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Echo Park Hardcover – October 9, 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 755 customer reviews
Book 12 of 16 in the Mickey Haller Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Bestseller Connelly's compelling 12th Harry Bosch novel (after 2005's The Closers) offers some new wrinkles on a familiar theme—the aging detective haunted by the one who got away. In Bosch's case, the elusive quarry is the man who abducted a 22-year-old equestrian, Marie Gesto, in 1993. Having returned to active duty as a member of the LAPD Open-Unsolved Unit, Bosch repeatedly pulls the file to see if he can discover something new and give some small solace to the victim's parents. When a chance police stop of a suspicious vehicle nets serial killer Raynard Waits, who's carrying body parts in his van, Bosch assesses the murderer's claim that he was responsible for killing Gesto, too. The weary and cynical detective soon suspects that Waits is trying to barter information for a reduced sentence of life imprisonment. Political motivations connected with the upcoming DA election also cloud the investigation. Smooth prose and plausible characters—even the secondary figures—elevate this several notches above the standard cop vs. serial-killer thriller. Author tour. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Bookmarks Magazine

Harry Bosch has been around since the Edgar Award?winning The Black Echo (1992), and critics agree that neither he nor the police-procedural series has lost of any of their original luster. Instead, they're both getting better with age. As in previous installments, both character and plot drive Echo Park: Harry's passion for the case and his guilt at having not found the killer before more murders occurred create a flawed, convincing hero. Michael Connelly's sharp eye for Los Angeles, from Sunset Boulevard to Beachwood Canyon and Echo Park, also kept critics turning the pages. Overall, Echo Park "is a richly imagined and finely crafted piece that grabs the reader on Page One and locks him but a half-step behind Bosch on every page that follows" (Denver Post).

Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 405 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company; 1st edition (October 9, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316734950
  • ISBN-13: 978-0739475706
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (755 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #650,246 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Cynthia K. Robertson TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 17, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Michael Connelly's latest Harry Bosch mystery, Echo Park, is just about as good as it gets. I am amazed at the consistent high quality of Connelly's writing.

In 1993, Connelly was assigned the case of Marie Gesto, a young lady who disappeared on her way to a riding stable. Her body was never found, no suspect was ever identified, and the unsolved case continues to haunt Bosch (an LAPD detective now working in their Open-Unsolved Unit). In 2006, Raynard Waits is driving a van in Echo Park at 2:00 AM when he is stopped by the LAPD. Trash bags are discovered in his van that contain the body parts of two women. In an effort to avoid the death penalty, Waits wants to make a deal and confess to the murders of nine other individuals--including Marie Gesto. But Bosch isn't convinced that Waits murdered Gesto and things go terribly awry.

Politics play a big role in Echo Park. Richard "Ricochet" O'Shea is a prosecutor running for district attorney. He's trying to use the Waits' case as a publicity stunt. When things go bad, he tries to blame the LAPD. The now retired assistant police commissioner and Bosch nemesis, Irvin Irving, is running for city council. He blames Bosch for his forced retirement and takes potshots at him in the press. Anytime politicians get involved, there seem to be bribes, cover-ups, blaming, and sacrifices that will benefit themselves.

In Echo Park, FBI agent Rachel Walling (of The Poet and The Narrows) returns. Although not part of the official investigation, Walling still offers her expertise as a former psychological profiler. She also helps to keep Bosch on an even keel and provides a romantic twist.

My only criticism of Echo Park is that the political angle plays such a prominent part in this book, but then fizzles at the end. We never learn if O'Shea and Irving are elected to higher office, or not. Otherwise, I would have given Echo Park five stars.
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Here's a book about feeding the dog, meaning that though each of us have competing desires and self-imposed limitations, we choose which part of our character to "feed", we draw the lines that we will refuse to cross. Mr. Connelly's finest creation, Detective Bosch, is one of those rare members of our society who are tasked with forming and testing assumptions regarding the limits of individuals. As we learn in short order in any mystery, you just never know what someone may be capable of--but Bosch does. Society has vested in Bosch the power to judge--not to convict or sentence, but to judge, a rather fine distinction. For this reason Connelly can set Bosch free; indeed, Bosch does much better work when he is unencumbered by rules, relationships and regulations. In Echo Park, we learn yet again that Bosch's judgment is not to be trifled with. More significantly, Bosch has become a much stronger character, more confident in his judgment and actions.

Connelly writes a multi-dimensional mystery. There are always several things going on at once; indeed, some threads continue from book to book. In short, Connelly makes excellent use of the rich history upon which he can draw from the former volumes in the series. And, I noted that our author must have plenty of free time to scope out the local restaurants; he's grown weary of Phillipe's.

Connelly remains at the top of his form and this work shows no hints of the slacking off that so often (and regrettably) takes place when the shelf holding an author's published works starts to creak under the weight. In this book we see how the power of choice makes all the difference--to say more risks spoiling a great read, but suffice it to say that we have the power to overcome any difficulty if we choose to do so.
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Format: Hardcover
Over the past six months I have read nearly every Michael Connelly book with both my own personal attention to the study of the craft of writing, and for my overall amusement and entertainment. Echo Park is the first book that I have been waiting for from this distinguished author who has raised the literary bar for those writers who concentrate in the suspense/thriller genre'. In Echo Park, Michael Connelly delievers a terrific continuation of the Harry Bosch 'movement' with deliberate and flawless attention and consistancy to character development and plot line in juxtaposition to setting, thematic, and character profile.

What is amazing in Connelly's writing of Bosch in this informative and clever novel is how the author brings the reader into the head and heart of the protagonist in such a way that the reader feels their own heart racing, hair standing straight up, pins dagging into your spin, as you too question if Bosch errored in ways regarding the investigation of a murder years earlier that perhaps somehow allowed for more innocent lives to be victemized by a serial killer.

This is one of Connelly's best so far, and by far my favorite in the Harry Bosch series. What is clear is that Michael Connelly continues to wrap his hands magnificantly on the craft of storytelling, combining historical fact and 'truthisms' in the creation of the fiction world Harry Bosch navigates thru. Educational, pulsating, page-turning, Michael Connelly does a wonderful job bringing the reader to Echo Park.
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