Series: Harry Bosch #1, Harry Bosch Universe #1
Published by Grand Central Publishing on August 28, 2012
Source: Library, Audible
Narrator: Dick Hill
Length: 13 hours, 49 minutes
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For LAPD homicide cop Harry Bosch -- hero, maverick, nighthawk -- the body in the drainpipe at Mulholland Dam is more than another anonymous statistic. This one is personal.
The dead man, Billy Meadows, was a fellow Vietnam "tunnel rat" who fought side by side with him in a nightmare underground war that brought them to the depths of hell. Now, Bosch is about to relive the horror of Nam. From a dangerous maze of blind alleys to a daring criminal heist beneath the city to the tortuous link that must be uncovered, his survival instincts will once again be tested to their limit.
Joining with an enigmatic and seductive female FBI agent, pitted against enemies inside his own department, Bosch must make the agonizing choice between justice and vengeance, as he tracks down a killer whose true face will shock him.
Starting a huge series like this one can be such an intimidating thing – the Harry Bosch Universe is so long! That’s both a great thing and an overwhelming thing because there are tons of books to catch up on, and I want to read them in order. So I read The Black Echo by Michael Connelly and fell hard for Harry Bosch in terms of his detective work and his character. I enjoyed every word, every scene. (It’s scary to rate a first-in-a-series book a full 5-star rating when the series is this long – but I loved reading this book so much, and I’ve not been able to stop thinking about this story and the character since I stopped it, which is a huge indicator to me in terms of rating.)
I love Harry Bosch so much. He’s exactly the type of detective that I want to read: he has baggage and issues that carry over into his job, which create these perfect blurry areas, which create tension in both his work and private life. Basically, his job affects his life and his life affects his job. Sometimes Harry makes decisions that aren’t always right in terms of the rules, but Harry always does what he thinks is the right thing.
So in The Black Echo, which is the the first Bosch book, Harry is called to investigate the case of a man found murdered in a tunnel in a sketchy part of L.A. Tunnels aren’t Harry’s favorite thing (this goes back to the demons he carries from his time spent in Vietnam). When he gets to the crime scene, Harry realizes that he recognizes the victim. Harry is able to connect this case to another one or two current cases that appear to be smaller. As Harry works to prove the connections, all hell breaks loose and things get very tense and dangerous for everyone involved, including the officers that are investigating the case.
It’s a bit of a long book and there were times when I wondered how on earth everything would come together, but things certainly did by the end. In a big way. I’m glad I was patient.
Some background on Harry: His dad wasn’t around when he was a kid. His mother was murdered (another bit of baggage he carries around) and she was a prostitute. He was a product of “the system” as he was in and out of foster homes until he enlisted in the army. He went to Vietnam. Now, he works with the LAPD and is well-known within the force for his methods and his success in solving cases. Also, he isn’t liked by everyone at work, which causes him problems.
One of the best things about Harry is that he has a bit of a bleeding heart for the victims (and sometimes even the criminals) that can’t really speak for themselves.
I devoured The Black Echo by Michael Connelly. Toward the end, there some huge twists in the story where I literally had to put my book down, get up, and just walk off the shock. I was totally caught off guard and I FELT THINGS. Clearly I’m already emotionally attached to some of these characters after only one book, which makes me excited to dig into this series.
I wasn’t very far into the book when I realized that I would have to put the book down to do life things, like drive and cook and be an adult. I couldn’t stop with this story, I COULD NOT STOP. So I bought the audiobook from Audible and it has been one of my favorite purchases to date. Dick Hill narrates this story so perfectly that I thought my heart would literally stop beating in certain parts of the book, like when it became particularly exciting or when there were scenes of action, or when Harry had flashbacks to when he was in the tunnels in Vietnam, or when those huge twists were revealed (Lord help me), or basically the entire ending.
I bought the audiobook for Harry Bosch #2 (The Black Ice) right away. I’m totally planning on listening and reading this entire series, as long as the narration stays on point.
Title: The Black Echo by Michael Connelly
Series: Harry Bosch #1
Narrated by: Dick Hill
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Length: 13 hours, 49 minutes, Unabridged