My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Retired FBI profiler, Terry McCaleb finds himself embroiled in another case when he is approached to review an unsolved murder with disturbingly ritualistic elements. Terry is soon horrified by the realization that his profile points to one suspect – a fellow law enforcement officer and friend – LAPD Detective Harry Bosch.
Series note: This is book #2 in the Terry McCaleb series. It also slots in after book #7 of the Harry Bosch series. Numerous references are made to events in Harry’s life that are covered in his books, and it is, therefore, recommend that the books be read in order.
The plot is comprised of two threads that ultimately intersect, but given the nature of the two storylines, the connections are obvious and predictable from the start.
While the narrative is presented from both Terry and Harry’s POVs, it is primarily a Terry McCaleb story and Harry Bosch is a secondary character. These two men are very different in their investigative methods with Terry being more of a thinker and Harry more of a man of action.
Unfortunately, Terry’s character suffers not only from being in close proximity to Harry, but also from his suspicions. It is disappointing that he so easily accepts the idea of Harry as an evil killer, and that he seems to be forcing the facts to fit his theory rather than following the evidence to its logical conclusion.
Overall, a good mystery and the detail on the life of Hieronymous Bosch and his paintings is very interesting. As with most of Connelly’s books, my main criticism is with the drawn out writing style, which is too focused on the internal musings of the characters and the long winded philosophical descriptions of scenery. Connelly needs to get to the point more quickly because the first 50% of most of his books can be tedious.
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