Connelly introduces a new character, Detective Renee Ballard. There are Bosch traits in this new one that I enjoy, but some new traits that I also like. Still in all, we have another detective sort of on the outs with leadership, very focused on getting the job done and finding the bad guys, willing to stretch the 'rules' and work outside the box to get it done - more so than Bosch in some ways, and yes, quirky with a muddy past/childhood that plays into decisions from time to time. For a few chapters, I wondered if Connelly was going to pull of the transition of a male writer with a female lead character. I give him B+ on that score - but its a very credible effort for a first try with a new character. The story line(s) was excellent with multiple cases running simultaneously - one big one at the center of things though, that Ballard isn't even supposed to be working on (fun!). One thing about the way the story unfolded though was how Connelly walks the reader through the thinking processes Ballard uses to uncover clues, pondered optional theories and then sorted the out with some fits and starts - I liked that a lot. It wasn't overdone with pages of Ballard running around in her own head, but concise and clear analysis of what leads to what and why and how things fit together. Great ending. Loved the book and highly recommend it. Enjoy.

USAF1969's rating:
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