Posts Tagged ‘michael connelly’

The Poet by Michael Connelly

The Poet Reviewed by Allen Hott

If you have never read this book, get it and read it. Without a doubt this may have been Michael Connelly at his best (and his best is not reached by many writers in today’s writing world). The story that he started with The Poet transcended into several more of his books but the original really put it all into motion.

Jack McEvoy is a crime reporter who works for the Rocky Mountain News but he always has visions of more. Either a similar job with one of the bigger newspapers in L.A., New York, or Chicago or else to someday finish the book he has written. If he could get one book published then he is certain he could move up in his journalistic field of endeavor.

However the immediate future is extremely clouded. Two detectives from the Denver Police Department have just informed him that Sean, his brother, is dead. Jack and Sean, though twins, are not overly close. Not at this time anyway. Throughout their lives they have been in and out of the closeness thing. However Jack is still shocked and he begins to look into how and why Sean died.

All things point to suicide, even to the leaving behind of a few poetic lines as a suicide note. But to Jack it just doesn’t ring true so he begins to go deeper and deeper into the whole death thing. Read the rest of this entry »

The Drop by Michael Connelly (Review #2)

The Drop Reviewed by Allen Hott

For those of us who are Michael Connelly/Harry Bosch fans The Drop comes as bit of a shock. In the vernacular of the LAPD the DROP means Deferred Retirement Option Plan. And in the case of Harry Bosch, Connelly’s favorite detective, DROP means the end of his career. Needless to say Bosch is not at all in favor of the DROP in his case. But since he is put on it and because of certain circumstances has only 39 months left in his career instead of the 60 months that are generally given. He retired once before and he was not able to live with it and now he is not looking forward to it. He decides that he will go out with a bang and work as many cases as they will give to him.

The morning after he is given the news of the DROP situation he is given two new cases to work. The first one is based on DNA being matched from a 1989 rape and murder to a recently convicted twenty-nine year old rapist. Sounds like a slam dunk until Harry realizes if the accused is 29 today he would have been only 8 at the time of the rape. Somewhere there is a problem. Either with the work out of the Crime Lab that did the analysis of the DNA or something else. Harry has to find out the real story behind this one. Read the rest of this entry »

The Fifth Witness by Michael Connelly

The Fifth Witness Reviewed by Allen Hott

Yep, the recession hurt everyone. And that includes Mickey Haller, the criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles. So much so did the recession hurt that Haller began chasing down wrongful foreclosures. At least in his mind and in his methodology Haller felt that many foreclosures were definitely illegal. With that in mind he began defending many of these folks so that they could keep their homes at least for a spell while either they earned more to be able to make their payments or the bank figured out some other way to fight Haller’s methods.

Strangely enough one of his foreclosure clients quickly became one of his criminal defense clients when the lady was accused of murder. Lisa Trammel, the client, was arrested rather quickly when one of the top men at the bank who foreclosed upon her was shot and killed in the bank’s parking garage.

Trammel had built quite a reputation for herself somewhat similar to the Occupy “Whatever” folks have done. In her case she built a tremendous following by picketing outside the bank, appearing on every type of media broadcast that she was able to, and she even had put together a website extolling the good things about the poor people that the bad banks were foreclosing upon. Lisa had been a high school teacher and her husband was a BMW salesman. However when their loan (which had been sold back and forth several times by banks and financial wizards) ballooned and then went into default her husband left her and headed to Mexico. Read the rest of this entry »

Blood Work by Michael Connelly

Blood WorkReviewed by Allen Hott

This was the first in a short series about Terry McCaleb, a forced-into-retirement former FBI agent. The reason for the forcing was the fact that McCaleb had a heart transplant and was thus put into the “physically unable to perform” category by the department. However his physical condition did not change his thinking about his profession and try as he might to stay out of the grind it didn’t take long before he was drawn back into it.

And as a good mystery writer would do, Michael Connelly sets up the perfect circumstance to pull McCaleb back into action.

A lady comes to McCaleb’s boat (which he is rebuilding for his new life) and very quickly convinces him that she needs him. The lady, Graciela Rivers, had just recently read an article in the newspaper about McCaleb, his background, and his transplant. Graciela’s sister was the one whose donated heart gave McCaleb a second chance at life! And now Graciela wants McCaleb to find her sister’s killer.

Against his own better judgment and definitely against the advices of his heart doctor, McCaleb decides to at least check with the L.A. Police to see what if anything they have found out about the case. He finds that in essence they have done very little and appear to be continuing on that path. The lead detective on the case is very antagonistic toward McCabe and basically tells to keep his nose out of their case. Read the rest of this entry »

The Reversal by Michael Connelly (Review #2)

The Reversal Reviewed by Allen Hott

This guy is good. Every book by Connelly is a best seller but I really believe that The Reversal may be the best of the best. He uses some of his usual characters but in a slightly different manner and that little subtlety makes for a really great story.

Those of you familiar with The Lincoln Lawyer know of Mickey Haller, a defense attorney, who basically uses the Lincoln that he drives as his office. Seems as though he likes to be able to move quickly in response to his clients. Most of which are folks needing help in defending themselves against legal charges, quite often murder charges actually.

Strangely enough in this story Haller has been approached by the District Attorney to work as a prosecuting attorney. The reason being is that the case involves a man being released from prison after serving 24 years for the murder of a young girl. The DA wants to immediately recharge the man because he believes that the courts were wrong in throwing out his murder charge. Not only does he want the man back in prison but he also, along with the local and state authorities, does not want to have to face a suit by the defendant for an old false arrest if the defendant’s lawyer can prove that was the case.

Haller reluctantly agrees to work as a prosecutor but only if the DA will reinstate Haller’s ex-wife (Maggie McPherson) in the main LA office from which she was removed. And also Haller tells the DA that he (Haller) will have full charge of the case as it proceeds. There is to be no interference from the DA or any of his staff. The DA reluctantly agrees because he does feel that Haller is possibly the only one outside of his office who can do this case and get the right results. Read the rest of this entry »

Void Moon by Michael Connelly

Void MoonReviewed by Allen Holt

An earlier Connelly novel but still with all of his energy, tautness, great dialogue, and vivid description. All of his work is stay-up-and-read-one-more-chapter! Void Moon is no exception.

From the very first chapter where Cassie Black watches with regret while her lover (and soon to be father of her child) walked off to get on the elevator to the casino’s hotel rooms. She had wanted to do this job as it was to be their last and they were going to pack it up, leave the racket, and move to Tahiti while awaiting the birth of their child. Though she pleaded with him he would not have it any way so off he went.

Little did either of them know that this would be his last job? The plan seemed to be simple. He would go to the tower and rob the mark while he slept.

But sometime not long after leaving Cassie, Max came crashing through the skylight and dropped onto the dice tables. He was dead and she was devastated.

Her life then begins its descent. She is arrested for several crimes that she and Max had committed. While in prison she delivers Max’s daughter who is immediately put up for adoption.

After serving several years she is put on parole and is lucky enough to have it transferred back to California. She is also lucky enough to get a decent job selling high-priced autos at a fancy dealership. However Cassie longs for more. She wants to get enough money to move (hopefully with her daughter whom she has located) and live happily ever after. Read the rest of this entry »

The Drop by Michael Connelly

The DropReviewed by Caryn St. Clair

After a couple of books away from Harry Bosch as the main character, Connelly returns with The Drop, a book where Harry is at his best. Harry and Chou have two cases to investigate and as things seem to be resolved in each case, the cases take unsettling turns. Questions arise that may pop up again down the road.

The Cold Case Unit of the LAPD routinely selects cases at random to be reviewed to see if using the latest DNA testing there are any new leads in the case. Harry Bosch, now a member of this unit, catches a case from 1989. When the evidence is reviewed, there is a hit on the blood that was found at the scene-only the blood belongs to a guy who would have been only eight years old at the time the crime was committed. Before Harry and his partner Chou can really get started working the case, Harry long time nemesis, Councilman Irvin Irving asks that Harry be assigned to investigate the death of the Councilman’s son.

As readers ride along with Harry and is partner, it’s like catching up with old friends. Readers find Harry and his daughter settled into a comfortable routine after the death of Harry’s ex-wife and Maddy’s mother. Harry and his new partner have a not surprisingly unbalanced relationship with Harry wanting only to give orders while not sharing information. Kiz Rider, Harry’s old partner, has moved up the ladder in the police department and while it is sometimes helpful for Harry there is a definite shift in their relationship during this book-a shift leaving Harry feeling the loss. But the best is the return of Irvin Irving. In The Drop, the Councilman and Harry are supposed to be on the same side on this case, but can Harry and the Councilman ever be in agreement? Their relationship also takes an unusual twist by the end of The Drop. Read the rest of this entry »

The Reversal by Michael Connelly

Reviewed by Jud Hanson

The Reversal by Michael ConnellyTwenty-four years ago a young girl was abducted and killed. The alleged perpetrator, Jason Jessup, was sent to prison, all the while claiming his innocence. New DNA evidence has now allowed his conviction to be overturned and face a new trial. Mickey Haller, a well-known defense attorney in L.A., has been asked by the State to prosecute Jessup in this new trial and he reluctantly accepts. Together with his ex-wife as second-chair, Haller must reexamine the evidence and figure out how to present a convincing case to the jury. It won’t be easy, because Jessup has hired one of the city’s most manipulative defense attorneys and he is loaded for bear. With Harry Bosch at his side as an investigator, Haller will have to use all the tricks at his disposal to outthink the defense. Can Haller burrow thru before it’s too late? Read the rest of this entry »

The Scarecrow by Michael Connelly

Reviewed by Allen Hott

scarecrowMichael Connelly, having been a newspaper reporter at one time, uses this book to give the world a look at the sad state of newspapers today. Jack McEvoy, a newspaper reporter for the LA Times, has just received notice of his forthcoming layoff.

As he prepares to leave the office he gets a phone call from an irate reader of one of his last articles. The woman is extremely upset because she feels McEvoy has accused her “grandson” of murder in his piece. He attempts to calm her down by promising to come see her and look further into the matter. Read the rest of this entry »

Nine Dragons by Michael Connelly

Reviewed by Allen Hott

nineDetective Bosch is back and as usual there is action, plots, sub plots, and just very interesting police mystery writing. In case you haven’t read Michael Connelly you need to know that home base for a lot of his stories is Los Angeles. And Harry Bosch is one of his main characters.

Normally Harry has problems with his superiors in the police department but this time he is having problems with his latest partner. Ignacio Ferras. Ferras was wounded on one of his operations in the field and that coupled with the new twins that his wife just recently delivered makes the guy want to stay in office. Harry has problems with that approach. Harry is a street cop. Harry vows to do something about the situation and little does he know that by the end of the book something will be done!

However Harry gets up to his elbows in other problems when he begins investigating the shooting death of a liquor storeowner in south L.A. Mush of the area is inhabited by immigrants from the Far East and this dead gentleman is no exception. Harry happens to have known the store and its owner from a previous problem. He feels indebted to the dead man and his family to find out who did the killing and why. Read the rest of this entry »