Published by Little, Brown and Company on April 1, 2003
Source: Borrowed: ebook
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.
This book was grim. It looks at a post 9/11 world and how many will just make excuses in the name of keeping our country safe. It also shows how trying to do the right thing could leave you in a hole in the ground dead.
Now that Bosch is no longer with the LAPD (read “City of Bones”) he is investigating a cold case that has haunted him for years. A young woman working on a film set was found dead and half naked on her front steps. It seems that her death may be linked to a possible robbery of $2 million dollars days later on the film-set that she worked. Though Harry is looking up this case for his own reasons, he is asked to also follow up by a former LAPD detective who is now looking a long life paralyzed from the neck down. Apparently he has a lot of regrets, and this case is one thing he wants tied up.
We get some reappearances of friends and foes alike in this one. We have Kiz warning Harry off and not being that friendly towards him after he leaves her high and dry to retire. J. Edgar still seems in Bosch’s corner, but per usual is not going to be dragged down with him. FBI agent, Roy Lindell has a personal connection to the case, and I wish that Connelly would just spin that character off already. We get a FBI agent who I definitely think is going to hold a grudge against Bosch, so it will be interesting to see if he pops up again in other books.
We also get Harry connecting again with his ex-wife, Eleanor Wish. Can I also call BS on that whole sub-plot. Seriously though, I wanted to whack Eleanor on her nose with a paper. I hate this trope (no spoilers) in romance novels, and I loathed it here. I won’t get into it, but I maybe booed out loud for a straight minute.
With the LAPD, the FBI, and a rogue U.S. government unit out to get him, you have to wonder how the heck Harry is getting out of this one with intact. We really do have Harry on his own, with no badge or warrants on his own in this one. And can I say that the guy just kept making stupid choice after stupid choice. I definitely buckled up and went along for the ride in this one.
The writing in this one is typical Connelly. He has finessed Bosch’s voice that this felt like drinking a nice crisp white wine to me after the last book. Can I say, I really don’t think that all authors can juggle multiple POVs in one book. I think Connelly shines when he writes with just Bosch’s POV so I plan on passing on anymore books in this series that he does this with in the future. It just worked my nerves too much.
The flow was pitch perfect. When we finally have Harry realizing how the two cases are linked and how a woman that Lindell is interested in finding is also connected your mouth may hang open. I couldn’t believe it. This was done very well and I have to say, I love being surprised and not realizing who the bad guy(s) are until the very end.
The book shifts back and forth between LA and Las Vegas. However, most of Las Vegas occurs in fits and starts. Due to Harry trying to keep the FBI off his back, he just lays trails out for him to follow which has him involving Eleanor again.
You have to wonder at the end of this one, where does this leave Bosch. He obviously still has a drive to solve cases even though he has left the LAPD. But with the fallout from this case, you have to think to yourself that Bosch would be better off just straight up retiring.