Sunday 11 December 2016

Review: The Drop by Michael Connelly

Orion, £18.99

Published 06/11/2011 | 06:00

Some years ago, Detective Harry Bosch made a rare mistake. He resigned from the Los Angeles police force and discovered that he hated retirement.

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But faced with severe staff shortages the department offered him his job back on what they termed the Deferred Retirement Option Plan, and now that option is coming to an end, too, and he's facing a bleak future.

Working with the cold-cases unit, he manages to get a DNA hit for a 1989 rape and murder case that suggests a convicted rapist was the killer. The problem is that the man is only 29, which would make him only eight at the time of the murder.

Struggling to find out how the man's DNA was found on the victim's body, Harry is distracted by a bizarre request from one of the city's most powerful politicians, Councilman Irvin Irving.

His son has been found dead, an apparent suicide, having thrown himself from the seventh floor of LA landmark hotel Chateau Marmont. Irving is convinced his lobbyist son has been murdered, and wants Bosch to prove it.

But why choose him, Harry wonders. There is a long history of bad blood between him and Irving, and Irving was the one responsible for forcing his resignation all those years ago.

As both cases unfold, Harry and his team make two chilling discoveries -- that a serial killer may have been operating in the city for three decades without anyone knowing, and that there is a serious political conspiracy that goes to the very top of the dark history of the police department he works for.

Michael Connelly is the undisputed master of police procedural thrillers and this latest episode in the colourful life of Harry Bosch is quite literally unputdownable.

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