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A Darkness More Than Night (A Harry Bosch Novel) Mass Market Paperback – March 1, 2002

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Product Details

  • Series: A Harry Bosch Novel
  • Mass Market Paperback: 488 pages
  • Publisher: Vision (March 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446667900
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446667906
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.2 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (602 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #419,108 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

When a sheriff's detective shows up on former FBI man Terry McCaleb's Catalina Island doorstep and requests his help in analyzing photographs of a crime scene, McCaleb at first demurs. He's newly married (to Graciela, who herself dragged him from retirement into a case in Blood Work), has a new baby daughter, and is finally strong again after a heart transplant. But once a bloodhound, always a bloodhound. One look at the video of Edward Gunn's trussed and strangled body puts McCaleb back on the investigative trail, hooked by two details: the small statue of an owl that watches over the murder scene and the Latin words "Cave Cave Dus Videt," meaning "Beware, beware, God sees," on the tape binding the victim's mouth.

Gunn was a small-time criminal who had been questioned repeatedly by LAPD Detective Harry Bosch in the unsolved murder of a prostitute, most recently on the night he was killed. McCaleb knows the tense, cranky Bosch (Michael Connelly's series star--see The Black Echo, The Black Ice, et al.) and decides to start by talking to him. But Bosch has time only for a brief chat. He's a prosecution witness in the high-profile trial of David Storey, a film director accused of killing a young actress during rough sex. By chance, however, McCaleb discovers an abstruse but concrete link between the scene of Gunn's murder and Harry Bosch's name:

"This last guy's work is supposedly replete with owls all over the place. I can't pronounce his first name. It's spelled H-I-E-R-O-N-Y-M-U-S. He was Netherlandish, part of the northern renaissance. I guess owls were big up there."

McCaleb looked at the paper in front of him. The name she had just spelled seemed familiar to him.

"You forgot his last name. What's his last name?"

"Oh, sorry. It's Bosch. Like the spark plugs."

Bosch fits McCaleb's profile of the killer, and McCaleb is both thunderstruck and afraid--thunderstruck that a cop he respects might have committed a horrendous murder and afraid that Bosch may just be good enough to get away with it. And when Bosch finds out (via a mysterious leak to tabloid reporter Jack McEvoy, late of Connelly's The Poet) that he's being investigated for murder, he's furious, knowing that Storey's defense attorney may use the information to help get his extravagantly guilty client off scot-free.

It's the kind of plot that used to make great Westerns: two old gunslingers circling each other warily, each of them wondering if the other's gone bad. But there's more than one black hat in them thar hills, and Connelly masterfully joins the plot lines in a climax and denouement that will leave readers gasping but satisfied. --Barrie Trinkle --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Adult/High School-Harry Bosch, the worn, pragmatic Los Angeles police detective, protagonist of a number of Connelly's earlier books, is joined by Terry McCaleb, former FBI crime-scene profiler, introduced in Blood Work (Little, Brown, 1998). Harry is immersed in testifying at the murder trial of a Hollywood film director, Jack Storey. When McCaleb, retired and living a quiet life with a new wife and two young children, is asked by a former colleague to look at the investigation materials of a recent gruesome homicide, he realizes just how much he misses his vocation. Terry alone has noticed some clues from the crime-scene video that point toward the influence of Renaissance painter Hieronymus Bosch. Despite pleas from his wife, Terry is drawn into the investigation and finds, to his dismay, that pointers lead straight to acquaintance Harry Bosch, whose real name is Hieronymus. Certain details in Harry's life fit in well with the profile Terry is developing of a ritualistic killer. The clues stemming from Bosch's paintings may lead readers straight to the Internet to view some of Bosch's well-known works to see the clues for themselves. The plot is intricate, and the twists and turns keep coming, but it is so well done, and the characters are so vivid, that confusion isn't a problem. Despite its length, this involving book is a fast read with "can't put it down" appeal.

Carol DeAngelo, Kings Park Library, Burke, VA

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Michael Connelly decided to become a writer after discovering the books of Raymond Chandler while attending the University of Florida. Once he decided on this direction he chose a major in journalism and a minor in creative writing ' a curriculum in which one of his teachers was novelist Harry Crews.

After graduating in 1980, Connelly worked at newspapers in Daytona Beach and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, primarily specializing in the crime beat. In Fort Lauderdale he wrote about police and crime during the height of the murder and violence wave that rolled over South Florida during the so-called cocaine wars. In 1986, he and two other reporters spent several months interviewing survivors of a major airline crash. They wrote a magazine story on the crash and the survivors which was later short-listed for the Pulitzer Prize for feature writing. The magazine story also moved Connelly into the upper levels of journalism, landing him a job as a crime reporter for the Los Angeles Times, one of the largest papers in the country, and bringing him to the city of which his literary hero, Chandler, had written.

After three years on the crime beat in L.A., Connelly began writing his first novel to feature LAPD Detective Hieronymus Bosch. The novel, The Black Echo, based in part on a true crime that had occurred in Los Angeles , was published in 1992 and won the Edgar Award for Best First Novel by the Mystery Writers of America. Connelly has followed that up with 18 more novels. His books have been translated into 31 languages and have won the Edgar, Anthony, Macavity, Shamus, Dilys, Nero, Barry, Audie, Ridley, Maltese Falcon (Japan), .38 Caliber (France), Grand Prix (France), and Premio Bancarella (Italy) awards.

Michael lives with his family in Florida.

Customer Reviews

I read this book in one night--I could not put it down.
Jon Sheppard
Superb character development, very well written, and a story that holds my interest from beginning to end.
I've read all of Michael Connelly's "Harry Bosch novels!

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

81 of 84 people found the following review helpful By Tung Yin VINE VOICE on January 30, 2001
Format: Hardcover
"A Darkness More Than Night" (the title comes from a line in a novel by Raymond Chandler, who was Connelly's inspiration for becoming a writer) is Michael Connelly's 10th novel. Six of the first nine star LAPD detective Harry Bosch; one of the other three ("Blood Work") stars Terry McCaleb, a former FBI agent forced into retirement by heart disease necessitating a transplant.
Although Bosch and McCaleb had worked together before, offscreen so to speak, "Darkness" brings them together in the same novel. McCaleb is happily retired from the serial killer profiling business, making a living from chartering fishing trips around Catalina Island in Southern California, when an LA Sheriff's Dept. deputy friend of his comes to him for his help on a strange murder. (In case you are wondering, the Sheriff's Department is a county agency; it polices the unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County. Crimes within L.A. city limits fall within the jurisdiction of the LAPD.) Against his wife's wishes, McCaleb agrees to take a look. He comes across a clue that the sheriff's deputies missed the first time, and that clue leads him into a whole new area of investigation that eventually points at . . . Harry Bosch.
Some of Connelly's mysteries contain what for me were stunning twists -- "The Concrete Blonde" and "Trunk Music" come to mind. "Darkness," on the other hand, proved to be relatively easy to figure out about 100 pages before the end of the novel. Nevertheless, it's still a gripping read. Most of Connelly's books are dark and edgy, but the darkness and edginess are even more palpable in this book.
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73 of 81 people found the following review helpful By Douglas A. Greenberg VINE VOICE on May 28, 2001
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Michael Connelly is the BEST mystery-thriller writer working today, so it almost goes without saying that this book stands head and shoulders above most others within this overcrowded genre. In *A Darkness More Than Night*, he demonstrates once again his extraordinary skills in terms of weaving intricate plots filled with twists, turns, and early-innocuous-clues-that-become-pivotal-later-on. He also has developed not just one but two extraordinary protagonists, Harry Bosch and Terrance McCaleb, and their "face-off" in this book adds a fascinating dimension to an already fine work. Connelly also does a wonderful job of creating the *noir*, "there is evil afoot in this world" mood/philosophy that pervades his books. The discussions of Hieronymus Bosch's paintings, the symbolic meanings of owls, etc., are absolutely riveting.
Given that I've bestowed such effusive praise upon this novel, why four stars instead of five? First, it's apparent that the novel will be appreciated far more by readers who have already read not just one or two but ALL of Connelly's previous works. Yes, it's common for mystery writers to write their successive books with an element of "ongoing story" to the work, including occasional references to events and cases described previously. But Connelly employs this practice so heavily in this book that it almost seems futile for any reader to pick up *A Darkness More Than Night* without having gone through at least a few previous Connelly mysteries.
The second reservation I had is one that other reviewers have mentioned, i.e., that although the McCaleb vs.
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37 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Gabby Hayze on April 19, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I've read all but two of Michael Connelly's books. I think he's a good writer, and through most of his work, I thought he was a good storyteller. Which is why I was unpleasantly surprised with A Darkness More Than Night.
I think this book is a cheat. Connelly presents a flawed premise, pads the middle of the book with a couple hundred pages of filler, and then creates an ending that is no surprise and doesn't even qualify for the term mystery. Connelly is a good writer, but even he couldn't pull this one off.
A recurring theme in Connelly's books is the "good" versus "evil" situation. He also likes his good guy characters to struggle with philosophical questions about the evil that men/women do and what it takes to bring these people to justice. Harry Bosch seems to fluctuate between good and evil to the extent that the guy is more schizophrenic in this book than he's been in any of the others. I would buy that if there were a good reason to make him such an undefinable character. But in this case, there wasn't a reason like that. For no reason other than Connelly apparently wanted to give Terry McCaleb something to do, Bosch becomes a suspect in a murder. And while lip service was given to the thought that an investigation of Bosch had better produce hard evidence that he did what McCaleb suspects he may have done, it seems to me that everyone had no problem believing that Bosch just suddenly decided to become a cold blooded murderer. Given everything readers of Connelly's books have been led to believe about Bosch up to this point, that just doesn't make any sense. 400 pages of fill doesn't make it any more credible a premise.
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