Dark Sacred Night (Renée Ballard, #2; Harry Bosch, #21; Harry Bosch Universe, #31)by Published 30 Oct 2018
|Dark Sacred Night (Renée Ballard, #2; Harry Bosch, #21; Harry Bosch Universe, #31).pdf|
|Publisher||Little, Brown and Company|
LAPD Detective Renée Ballard teams up with Harry Bosch in the new thriller from #1 NYT bestselling author Michael Connelly.
Renée Ballard is working the night beat again, and returns to Hollywood Station in the early hours only to find a stranger rifling through old file cabinets. The intruder is retired detective Harry Bosch, working a cold case that has gotten under his skin. Ballard kicks him out, but then checks into the case herself and it brings a deep tug of empathy and anger.
Bosch is investigating the death of fifteen-year-old Daisy Clayton, a runaway on the streets of Hollywood who was brutally murdered and her body left in a dumpster like so much trash. Now, Ballard joins forces with Bosch to find out what happened to Daisy and finally bring her killer to justice.
Dark Sacred Night (Renée Ballard, #2; Harry Bosch, #21; Harry Bosch Universe, #31) Reviews
In this 21st book in the 'Harry Bosch' series, Michael Connelly unites the vintage sleuth with his new detective Renee Ballard.....and they turn out to be a good match. The novel provides enough background information to be read as a standalone.
Detective Harry Bosch worked for the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) for over three decades but was always a maverick who bent the rules and eschewed authority. Thus Harry was finally pushed out of the LAPD, and eventually took a job with the small San Fernando Police Department - where he mostly works cold cases.
Titus Welliver as Harry Bosch
Bosch's daughter Maddie attends college in southern California but rarely visits home because Harry has taken in a fiftyish recovering drug addict called Elizabeth Clayton. Elizabeth is still reeling from the unsolved rape/murder of her 15-year-old daughter Sophie nine years ago and Harry - who has a soft heart - is trying to help her keep clean. Harry is also re-opening Sophie's case, hoping to bring her sadistic killer to justice.
LAPD Detective Renee Ballard was on the fast track in the Robbery-Homicide Division until she reported her boss for sexual harassment. The 'Me Too' movement hadn't quite reached the police force - and Renee's traitorous male partner (who saw what happened) didn't back her up - so Renee was reassigned to the night shift. There Renee starts cases that are then handed over to daylight detectives - a situation Renee finds frustrating and unfulfilling.
Renee is still on the outs with some cops, who sometimes give her a hard time or neglect to send back-up when requested, etc. (They should be fired IMO.)
Renee marches to her own drummer. She (sort of) lives with her grandmother Tutu in Ventura, but usually sleeps in a tent on the beach after surfing/paddling in the ocean. Renee's dog Lola stays in 'doggie care' when the detective is at work, where Renee can monitor her on CCTV. Renee sometimes frets about being a bad 'dog mom' but Lola seems to be a happy pooch.....and is a good guard dog for the tent.😊
Renee and Bosch meet when Harry is sneakily looking into his old file cabinets at the LAPD, claiming he was passing the time while waiting for someone.
In reality, Harry is looking for old field interview cards (shake cards), which document informal police contacts during the course of patrol - like intoxicated pedestrians, loiterers, people in parked cars, and so on. Harry thinks these cards might provide information about Sophie's rapist/killer.
Renee, who's adamant about catching sex murderers, signs up to work with Harry and the temporary partners start looking at thousands of shake cards that were put in storage. The cards provide possible clues about Sophie's death, and the detectives follow up when they're not working other cases.
For his part, Harry is investigating the long ago murder of a 'San Fer' gang leader. A reformed thug has provided a tip about the bullets used, and Harry is following it up. Unfortunately, the case springs a leak that has unfortunate consequences.....but gives Renee the opportunity to shine.
On her side, Renee is investigating the theft of valuable Andy Warhol paintings of 'red lips' from the home of a recently deceased woman.....as well as going out on miscellaneous night calls.
As things shake out, a chance observation helps the sleuths solve Daisy's murder, and that's all I can say without spoilers.
Harry shows a dark side in this book, using unorthodox methods of interrogation and a thirst for vengeance. Renee, on the other hand, is a 'by the book' gal and relies on her fine detective skills and good instincts. Together, Harry and Renee are a formidable pair.
I enjoyed the book, which is a police procedural interspersed with snippets about the characters' personal lives. Both Harry and Renee are essentially loners, devoting most of their energy to the job. This makes them excellent partners, and I hope they continue to work together.
I'd recommend the book to readers who like mysteries, especially Harry Bosch/Renee Ballard fans.
You can follow my reviews at https://reviewsbybarbsaffer.blogspot....
Michael Connelly brings us the second in the LAPD detective Renee Ballard series and he brings in Harry Bosch, a man Renee knows nothing about. Renee has been shunted onto The Late Show, the Hollywood nightshift, after an injustice earlier, but oddly enough she has settled in there and somehow it suits her. Her partner is on bereavement leave and she is on her own when she is called to a home where a woman's body, heavily decomposing, is discovered. It is assumed to be murder but it does not take Renee long to ascertain that it was an accident, with a starved cat feeding on the corpse. On returning to write up her report, she finds Harry rifling through a file cabinet of a colleague, and throws him out. However, her curiosity is aroused, she cannot help herself as she tries to find out who Harry is and what he was doing there.
Harry has the traumatised Elizabeth Clayton, a recovering drug addict, temporarily living with him, someone he met on his last case. Nine years ago, Elizabeth's 15 year old daughter, Daisy, was brutally murdered, her body bleached and discarded like trash in an alley. This spurs Harry to look into the cold case, as he witnesses Elizabeth's unrelieved grief destroying her. Having Elizabeth staying with him is not ideal, as his daughter, Maddie, is refusing to visit him while Elizabeth is there. Once Renee learns of Harry's investigations into finding Daisy's killer, she wants in. It soon becomes transparent that there is much the pair have in common, a dogged determination to work cases that borders on obsession and a penchant to bend the rules. In the meantime, both have other demands on their time. Harry as a reserve at SFD is looking into a cold case murder of the 52 year old gang member of the Varrio San Fer 13, Cristobel Vega, gaining insight into what happened after locating a witness, only to find the case exploding out of his control. Renee finds herself with the horrifying task of searching for the dismembered body parts of a murder victim at a refuse dump. As Renee and Harry plough through the mountains of information looking for a lead on Daisy's killer, the truth proves to be elusive. Will they succeed in finding the killer?
I did not expect Renee and Harry to be working together so soon, but after an initial awkwardness the two, unsurprisingly, mesh well, something they will sorely need as each finds themselves in life threatening and dangerous scenarios. Harry's future with SFD is uncertain, but what is clear is that this is not going to stop him doing what he does best, and it looks like we will see him pairing up with Renee again in the future. Connelly once again displays his attention to detail in police procedures, showing us that his research is demonstrably impressive. I loved this addition to the Renee and Harry series, but there is a strong part of me that wished I could have seen far more of Renee prior to her working with Harry. As usual, Connelly gives us a superb crime thriller with his trademark aplomb. Highly recommended! Many thanks to Orion for an ARC.
More Bosch than Ballard, Dark Sacred Night teams up Michael Connelly's longtime protagonist with his latest to create a well balanced and entertaining police procedural bathed in the darkness of LA's nighttime underworld.
Bosch has a case which haunts him; the murder of an underage prostitute he's never been able to solve. The case eats away at him. Every day he's reminded of his failure, in part due to the dead prostitutes mother who shares his personal residence - their relationship purely platonic.
Ballard, perennial member of the 'late show' aka the night shift in LA's police department, catches cases only to throw them to other detectives when the sun comes up. There's a decent smattering of small time cases for her wade through in Dark Sacred Night but it's when her world and Bosch's collide, do things get really interesting.
I enjoyed Dark Sacred Night. Personally, I was hoping for some more Ballard-based books; the character does well to hold her own without the need for a heavy hitter to push the book into 'best-selling territory' but Connolly makes the duo work; their chemistry is natural and the multi-POV methodology fits seamless into the narrative (this made more apparent with the changing narrators in the audio version).
My rating: 4/5 stars. Dark Sacred Night has a decent plot at its core complimented by enjoyable supplementary cases the two protagonists find themselves entangled. Bonus points for reading perfectly well as a standalone in its own right.
Michael Connelly is an great crime thriller writer with the excellent character Harry Bosch, but he doesn't stop there. He has created other enjoyable lead characters like Mickey Haller (The Lincoln Lawyer) and now Renee Ballard who comes into her own in this 2nd book where she teams up with
retired detective Harry Bosch.
Detective Renee Ballard works the late shift and teams up with Bosch who is investigating the death of fifteen-year-old Daisy Clayton, a drug addicted runaway who was brutally murdered 9 years ago. The pair share similar attitudes and are both prepared to bend the rules to get justice where necessary and make enjoyable reading. The character of Renee is further developed throughout the novel following on from 'The Late Show' where she was introduced by the skilful Connelly who looks to have another winner with this one. His books are so well thought out and show an inner knowledge of police procedural's and an eye for detail, supplying the reader with realistic entertaining books that rarely fail. I finished the book wanting to read another one straight away.
I would like to thank Net Galley and Orion Publishing for supplying a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
Night shift detective Renée Ballard is writing a report in the wee small hours of the morning concerning a woman found dead in the bathtub, when she notices a stranger going through the filing cabinets across the other side of the office. The man appears intent on finding something, and in his eagerness to discover whatever it is he’s looking for, he clearly hasn’t seen Renée watching him! After throwing him out, she discovers that it’s detective Harry Bosch who you used to work out of that very station. Bosch lies about what he was searching for but Renée is onto him and soon finds out what he was really up to, and she wants in on it, so the two of them join forces to investigate the murder some years previously of teenager Daisy Clayton.
In a brilliantly understated introduction, Michael Connelly brings together two seriously good detectives. Ballard still has her own cases to work though, and these run alongside another cold case of Bosch’s - the assassination of a Latino gang leader over a decade ago.
There’s no question that there’s a master storyteller at work here, the cases under examination exhibit just how intense and knowledgeable the police procedural aspect of Connelly’s books are - the pace is relentless, breathtakingly so at times, and the characters are so well defined that it’s not difficult to imagine that you know them personally. I would love to see this partnership continue into the next book and hope that Mr Connelly is thinking along the same lines! Highly recommended.
* Thank you to Netgalley and Orion Publishing for my ARC. I have given an honest unbiased review in exchange *