Book review: The Wrong Side of Goodbye by Michael Connelly

Thursday, October 20, 2016 Permalink

Bosch is back. And that’s cause for celebration, surely?

I really enjoyed this last instalment in the long-running Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch series. I have kinda been enjoying Harry playing PI rather than having to deal with the rigours (ie. boundaries) of the police service. I think my enjoyment has increased as I also picture Titus Welliver – who plays Bosch in the TV series – in the role. I’m normally not very visual but now I have an image of him in my little mind it makes our outings even more enjoyable.

Book review: The Wrong Side of Goodbye by Michael ConnellyThe Wrong Side of Goodbye (Harry Bosch, #21; Harry Bosch, #24)
by Michael Connelly
Series: Harry Bosch #24
Published by Allen & Unwin AU
on October 24th 2016
Source: Allen & Unwin
Genres: Crime Fiction
ISBN: 9781760293833
Pages: 400

Harry Bosch is California's newest private investigator. He doesn't advertise, he doesn't have an office, and he's picky about who he works for, but it doesn't matter. His chops from thirty years with the LAPD speak for themselves.

Soon one of Southern California's biggest moguls comes calling. The reclusive billionaire is nearing the end of his life and is haunted by one regret. When he was young, he had a relationship with a Mexican girl, his great love. But soon after becoming pregnant, she disappeared. Did she have the baby? And if so, what happened to it?

Desperate to know whether he has an heir, the dying magnate hires Bosch, the only person he can trust. With such a vast fortune at stake, Harry realizes that his mission could be risky not only for himself but for the one he's seeking. But as he begins to uncover the haunting story--and finds uncanny links to his own past--he knows he cannot rest until he finds the truth.

At the same time, unable to leave cop work behind completely, he volunteers as an investigator for a tiny cash-strapped police department and finds himself tracking a serial rapist who is one of the most baffling and dangerous foes he has ever faced.

Connelly kinda offers up two cases in The Wrong Side of Goodbye reflecting the duality of Bosch’s current life. He’s still persona non grata with LAPD (and others in law enforcement unhappy with the fact he’s taking his old employers to court over his forced ‘retirement’), but is working as a San Fernando police reservist (an unpaid volunteer) on cold cases. It only requires two shifts each week and is something Bosch can easily manage alongside his PI business.

He’s not technically supposed to use SFPD resources for his own private work, but… Bosch being Bosch, he doesn’t intend to, but does nonetheless. I always get that sense he ‘intends’ playing by the rules but his determination to solve cases and passion for justice always overrules those intentions.

Bosch is able to uncover details of gazillionaire Whitney Vance’s former girlfriend and potential heir fairly easily. But given Vance’s nervousness about others knowing what Bosch is up to, we know there will be other factors at play… which there certain are.

And in his SFPD work, Bosch and a colleague piece together the details of the serial rapist but are in the proverbial ‘race against time’ before he strikes again. And it’s in that world we’re reminded of Bosch’s refusal to ‘play the game’ when it comes to procedures and authority.

I know I’ve said this before, but Connelly obviously has Bosch’s character and development down pat. He’s familiar to regular readers. Like an old friend.

In the background Bosch’s relationship with his (now college-aged) daughter Maddie continues to develop and there’s a smidge of personal growth almost visible to the naked eye in terms of Bosch and his relationship with others around him.

I inhaled this book in a sitting and it’s great to see (with the publication of the 24th Bosch novel) Connelly’s able to maintain the quality of this series.

The Wrong Side of Goodbye by Michael Connelly was published in Australia by Allen and Unwin and is available from 24 October 2016.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher for review purposes.

Are you a fan of Harry Bosch? Have you seen the TV series?

  • Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews
    October 21, 2016

    I haven’t heard of Harry Bosch before, to be honest! But I love that your enjoyment has increased now that you imagine the TV show hero when you read about Harry 🙂 It’s great when that happens 🙂
    I hope you’re having a fantastic week!

    • Debbish
      October 21, 2016

      Thanks Lexxie. Harry’s been around for a while but I didn’t get into the series until after it started and came in part-way through. The earlier books I’d only read sporadically!

I'd love to hear your thoughts