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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

The Burning Room

Series: Harry Bosch #19
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Publication Date: 11/03/2014
Format: Other
My Rating: 5 Stars
In the new thriller from #1 New York Times bestselling author Michael Connelly, Detective Harry Bosch and his rookie partner investigate a cold case that gets very hot… very fast.
In the LAPD’s Open-Unsolved Unit, not many murder victims die a decade after the crime. So when a man succumbs to complications from being shot by a stray bullet ten years earlier, Bosch catches a case in which the body is still fresh, but any other clues are virtually nonexistent. Even a veteran cop would find this one tough going, but Bosch’s new partner, Detective Lucia Soto, has no homicide experience. A young star in the department, Soto has been assigned to Bosch so that he can pass on to her his hard-won expertise.
Now Bosch and Soto are tasked with solving a murder that turns out to be highly charged and politically sensitive. Beginning with the bullet that has been lodged for years in the victim’s spine, they must pull new leads from years-old evidence, and these soon reveal that the shooting was anything but random.
As their investigation picks up speed, it leads to another unsolved case with even greater stakes: the deaths of several children in a fire that occurred twenty years ago. But when their work starts to threaten careers and lives, Bosch and Soto must decide whether it is worth risking everything to find the truth, or if it’s safer to let some secrets stay buried.

My Review

Michael Connelly is back with the anxiously awaited Harry Bosch #19, THE BURNING ROOM, and as usual he does not disappoint—delivering a riveting, fast-paced, well-drawn and compelling crime police procedural thriller. Even more exciting, upcoming television series produced by Amazon Studios, scheduled for release in 2015!
Harry Bosch, age sixty-four, with a colorful past, is close to retirement (can't keep him down for long) and is currently focused on a cold case from ten years ago, with the victim having just died, now considered murder—with a new rookie partner, twenty-eight year old Detective Lucia Soto more than ready to assist.
Orlando Merced, a mariachi musician, was transformed into a symbol for urban violence by an opportunistic mayoral candidate when he was wounded a decade earlier, a random victim of a drive-by shooting and now may be linked to an act of arson—an apartment fire that killed nine victims, most of them children, on the same day.
Merced was shot ten years ago by a sniper who fired into his band, Los Reyes Jalisco, as it played on Mariachi Plaza. He's just now died of blood poisoning, but the coroner's office is calling it murder, since the cause was the bullet that's been lodged in his body all these years.
Bosch wonders why Soto is so interested in this case and soon discovers she survived the fire as a child and had friends who didn't. The two crimes are linked and another crime, the violent robbery of an EZ-Bank the same day as the apartment arson.
Love, complex maverick, Harry Bosch (and Mickey Haller)—cannot believe he is now sixty-four and as always, love catching up with his daughter, who is now seventeen—a non-traditional winning father-daughter relationship. Always enjoy Connelly’s humor, precision, and attention to detail—Harry still has his old school thinking (with a lot of adventure left, like Clint Eastwood), in this new world of technology as he makes his way through politics, corruption, power, media, and secrets in sizzling hot LA.
I enjoyed the addition of driven and young Soto, and look forward to seeing more of her character as Bosch takes her under his wing. I listed to the audiobook and narrator, Titus Welliver delivered a suspenseful performance.
Looking forward to the TV series, and enjoyed the comparison mentioned in the latest media, “The Lincoln Lawyer, Mickey Haller is driven around in a 1986 Lincoln town car. In the pilot episode of Bosch, Harry drives around in an old-model Cadillac.” Wisdom coming from experience and age- How appropriate! As always, enjoy Connelly’s appearance on Castle as one of Castle's Poker Buddies.
Excited about Connelly’s next book, which will include Bosch, Haller, and Lucia – yeah, one guaranteed to satisfy mystery and crime fans of both main protagonists. If you haven’t experienced Bosch, THE BURNING ROOM is a chance to get an inside view and you will be compelled to read them all. No one can do crime as well as the king, Michael Connelly (from fellow South Floridian fan- having read them all). Love a successful crime writer who started his career in Florida. Another winner!
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