23) The Wrong Side of Goodbye by Michael Connelly
Another week, another long-running series of crime novels. I’ve lost count of how many Michael Connelly novels I’ve read, featuring either Harry Bosch or Mickey Haller…but Wikipedia says it would be around 23. Connelly’s a hugely reliable writer, with a great ear for dialogue, believable plots and, particularly after 23+ novels, characters with real depth. Opening the pages of a new Harry Bosch novel is, for me, the reading equivalent of sliding into a pair of slippers in front of a fire: you can relax as you are in safe hands.
In this one, Bosch is taken on to find the heir of a billionaire – a story which is woven in with a cold case he’s investigating about a set of serial attacks. It’s great and colourful stuff, with the narrative ranging from Vietnam to art collectives, from private security to metal detectors…and the pace doesn’t drop for a moment. I enjoyed how Bosch is noticeably ageing (there’s a nice bit about him running up a hill and suffering afterwards) and increasingly relies on others to do the heavy lifting (actually and metaphorically).
I’m not sure this quite has the freshness, inevitably, of some of the earlier novels (The Poet and the Lincoln Lawyer spring to mind), but it’s entertaining fare – and Connelly is a master at designing and structuring a story to inform, hold the attention and grip to the very end. If you haven’t started reading his books, start anywhere and you won’t go far wrong.
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