harry Bosch #5) by Michael Connelly

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Book Description

Publication Date: September 1, 2008
Back on the job after an involuntary leave of absence, LAPD homicide detective Harry Bosch is ready for a challenge. But his first case is a little more than he bargained for.
It starts with the body of a Hollywood producer in the trunk of a Rolls-Royce, shot twice in the head at close range – what looks like “trunk music,” a Mafia hit. But the LAPD’s organized crime unit is curiously uninterested, and when Harry follows a trail of gambling debts to Las Vegas, the case suddenly becomes more complex – and much more personal.A rekindled romance with an old girlfriend opens new perspectives on the murder, and he begins to glimpse a shocking triangle of corruption and collusion. Yanked off the case, Harry himself is soon the one being investigated. But only a bullet can stop Harry when he’s searching for the truth . . .

Review –
I never get tired of a good Harry Bosch and as you can tell I don’t care in which order I read  the series.  This one is number 5 in the Harry Bosch Series and in  a few days I will listen to the latest, which is number 18. It’s makes no difference to me because Harry is always Harry.
 
If you’ve never read or listened to a Harry Bosch book(and I can’t imagine that) you really need to pick one up the next time you’re at your local library or your favorite bookstore or online store.  You won’t be sorry.

The Narrows by Michael Connelly

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Book Description

Publication Date: October 2, 2006 | Series: Harry Bosch #10

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

There’s a gravitas to the mystery/thrillers of Michael Connelly, a bedrock commitment to the value of human life and the need for law enforcement pros to defend that value, that sets his work apart and above that of many of his contemporaries. That gravitas is in full force in Connelly’s newest, and as nearly always in the work of this talented writer, it supports a dynamite plot, fully flowered characters and a meticulous attention to the details of investigative procedure.There are also some nifty hooks to this new Connelly: it features his most popular series character, retired L.A. homicide cop Harry Bosch, but it’s also a sequel to his first stand-alone, The Poet (1996), and is only his second novel (along with The Poet) to be written in both first and third person. The first-person sections are narrated by Bosch, who agrees as a favor to the widow to investigate the death of Bosch’s erstwhile colleague and friend Terry McCaleb (of Blood Work and A Darkness More Than Night). Bosch’s digging brings him into contact with Rachel Walling, the FBI agent heroine of The Poet, and the third-person narrative concerns mostly her. Though generally presumed dead, the Poet—the serial killer who was a highly placed Fed and Walling’s mentor—is alive and killing anew, with, we soon learn, McCaleb among his victims and his sights now set on Walling. The story shuttles between Bosch’s California and the Nevada desert, where the Poet has buried his victims to lure Walling. The suspense is steady throughout but, until a breathtaking climactic chase, arises more from Bosch and Walling’s patient and inspired following of clues and dealing with bureaucratic obstacles than from slash-and-dash: an unusually intelligent approach to generating thrills. Connelly is a master and this novel is yet another of his masterpieces.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. –This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
also

Book Description

FBI agent Rachel Walling finally gets the call she’s dreaded for years, the one that tells her the Poet has surfaced. She has never forgotten the serial killer who wove lines of poetry in his hideous crimes–and apparently he has not forgotten her. Former LAPD detective Harry Bosch gets a call, too–from the widow of an old friend. Her husband’s death seems natural, but his ties to the hunt for the Poet make Bosch dig deep. Arriving at a derelict spot in the California desert where the feds are unearthing bodies, Bosch joins forces with Rachel. Now the two are at odds with the FBI…and squarely in the path of the Poet, who will lead them on a wicked ride out of the heat, through the narrows of evil, and into a darkness all his own…
Review –
While in Kansas earlier this year, I mentioned to my sister-in-law that I had just finished reading The Poet and  she  said she had the  follow-up book, The Narrows, and would I like to read it. Of course I said yes. And so I brought it home, read it and found that the author had neatly pulled together all the loose ends and ended the career of the serial killer, The Poet. The next time I visit my sister-in-law I will return her book because she keeps all her Michael Connelly books safely stored on her book shelf. She feels about Michael Connelly books  the same way I feel about my Stephen King books. They are treasures.

The Last Coyote(Harry Bosch Series #4) by Michael Connelly

Book Description

Publication Date:April 29, 2003
Harry Bosch’s life is on the edge. His earthquake-damaged home has been condemned. His girlfriend has left him. He’s drinking too much. And after attacking his commanding officer, he’s even had to turn in his L.A.P.D. detective’s badge. Now, suspended indefinitely pending a psychiatric evaluation, he’s spending his time investigating an unsolved crime from 1961: the brutal slaying of a prostitute who happened to be his own mother.
Even after three decades, Harry’s questions generate heat among L.A.’s top politicos. And as the truth begins to emerge, it becomes more and more apparent that someone wants to keep it buried. Someone very powerful…very cunning…and very deadly.
Review –
I love the Harry Bosch Series  by Michael Connelly but haven’t read them in order(I do that a lot) but this one has been my favorite so far.  Poor Harry doesn’t have a lot of luck and what he does have is usually bad but that never deters him from doing what’s right.  We find that’s the way it’s been with him since his mother was murdered and he had to go to a “home” and while he has some time off (not of his choosing) he investigates the  murder of his mother which has gone unsolved for 30 years.  Someone doesn’t want it solved but Harry persists. 
If you love a good “who-done-it” try this one and you won’t be able to put it down.