Another excellent encounter with detective Harry Bosch in his first big case following his return to LAPD after an early retirements and stint as a PI. Again the story revolves around one of Hollywood’s many open-unsolved cases – the disappearance and presumed murder of a young woman – which Harry first investigated 13 years previously; only now it looks like she was one of many victims of a serial killer.
A few familiar faces turn up to help out Harry in his quest to track down the murderer, and the truth – and given that politicians and elections come into the mix too Harry faces even more dirty double dealings (and plot twists and turns) than usual.
Amazon.co.uk link: Echo Park – Michael Connelly
Sod’s law in operation as far as the timing of reading this Harry Bosch novel goes…. I’d already picked up that The Poet tells a key event in Harry’s life and career but I’d not been able to find it at the library, and it turns out that The Narrows is, in effect, a sequel to The Poet. Anyway, The Poet will make interesting reading when I do lay my hands on a copy.
The key players are the serial killer known as The Poet, ex cop private eye Bosch and FBI agent Rachel Walling. As the FBI investigate a mass grave in the Nevada desert, Bosch and Walling are lured, by separate means and with differing motivations, towards the same spot – but the climax takes place back in Harry’s LA heartland.
Our hero, Harry Bosch, has now retired from the LAPD; his years as a detective having made him well versed in the underbelly of Californian life. With time on his hands, and no one to share it with, he carries on sleuthing, looking into cold cases which his (former) fellow officers have no time to pursue. Harry’s unofficial investigation into the murder of a young woman who’d worked in the film industry brings him into contact with a former colleague paralysed in the course of duty, the FBI, weathly film financiers… and although Harry ties up everything at the end, there’s an unexpected twist which left me wondering where things would go next!
Amazon.co.uk tells me that Lost Light is book 9 in the Harry Bosch series, and that book number 2 (next on the library list) is The Black Ice, so that leaves at least seven more installments to track down, starting with The Black Echo. Plus I’d never realised Amazon had these “Series” pages…. very handy!
Amazon.co.uk link: Lost Light – Michael Connelly
Having read all of (now sadly departed) Michael Dibdin’s Aurelio Zen novels, and being up to date with both Sue Grafton’s Kinsey Millhone Alphabet and (to the best of my knowledge – my reading has been a bit hotchpotch here) Patricia Cornwell’s Kay Scarpetta series, I am in need of some fresh crime fiction and a new detective hero/heroine.
I tried The Closers a few months ago but gave up after a few pages as the book needed to go back to the library, but I’d picked this one up for a pound at a S&S charity book sale, and found it much easier to get into. Set in LA, not a million miles from Kinsey Millhone’s Santa Theresa turf, The Black Echo deals with a much darker world – the crimes investigated by the homicide team in the not so whiter than white LAPD.
In this novel, less than perfect Harry Bosch is digging into the drug-related death of a fellow Vietnam veteran and getting caught up in the more complex world of the FBI and sophisticated high value bank vault robberies.
If you like The Wire, then I think you’ll like Harry Bosch.
And having just looked up the Amazon.co.uk link, I see that this is the first Harry Bosch novel. Excellent – no need to try to work out how best to backtrack to the start of the story… I just need to know which one comes next….
Amazon.co.uk link: The Black Echo – Michael Connelly