Harry Bosch has been promoted from the LAPD Open Unsolved Unit to the Homicide Special Unit, but this supposedly greener pasture hasn't brought better sleep. His very first case at his new job involves the murder of a doctor with access to radioactive cesium. The investigation moves to red-alert status when it's discovered that a large quantity of the deadly material disappeared shortly before the killing. With the threat of an imminent terrorist attack hovering in his head, Bosch must not only track down the killers but also sidestep homeland security turf wars in the process. Thrilling with the deep tinge of reality.
Reviewers were somewhat abrupt about perennial bestseller Connelly's 13th Harry Bosch novel: "a quick read, almost half the length of Connelly's previous novels," said one; "a tasty hors d'oeuvre" quipped another. How smart and fortunate for listeners that Hachette Audio has turned to veteran Connelly reader Len Cariou for some added weight. Cariou catches all the strength and sadness behind Bosch's minimal dialogue and is also perfect as Harry's LAPD colleagues, female and male. He is especially good at bringing to frightening life the real villains: the federal investigators, headed by a former Bosch lover, FBI agent Rachel Walling. The Feds are trying to take over the case of a body found on an overlook near Mulholland Drive-a doctor who turns out to have had access to radioactive materials stored at hospitals throughout L.A. All praise to Hachette for getting Cariou to help us through it. The production boasts original music by Frank Morgan. Simultaneous release with the Little, Brown hardcover (Reviews, Apr. 2). (May)Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Even though this book started as a serial—originally appearing in 16 installments in the New York Times Magazine—Connelly has molded it into a crisply written, smooth-flowing and gripping mystery. The hero, Harry Bosch, is an LAPD detective who’s had his share of internal battles with higher-ups, as well as with posturing politicians. The crime scene is the overlook above the Mulholland Dam in Los Angeles. A medical physicist has been executed, and his death may have been the work of terrorists. The victim had access to radioactive cesium, used in treating cancer. The terrorists had seized the physicist’s wife and told him to get as much cesium as possible, if he didn’t want her tortured and killed. He does so, but he—and not his wife—ends up being murdered. (1 Oct 2007)
Series hero detective Harry Bosch, now of LAPD's Homicide Special Squad of the Robbery/Homicide division, is back with a vengeance. Connelly (Echo Park) delivers a masterly piece of contemporary fiction that goes beyond the average police procedural by drawing on the current fears of terrorism and the political ramifications created by attempts to thwart it. A medical physicist is murdered, and the radioactive material he worked with is stolen. Thus begins the search to find the killer and the urgent need to retrieve the materials. Again, the usual departmental and federal politics and the unexpected plot twists combine for a great work. Connelly's novels are quite simply only getting better with age; the banter of the murder investigation is smart and the action taut. This sixth narration of a Bosch mystery by Len Cariou is excellent and brings the characters to life. Highly recommended.
Scott R. DiMarco
In a 12-hour adventure first serialized in weekly installments in the New York Times Magazine, Harry Bosch finally catches a fresh case after years of resurrecting old ones (Echo Park, 2006, etc.), and it's a honey. Before he was shot to death at a scenic overlook on Mulholland Drive, Stanley Kent was a medical physicist who had access to the radioactive cesium used to treat uterine cancer. Because the murder looks like an execution, Bosch and his new partner, Ignacio ("call me Iggy") Ferras of LAPD Homicide Special, are under orders to grab the case from Hollywood Homicide. In a breathtakingly short time, though, it's grabbed from them by Rachel Walling, Bosch's former lover, and her take-no-prisoners FBI partner Jack Brenner. The reason: Shortly before he died, Kent had driven to St. Agatha's Clinic for Women and removed dozens of doses of cesium at the demand of the masked thugs who'd broken into his home, tied up his wife and threatened to rape and kill her. Alicia Kent is still alive, but her husband isn't, and the cesium has vanished. Captain Don Hadley, the well-connected nincompoop in charge of L.A.'s Department of Homeland Security, is convinced the threat of a dirty bomb is linked to anti-American provocateur Ramin Samir; the FBI is more intent on locating a Syrian terrorist who goes by the nickname Moby. But Bosch is convinced the Feds have missed important clues, and soon he's dug up an eyewitness to the crime and found new evidence at the Kent home. Both discoveries send him barreling into a series of jurisdictional battles that almost upstage the terrorist threat. A beautifully stripped-down case that makes up in tension and velocity what it lacks in amplitude. Serializationhasn't hurt Connelly any more than it did Charles Dickens, who's cited at several key points.