The Wrong Side of Goodbye

by Michael Connelly

Paperback, 2017

Call number




Grand Central Publishing (2017), Edition: Reprint, 448 pages


Detective Harry Bosch must track down someone who may never have existed in the new thriller from #1 New York Times bestselling author Michael Connelly. Harry Bosch is California's newest private investigator. He doesn't advertise, he doesn't have an office, and he's picky about who he works for, but it doesn't matter. His chops from thirty years with the LAPD speak for themselves. Soon one of Southern California's biggest moguls comes calling. The reclusive billionaire is nearing the end of his life and is haunted by one regret. When he was young, he had a relationship with a Mexican girl, his great love. But soon after becoming pregnant, she disappeared. Did she have the baby? And if so, what happened to it? Desperate to know whether he has an heir, the dying magnate hires Bosch, the only person he can trust. With such a vast fortune at stake, Harry realizes that his mission could be risky not only for himself but for the one he's seeking. But as he begins to uncover the haunting story--and finds uncanny links to his own past--he knows he cannot rest until he finds the truth. At the same time, unable to leave cop work behind completely, he volunteers as an investigator for a tiny cash-strapped police department and finds himself tracking a serial rapist who is one of the most baffling and dangerous foes he has ever faced. Swift, unpredictable, and thrilling, The Wrong Side of Goodbye shows that Michael Connelly "continues to amaze with his consistent skill and sizzle" (Cleveland Plain Dealer).… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member phoenixcomet
Harry Bosch is back, this time as a PI in CA. Hired by dying billionaire Whitney Vance to discover if he has an heir, Harry embarks on a mission. What really did happen all those years ago and what are the ramifications of finding an heir? Entwined with a serial rapist case, this Connelly novel is a fast, fun read.
LibraryThing member howzzit
One of my favorite authors and characters. Book is well plotted. Writing style is not as good as past quality.

TV series is a disappointment. It needs better casting for the lead character: Harry Bosch.
LibraryThing member RowingRabbit
4.5 stars

When you read a series that has been running as long as this one, it’s inevitable you’ll enjoy some more than others. This one is a keeper.

Harry Bosch is “retired”. After being shoved out of the LAPD, he got a P.I. license & also volunteers at the tiny, cash strapped San Fernando police department. Now he has 2 cases that prevent him from checking up on daughter Maddy as much as he’d like.

Whitney Vance is an elderly billionaire whose days are numbered. When he was 18, he fell in love with a Mexican girl who became pregnant. His elitist father kiboshed the relationship & he never saw her again. As he nears the end of his life with no family, Vance begins to wonder what became of the young woman & if he might have an heir. What he needs is a good P.I.

In San Fernando, Harry & his colleagues have been searching for a serial rapist. His crimes are unspeakable & there’s no doubt he will strike again . Despite some friction with his captain, Harry gives in to his tendency to colour outside the lines as he races to identify their man. But then another woman is snatched & this time it’s personal.

I could blather on (and probably will). What you need to know is this is a great read. My ultimate compliment? I read it in a day, growling at anyone who invaded my space. Connelly is a master of pacing & I found myself chanting “just one more page, just one more page” until I hit the back cover. The dialogue is lean & characters so well developed that you feel as if you’re in the room with them as events unfold. Both story lines are compelling with more than a few twists to keep you on your toes. But it’s Harry’s search for Vance’s heir that packs an emotional punch. It resonates with Harry for personal reasons & reminds us all of the prejudices that were common in the 1950’s. And when the meaning of the title is revealed, it’s an especially poignant moment.

Enough. Just get it & prepare to do some growling of your own.
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LibraryThing member ecw0647
I couldn’t wait to get my hands (ears) on the latest Bosch audiobook (again perfectly read by Titus Welliver.) I love the confluence of Haller and Bosch and this book is a perfect vehicle for the half-brother symbiosis.

Bosch is hired in great secrecy by a billionaire to find if he has an heir from a liaison many decades before. The stakes are enormous, especially after Bosch gets a holographic will in the mail shortly after the man’s death that names him executor and charges him with continuing his search for the heir. He, of course, calls in Haller and together they pursue the heir.A congruent investigation involves a serial rapist that’s also a good story showing off Bosch’s investigative talents.

One of Connelly’s best.
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LibraryThing member Kathy89
I love Harry Bosch and this is a great book in the series. Harry is now retired and working part-time for the San Fernando police and doing private investigations on the side. His police work has him working on the “screen rapist” but his P.I. work has him looking for an unknown heir of a dying mega-wealthy industrialist. As the case progresses he enlists the help of his half-brother, the Lincoln Lawyer and kind of ignores his police work causing a serious situation for his assigned partner.… (more)
LibraryThing member cburnett5
Michael Connelly manages a feat few authors can pull off successfully. The Wrong Side of Goodbye is the 21st book in the Harry Bosch series, and each installment further develops the Bosch character while involving him in yet another fascinating and unique crime that he has to solve. I just absolutely love this series, and The Wrong Side of Goodbye is fantastic.

Bosch is now working part-time (and uncompensated) as an investigator for the tiny San Fernando Police Department. He is working his way through the department’s cold case files and is currently focused on solving the Screen Cutter rapes. As he gets close to solving the case, one of his coworkers disappears. Meanwhile, Harry has also been hired by a wealthy tycoon to determine if the old man has any heirs. Due to his wealth, there are a number of people who don’t want any potential heirs located. Between the two cases, Bosch has his hands full.

Michael Connelly writes a fabulous mystery time and time again. One of my favorite parts of his stories is that he includes a number of interesting stories about the L.A. area and the other locales Harry visits. This time around a portion of the story takes place in Vietnam, and Connelly includes the show performed there in December 1969 by Bob Hope, Connie Stevens, Neil Armstrong, and a jazz saxophonist named Quentin McKinzie. I was not familiar with the details regarding this event and truly enjoyed learning about it. I also loved the way he incorporated Harry into a subsequent portion of that story. I was fascinated too to learn that tip lines create more work for police officers frequently because so many people call in trying to settle scores or payback an enemy. Who would do that?!

I highly, highly recommend this book and the entire series. Anyone who reads this book is in for a wonderful treat.
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LibraryThing member jfe16
Harry Bosch, California’s newest private investigator, has no office, doesn’t advertise, and is choosy about his clients. A reclusive billionaire, nearing the end of his life, asks Harry to find someone who may not exist.
With a vast fortune at stake, Harry sets out on his mission, one that he will pursue until he finds the truth.

While conducting his investigation, Harry is also working gratis for a small police department where he finds himself tracking a serial rapist, one of the most dangerous foes he’s ever faced.

With its unexpected twists and turns and a thrilling plot that twist and turns as it creates a tension-filled tale, this is a story readers won’t be able to set aside until the final unexpected reveal.

Highly recommended.
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LibraryThing member cjordan916
Soon one of Southern California's biggest moguls comes calling. The reclusive billionaire is nearing the end of his life and is haunted by one regret. When he was young, he had a relationship with a Mexican girl, his great love. But soon after becoming pregnant, she disappeared. Did she have the baby? And if so, what happened to it?… (more)
LibraryThing member velopunk
Another great Harry Bosch novel. Harry is retired from the LAPD and working as a reserve officer on the San Fernando PD and doing some PI work on the side. With the SFPD Harry is the lead officer on the screen cutter rapist case. As a private investigator he has been retained by a reclusive aviation billionaire to find an heir from a teenage romance over 50 years ago.… (more)
LibraryThing member antao
The Lure of Good Crime Fiction: "The Wrong Side of Goodbye" by Michael Connelly I used to feel that I shouldn't like reading Crime Fiction, like I did in 2014, in what I always remember as my Crime Fiction Year; it was in that year that I sensibly decided that a well written Crime Fiction novel has as much "intrinsic value" as any other book, however much the literary snobs may turn their noses up. Good writing is good writing, whether it's a spy or a SF novel. After 2014 I haven’t read much Crime Fiction. My bad, but as soon as a new Michael Connelly, or Ian Rankin comes out, I’m already moving them to the top of my TBR Pile, like I did with this “The Wrong Side of Goodbye, as I’ll do with “I’ll Rather Be the Devil” by Ian Rankin, coming out on the 1st of November. I love a good Crime Fiction Novel. This is due to my teenage years, when I was reading detective fiction by the bucket-load as if there was no tomorrow (Christie, Sayers, Stout, Allingham, Ambler, Block, P. D. James, Chesterton, Hammett, Simenon, Rendell, Marsh, Innes, Chandler, Dürrenmatt, Westlake, Camilleri, Highsmith, Burke, Thomson, Higgins, Crais, Spillane, Leonard, etc.). And then, in more recent years I discovered Rankin, Connelly, C. J. Samson and Scandinavian Fiction, and a few other stray Crime Fiction writers like Ken Bruen. Scandinavian Crime Fiction is still one of my favourites all round.
If you're into Crime Fiction, read the rest of the review on my blog.
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LibraryThing member infjsarah
I love the Bosch novels and this one is at the top end of quality. There are 2 stories, one where Harry is working as a volunteer police officer (really! and we thought funding was bad in the UK) and the other where he is doing his private detective role. Both plots have twists and turns and it is very enjoyable. Have to be impressed by Connelly's continuous ability to produce great stories.… (more)
LibraryThing member auntmarge64
Sterling suspense, although unnecessarily cluttered by the main character's personal life.

Detective Hieronymus Bosch is back. After being forced to resign from the LAPD and winning a lawsuit against them, he's working as a PI and volunteering his time to a detective squad in a neighboring town. He comes up against interesting cases in both lines of work: a dying billionaire hires him to find out if he ever had any heirs, while he searches for a serial-rapist targeting Latinas.

As usual the action works well, as we look over Harry's shoulder to observe his thought processes. But the diversion into his personal life, as he makes frequent phone calls to meet up with his college-age daughter for a meal, are quite irritating. The don't advance the story at all, and who cares anyway? Still, if you're a fan of the Bosch novels or TV series, this one's for you.
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LibraryThing member thewanderingjew
The Wrong Side of Goodbye, Michael Connelly, author; Titus Welliver, narrator
Detective Bosch returns in this novel to try and locate a serial rapist before he has an opportunity to stage another attack that will injure and traumatize a new victim. He is working for the police department, pro bono, for the chance to get back into detective work. His past battles with the force have followed him and made him a pariah with some who choose to ignore his previous successes in solving crimes and murder investigations in favor of holding a grudge against him for objecting to his wrongful termination and consequent suing of the police department, a suit in which he ultimately emerged the victor.
At the same time, he has been hired as a private investigator, by a terminally ill man of enormous wealth, to discover if he has an unknown heir to his fortune. Against policy, in his private pursuits, he uses the police computers, databases and resources to glean information not available to the general public. When in the one case, a murder is committed, and in the other, a police officer is kidnapped,, the action begins in earnest.
I don’t think this is the author’s best work because most of it was quite predictable. Still , what surprises there were, especially at the end, held my interest. The author presented the novel with a bit of a liberal point of view with characters voicing opinions on our legal system, illegal immigrants, greed and alternate lifestyles throughout the story, as well as giving a nod to the “right” in scenes which promoted life rather than abortion.
The narrator tended to drone a bit, which often made me lose my train of thought. I think he needed to exert a bit more emotion into his reading. That said, his presentation was ungarbled, staightforward and easy to understand.
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LibraryThing member edwardsgt
Harry is back, now working part-time and unpaid for San Fernando PD whilst operating as a private investigator in his spare time. A former LAPD colleague now working for a private security company recruits Harry for a Howard Hughes-like billionnaire recluse to undertake a personal top-secret assignment. As always Harry puts his heart into the assignment but finds himself reliving his time as a tunnel-rat in Vietnam as he investigates one of the players. However his research has to be put to one side as one of his SFPD cold cases suddenly hits a breakthrough and he has to move his focus to that. As always, great characterisation, plotting and real Los Angeles area locations keep you turning the pages.… (more)
LibraryThing member norinrad10
What you say about any novel that Connelly writes? They are alweays solid and he seems to improve with every outing. This time it's a serial rapist and a search for a long lost heir that move the adventure along. As always it's the little details that make these books so realistic. I can't wait for the next one.
LibraryThing member gmmartz
'The Wrong Side of Goodbye' is yet another Michael Connelly mediocrity that's become the norm. In this Bosch novel, Harry ends up working 2 assignments, one as a private investigator on a sort of 'missing heir' job, and the other a serial rapist case through his unpaid, part time position with a small LA county department. They have no connection to one another and no real synergy, so I can only assume 'padding' was the impetus. Why doesn't he put a little more effort into the writing and characters to create separate novels of maybe 250 pages apiece, rather than one that combines 2 bare bones stories for 388?

The plots are OK- both are believable and handled as expected with Bosch's combination of smarts and hard-headedness. I particularly liked the resolution of the rape case and the description of the thought processes running through the mind of a great detective as events are unfolding at jet speed. I felt he telegraphed the conclusion of the 'missing heir' case, but it was still a nice twist.

Overall, the writing was very bland and uninteresting, the dialogue ranged from OK to wooden, and there was little character development throughout. The stories were OK, so all-in-all a decent reading experience.
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LibraryThing member Beamis12
Connelly and Bosch have done it again. Written a novel that kept me turning the pages, a tightly plotted novel filled with the special insights that one my my favorite detectives seems to have been gifted. Now working a part time, unpaid gig with a police department that had to make drastic cuts, he continues on investigating cold cases while being allowed to work on his own side cases for some real money. He becomes embroiled in two separate cases, one a serial rapist, the other a hunt for legitimate issue of an aging billionaire feeling his own mortality is getting closer.

Good police work, and while this is not a stunner, the cases not terribly flashy, Bosch with the occasional help from his brother from another mother, Heller, keeps the story moving. Just a solid, well thought out entry in the Bosch cannon. I always look forward to a new one in this series and I was not disappointed. Another long running series that manages to maintain my interest.

ARC from publisher.
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LibraryThing member runner56
If my favourite English crime author is Ian Rankin then Michael Connelly is surely no 1 for the mantle of America's greatest living crime writer. Even the hardback cover of his latest book "The wrong side of Goodbye" has a certain dark underbelly feeling mixed in with a dash of noir. The crime writing genre is bursting at the seams with talent and wannabe Connelly imitators but nothing really comes close to the man himself and The Wrong Side of Goodbye is yet another brilliant piece of crime fiction. It is quite amazing how Harry Bosch is still as fresh and keen from, when we first met him, in The Black Echo to this his 23rd outing. The fact that Harry was a "tunnel rat" during the Vietnam war means he is now aged mid 60's and yet we as readers truly believe in him and that fact alone must be attributed to his creator, Michael Connelly

Harry has been asked to find a missing heiress by aviation billionaire Whitney Vance. This job will involve him revisiting his past war history as he searches out Vibiana Duarte who became pregnant after a short relationship with Vance and subsequently deserted by him. Before he dies he wants to put things right. Is she still alive? If not where is the child? In addition he is working with the San Fernando police department trying to find the sexual rapist known as the Screen Cutter. Amidst all this drama he still has almost daily contact with his daughter Maddie, now a student, but very close to her ever worried and fearful dad. During the two investigations a mistake by Harry results in a dramatic and almost tragic situation with an unusual outcome.

As always the writing is tight, the characters believable and well-drawn, with an excellent story, never over complicated, always enjoyable. There is certainly much life left in a maturing Harry Bosch and I look forward to his return in what will be his 24th outing.
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LibraryThing member justacatandabook
Harry Bosch is retired from his days as a detective with the LAPD, but certainly not from his days investigating crime. Bosch is working for himself, as a private investigator on a referrals only basis, and he's also a reservist with a small police department with a limited budget in San Fernando Valley. When Bosch gets word that a new client, Whitney Vance, wants to hire him, he can't help but be intrigued. Vance is a billionaire and heir to a fortune via his family's company, Advance Engineering. The aging man wants Bosch to track down a supposed heir: when Vance was in college, he had a fling with a young Mexican woman, and believes she had a child. If so, somewhere out there could be a heir to Vance's vast fortune (besides his eager, greedy board). Vance swears Bosch to secrecy, as no one associated with Advance Engineering and the board would be too keen to hear about someone standing in the way of their potential fortune. Meanwhile, in his work at the police department, Bosch is helping his colleagues track down a serial rapist. The suspect seems to be getting more and more bold; can they stop him before he strikes again?

Picking up a Harry Bosch book is always like coming home again, and this one was no exception. Bosch is a well-loved, nuanced, and wonderful character. He is complex and well-written, and I will forever be saddened when Connelly stops writing about him, or Bosch decides to stop investigating crime. I sincerely love him dearly. This novel is Bosch and Connelly at their best: a well-plotted mystery novel backed by Bosch's backstory and ruminating. Bosch is amusing, stubborn, and familiar, and he's also wonderful at his job.

Connelly does an excellent job of telling the tale with Bosch's two disparate cases (Vance and the Screen Cutter rapist); neither seem to overshadow the other, and you don't get confused with both threads going on simultaneously. Both are interesting cases, and Bosch is torn finding time to devote to each, much as the reader is. The story features appearances from Bosch's daughter and Mickey Haller (Bosch's half-brother, and a key character in the Lincoln Lawyer series), which is always fun, too. I was very intrigued by both of Bosch's cases, and Connelly kept me guessing until the end. I find it amazing that he's managed to keep Bosch so relevant and in the game all this time, but I suppose that's a testament to Bosch's skill (and Connelly's).

Overall, this isn't some amazing beyond words mystery, but it's just so well-done, with its dual cases, and features such a wonderful character, that I really loved it. If you haven't read any of Connelly's books, I highly recommend them. I started at the beginning with the Bosch series and certainly didn't regret it. But you could always start with this one, too. 4.5 stars
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LibraryThing member maneekuhi
I have read a few books in the Harry Bosch series. I recall being blown away by one of the early ones, "The Poet"?, but then being disappointed by a subsequent book or two, and so I didn't stay with the series. Not so long ago I read one where Harry is in the Far East, I think it involved his daughter, enjoyed it a lot and considered going back and reading some of the older books that I had missed - but I never did. There's been a lot of hype about "Wrong Side" (WS) so I thought I'd give it a try. I'm glad I did. A true 4 1/2 star, but I'll round up on Amazon to 5 stars, and be real with my LibraryThing rating.

Harry is retired, but active doing some private eye work and acting as a non-paid volunteer cop for San Fernando, a small community completely surrounded by LA. He is hired by a very wealthy, very old industrial giant to determine if there is a possibility of an only heir, a child which the old man fathered in Viet Nam days. Meanwhile, Harry is also engaged in trying to apprehend an unknown serial rapist who has attacked at least four women over the past few years.

There was a lot I enjoyed very much about this book. The pace was brisk and constant, but never frenetic, so it seemed to be a quick read though it was 388 pages - there were no lulls, and I always looked forward to picking it up again. It was very today, feeling like it was written within the past few days (it's Feb 2017 as I write this); even the dedication to Vin Scully was today's "news". Yet it also had some very well done ties back to the Viet Nam era, without being one of those overdone things that spends too much time in flashbacks - this was just right. Very LA, lot of good local history that was interesting even to me, an East Coast guy. I had never read a Connelly with Mickey Haller, the half bro, and I was surprised to find that I liked him as much as I did. Two good storylines, they interwove very well. Lots of tension at appropriate times, but not saturated with blood and guts, though there's a minimal bit of violence.

I was not crazy about how the heir story ended. I thought it was a bit anti-climactic. I would have done it differently, but how can you argue with a guy who has sold a billion books. But nevertheless, I dinged a half star for that. Yet I recommend this highly, I will read the next Bosch, and I might even go back and read a Haller.....

I bought and read the hardbound version of this novel. Amazon's pricing at the time of my purchase - and remember, this book is still "new" at this time, a current best seller and not an overstock - was higher for the Kindle version than the Hardbound. Outrageous! I will no longer buy ebooks over $9.99 The publisher (and price setter per Amazon) is Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc.
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LibraryThing member pegmcdaniel
I won this novel in a Word of Mouth Contest. Thank you!

This latest novel from Michael Connelly in the PI Harry Bosch crime fiction series is definitely a winner. It's a thriller that held my attention throughout. It's carefully plotted, the characters are well-developed, and you'll even find out a bit about Harry's time in Vietnam.

Harry is involved in two investigations: (1) find an heir for an aging billionaire, and (2) clear up a cold case involving a serial rapist. There are plenty of twists and turns as Harry uses his skills, intelligence, and instincts to solve these cases.

I like that Connelly sets the scenes with Los Angeles and its suburbs so vividly. I always enjoy reading novels set in an area I have visited or lived near and can recognize street names, highways, and other landmarks.
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LibraryThing member brangwinn
This is the first Michael Connelly book I’ve read, and if all are as interesting as this one, I will seek out other books by him. I find few authors who can connect events that have happened in the past with current times. Connelly is one of those who uses the Vietnam experience his detective, Harry Bosch, with a current private investigation. I enjoyed the juxtaposition of his private investigation with the search for a rapist in his current position as an unpaid member of a small city police force, along with his father duties to his daughter in college.… (more)
LibraryThing member Twink
The Wrong Side of Goodbye is the twenty first novel in Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch series.

I wondered where Connelly was going to take Harry once he left the LAPD. But once a cop, always a cop. Harry has joined the small San Fernando PD as a reserve officer. He's been working the case of The Screencutter, a serial rapist working in the area. Harry is also a private investigator now and is called to the home of a reclusive billionaire. At death's doorway, the man wants to know if he has any blood heirs. But there are those just as determined to see that none are found.

Connelly has come up with two great cases, both intriguing and well plotted. We meet a whole new set of characters in the new police department. I would definitely like to see more of this group and this setting. Mickey Haller (The Lincoln Lawyer) makes an appearance as well. I quite enjoy the two characters appearing in each other's cases.

This is the 21st entry, but this series has never lost it's momentum or freshness. Skillful storytelling, great characters, inventive plotting, excellent detective work and so entertaining.

The Wrong Side of Goodbye was a fantastic listen. Narrator Titus Welliver has become the voice of Bosch for me - gruff, growly, tough. His interpretation of the character absolutely matches my mental image. And he also stars in the television series Bosch.
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LibraryThing member Scrabblenut
I always look forward to a new Michael Connolly book and this was no exception. Excellent mystery with lots of twists and turns and a satisfying conclusion to both storylines.
LibraryThing member Carol420
[The Wrong Side of Goodbye] by Michael Connelly
Harry Bosch series Book #21

From The Book:
Harry Bosch is California's newest private investigator. He doesn't advertise, he doesn't have an office, and he's picky about who he works for, but it doesn't matter. His chops from thirty years with the LAPD speak for themselves.

Soon one of Southern California's biggest moguls comes calling. The reclusive billionaire is nearing the end of his life and is haunted by one regret. When he was young, he had a relationship with a Mexican girl, his great love. But soon after becoming pregnant, she disappeared. Did she have the baby? And if so, what happened to it?

Desperate to know whether he has an heir, the dying magnate hires Bosch, the only person he can trust. With such a vast fortune at stake, Harry realizes that his mission could be risky not only for himself but for the one he's seeking. But as he begins to uncover the haunting story--and finds uncanny links to his own past--he knows he cannot rest until he finds the truth.

At the same time, unable to leave cop work behind completely, he volunteers as an investigator for a tiny cash-strapped police department and finds himself tracking a serial rapist who is one of the most baffling and dangerous foes he has ever faced.

My Thoughts:
Back in 1992 I read the first of Michael Connelly's new series about a take-charge, by the book, no holds barred police detective...Harry Bosch. I was hooked after the the last page of that book was turned and I can say that absolutely nothing has changed.

After the book before this one...[The Crossing]...we saw some big changes coming for Harry including his leaving the San Francisco Police Department after throwing his commanding officer through a plate glass window. We as fans thought that perhaps Harry was going to ride off into the sunset. I was really glad to see this book appear to take it's place as #21 and bring Harry back.

Harry is working for a smaller department investigating cold cases as well as doing some private investigating work on his own. The difference is he doesn't get paid for his police work because of a new program that the department is working to allow detectives that aren't quiet ready to throw in the towel to continue to work and feel productive while lending their many years of expertise. At first it seemed the police case and the private case were not going to exist too well in the same story line but as usual Michael Connelly brought both to a glorious conclusion. Mickey Haller...the Lincoln Lawyer from another of Connelly's series and Harry half brother...has a major role in the story also. So what more could Michael Connelly's fan ask for?
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