"The Burning Room", by Michael Connelly

The Burning Room (Harry Bosch, #19) - Michael Connelly
Book # 19, in the Harry Bosch Mystery series

Once again, Michael Connelly has written a classy and a clever page-turner and has delivered another captivating story for his fans. In this latest our 64 years old school protagonist is teamed up with a new sidekick, a female rookie investigator named Lucia Soto, who happens to be an expert in new technologies. Harry is making every police minutes count before his retirement working convoluted cases involving murder victims of a long time ago. “The Burning Room” centers on two cold cases.

The first involves the recent death of a paraplegic ex- mariachi Orlando Merced. Rarely does a victim die decade after the crime of complications from being shot. Harry is too pleased to work a case in which the body is still fresh…This task will turn out to be highly charged and politically sensitive.

This swift moving story only picks up speed when Harry discovers that Lucy is investing her spare time on another cold case one involving arson and multiple homicides: an apartment fire that killed several children 20 years ago. After finding Lucy was one of the survivors Harry was even more motivated and willing to go along with her and bend some rules in order to bring closure.

The interplay between Harry and Lucy is quite dramatic and while they are searching for clues in order to solve their cases we are immersed in the minutia of a police procedural making every aspect of an investigation exciting. The addition of Lucy energizes this series, a mentor showing the ropes to rookie and even with some mistakes make her know she has what it takes to be a good detective is refreshing. The ending let us believe Harry may leave (or be pushed out) the LAPD but I do not think this is the end of our beloved Bosch….

Once more, we have a beautifully constructed plot with clever dialogue and crisp prose. Not a dull moment with lot of suspense, many unexpected twists and turns and fascinating tidbits of forensics. An ending that opens the door to new adventures…..we will see if Lucy will be a permanent fixture……I hope so.

Another excellent book by a master story teller