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Books: Harry Bosch Detective Series by Michael Connelly

A good book has no ending. ~R.D. Cumming

Ever since reading my first Harry Bosch novel, The Last Coyote, I have become a fan of the detective series. To date, I have read four of the eighteen novels with three of them consumed in the past ten days. The books tend to be faced paced, page turners that keep me captivated for hours on end to the exclusion of all other activities. In some respects, I curse the person that introduced me to the series because it has consumed virtually all my reading time at the expense of the many other books I have on my iPad.

It has been many years since a series of books has captured my attention the way this series has consumed me. As a kid, there was the Hardy Boys series. As an adult there was anything written by Tony Hillerman and the first five of the ten book Jason Bourne series. I was originally turned on to the Bourne book series by my brother who said the written version of the stories were much better than the movies. I would have to agree. Knocking off Marie in the second movie did not do justice to the importance of her character in the novels.

One of things I enjoy about reading a series of novels is watching the character progress over time, seeing how the characters life grows (or stagnates) over a time period much wider than the days/weeks captured in the pages of a novel. This is, for me, one of the endearing aspects of the fictional Jim Chee / Joe Leaphorn characters portrayed in many of the Tony Hillerman novels. With Tony’s novels, I was given a peak into the evolving lives of the characters as they experienced love and loss and the effects of age. I looked forward to each novel Tony wrote and hurried off to the book store to buy the hard cover versions as soon as they hit the shelf for as much as I enjoyed the stories on their own, I was also eager to see the next events unfold in the lives of my fictional friends.

While reading the Harry Bosch novels, I again found myself both enjoying the stories and watching the progression of Harry’s life, how he was forced to deal with the characters in the police department that repeatedly attempted to undercut his mission to solve murders, the progression of his partners and the occasional return of someone from earlier novels.

After reading Trunk Music (Novel #5), The Closers (#11), and Echo Park (#12) and encountering characters whose introduction referenced past events, I felt like I was missing something, missing the foundation that would allow me to better understand the main and peripheral characters along with the incidents that helped form Harry into the person he become in the latter novels. What better way to do this than to circle back to the first Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch novel, The Black Echo.

In The Black Echo, I again encountered Eleanor Wish, a character I previously met in Trunk Music, and discovered how Harry and Eleanor met and the incident that caused her to spend time in jail as was referenced to in Trunk Music. For me, this was good knowledge and, looking back, puts my appreciation of the tandem in a different light, a more exposing light than I had when first read about them.

As much as I would love to start the next novel, The Black Ice, I have to put the reading on hold. I leave for a dream trip to Turkey on Sunday and there are many things I must do prior to departing. If I crack the novel (sounds strange for a Kindle book), I will likely not get everything complete before leaving on that jet plane.


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