When evidence links a brutal murder in 1989 to a convicted rapist named Clayton Pell, the case should be water-tight. Pell's DNA was found on the victim - but he was only eight years old at the time.
This not the only mystery Harry Bosch has to solve. A man jumped - or was pushed - from a window. The victim's father is Councilman Irving, who's been intent on destroying Harry's career for years. Now Irving wants Harry to head up the investigation.
Harry uncovers traces of two of the city's deepest secrets: a killer operating for as many as three decades without being detected, and a conspiracy that goes back into the dark history of the police department ...
Throughout my 20 plus years as a crime fiction reader, I’ve encountered many a detective that I have admired. I’ve followed the progress of their investigations, marvelling at their skills and intuition; the ability to dissect the various strands of evidence and point themselves in the next logical direction; their empathy for the victims and their families; their tenacity in pursuing their case; their courage and bravery in facing physical danger and their character and backbone much needed to withstand the interference and pressures from those higher up the food chain, often running in tandem with a hostile media and angry public. Of all the detectives I’ve read about, Connelly’s creation Harry Bosch is definitely my favourite. (If anyone decided to murder my skinny ass.....ok it’s not skinny....he’s the guy I want seconded to the Bedfordshire police to head up the investigation.)
In The Drop, Harry runs two enquiries. He has an open unsolved case over twenty years old where the DNA evidence points to a suspect, who already has convictions for sex offences but who was a young boy when the crime was committed.
His second case is an investigation that sees him cross paths with his nemesis, Councilman Irving. Irving’s son has fallen from a seventh storey window at a hotel and he wants Bosch to establish the truth of the matter; suicide, accident or murder.
Connelly skilfully weaves together the investigation into the two crimes, which Bosch runs concurrently, despite being pressured by the brass upstairs and Irving to prioritise the Councilman’s son’s death. Bosch resists Irving’s attempts to control his enquiry and delves deeper into the background of George Irving’s business dealings and marriage, uncovering possible corruption in City Hall and Irvin Irving’s alleged involvement in feathering his son’s nest.
Harry’s cold case sees him gain a romantic attachment with a sex therapist who is counselling his major suspect, whilst harbouring her own secrets regarding her fractured family. Bosch also contends with a working partner, Chu who he doesn’t fully trust and as a consequence finds Chu’s resentment at his treatment deflecting his focus from the investigations. His teenage daughter also occupies a lot of his thoughts, as he continues to construct and nurture a relationship with her after the death of her mother several years ago. All the while, the clock runs down on his tenure with the police department and he considers life on the outside.
Having struggled to enjoy Connelly’s last few books with the exception of The Fifth Witness, I was delighted to read this offering. Back on form and attains the heights of some of his earlier work.
5 from 5......and an early contender for April’s book of the month.
I picked up my copy late last year whilst casing some charity shop book stocks.