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The Black Echo by Michael Connelly

The Black Echo (1992)

by Michael Connelly

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Harry Bosch (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,7531051,388 (3.88)226
  1. 21
    The Lion by Nelson DeMille (Scottneumann)
  2. 00
    Night Dogs by Kent Anderson (Littlemissbashful)
    Littlemissbashful: Both feature ex Vietnam vets turned cop and corrupt police departments. The demons are the same but the response is different.
  3. 03
    Miss Pym Disposes by Josephine Tey (raizel)
    raizel: slight spoiler: both books have someone trying to do what is just and not succeeding

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» See also 226 mentions

English (100)  French (3)  Dutch (2)  Spanish (1)  All (106)
Showing 1-5 of 100 (next | show all)
It took a while to work through my to-read list and make it to my signed copy of The Black Echo. I met Michael at the Sydney Writers' Festival, had the customary quick chat and walked away with a couple of his books signed - made it worthwhile bringing that book from home. This gives you an idea that I have roughly a 8-9 month to-be-read list that isn't really becoming any shorter.

For those crime genre fans who haven't heard of Michael Connelly or his Harry Bosch series, I'd suggest that the rock you are living under is a little cramped and this book should encourage you out into the fresh air. When Michael writes a crime novel it is an intensely good read from a master in the genre. Don't believe me? They asked him to come on the TV show Castle because of his writing cred. If I have one criticism of the Bosch series it is that not every book is as compelling as this one. I was not a fan of City of Bones, despite it being an adequate crime novel.

Read and enjoy. ( )
  TysonAdams | Jun 20, 2017 |
Set in Los Angeles in perhaps the early 1990s, Harry Bosch is on the case of a dead man found in a drainage pipe. In fact, he identifies the victim, having served with him in Vietnam. Internal strife in the LAPD and the involvement of the FBI make life hard for Harry.

While this book did have many cliched plot points, I still enjoyed it. In fact, I think the tried & tested cliches made it easy to slip into the book. Harry has a chip on his shoulder and not much going on outside of his job. He smokes, doesn’t eat healthy, and drinks beer. He seems to be in trouble all the time. Either his lieutenant is yelling at him or the Internal Affairs office is threatening him. Now that his old Vietnam buddy, Billy Meadows, has been found dead, his PTSD is stirred up.

This story is rather light on female characters and when we do get an interesting one, Elizabeth Wish with the FBI, she’s quickly turned into a romantic interest. Still, she has her secrets and this gave her a little depth. I hope the author can do more with her character in future books.

Despite the typical plot points for this genre, Harry stands out for a few things. His mother was a prostitute who was murdered. Harry doesn’t hate prostitutes and seems to have a protective streak in general for women. He’s got a lovely house because a movie company paid him handsomely to use his name in a movie that was loosely based on a case he was involved in. So I really liked that he’s this older cop (early 40s) whose got this interesting past and knows that he truly wants to be in law enforcement.

The mystery itself was interesting for the most part, though there were times I felt that Harry or another character did something out of character just to up the drama or move the plot forward. In general, it’s a decent start to a series and I will probably check out more books by this author.

The Narration: Dick Hill is a favorite go-to narrator for me. He did a good job here, keeping all the male characters distinct. His female characters could use more femininity. I especially liked his ability to portray Harry’s emotions. ( )
  DabOfDarkness | Jun 18, 2017 |
The first of Connelly's Harry Bosch books has a lot going for it, most notably an excellent plot involving murder, banks heists, deception and the Vietnam war. Heironymous 'Harry' Bosch is a middle aged LA homicide detective whose career has gone from glittering to dismal - after being lauded by the press for his work solving high profile cases and having a TV character based on him he has been hounded from the prestigious Robbery Homicide Division to a lower ranking post in Hollywood Homicide by Internal Affairs, who are still looking to complete the job and chase him from the force. This is because he's the classic detective, brilliant but not seen as part of "the Family", something of a loose cannon (he even considers himself to be a bit of a cliché - he listens to jazz, drinks too much and is a loner who can't hold down a long term relationship).

Bosch is, however, an good character with a nice backstory and a decent amount of complexity. The same goes for some of the supporting cast, while others are cardboard cyphers (the two IAD officers, Lewis and Clark, for instance). The writing itself is ok - I do love the way the story unfolds, and the way that Connelly mixes Bosch's internal musings and memories into the narrative on occasion - but often the prose is downright clunky. In particular Connelly writes dialogue like a journalist (which he was); it is more about providing information than character. Indeed, there is hardly any character voice in the dialogues at all (with the possible exception, oddly, of Bosch's partner Jerry Edgar who is only a minor character, the voices are largely interchangeable; Bosch's narrative voice is strong but even that doesn't really carry over into his speech).

But a very strong, engaging thriller with some real substance, which I far prefer to the sort of page-turner thrillers that I finish and find I couldn't give a damn about any of events or characters I'd been reading about for the previous 400 pages (James Patterson and his ilk).

An odd side note. The cover photo on my edition seems to be of a rainy British motorway, which is a bit weird...

3.5/5 ( )
  Pezski | Jun 8, 2017 |
Not as good as I thought it would be I must admit. This is the first Michael Connolly book I have read and although I like Harry Bosch, the story was not overly interesting. Somewhere in the middle my interest declined a bit and it was by sheer force I managed to continue reading. Luckily the ending was really good and left me with the interest to read the rest of the books. ( )
  MaraBlaise | Apr 14, 2017 |
This is the first of the Bosch series so I'll cut it some slack. The beginning was slow but that is natural as we are being introduced to a new Character/new series so there is a lot of "housekeeping details" to take care of. The bulk of the book is excellent, Harry Bosch is very much a lone wolf but is partnered up with a FBI agent to solve a bank heist involving tunneling through the floor of a vault.

No details here to spoil the story but it is developed logically with several red herring to lead you astray. I like getting into the head of the main character, rather than a he-did-this / he-did- that kind of story.

Until the last 30 pages I was ready to give it at least a 4 star rating. But the story dies a Bugs Bunny death. It is very anti-climatic at that point and sort of boring to me as Connelly ties up every loose end and provides a final twist to the story.

That I did not enjoy as much and dropped my evaluation a 0.5 stars.

But overall I liked the book and will look forward to finding the next in the series. ( )
  Lynxear | Apr 10, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 100 (next | show all)
Big, brooding debut police thriller by Los Angeles Times crime-reporter Connelly, whose labyrinthine tale of a cop tracking vicious bank-robbers sparks and smolders but never quite catches fire. Swift and sure, with sharp characterizations, but at heart really a tightly wrapped package of cop-thriller cliches, from the hero's Dirty Harry persona to the venal brass, the mad-dog IAD cops, and the not-so-surprising villains. Still, Connelly knows his turf and perhaps he'll map it more freshly next time out.
added by Roycrofter | editKirkus Reviews (Nov 1, 1991)
Harry Bosch, detective de la policía de Los Ángeles quedó marcado por la dura experiencia de Vietnam. Ahora, un caso le devuelve su pasado. La víctima, Billy Meadows, había servido en su misma unidad. Ambos eran ratas de túnel que combatían en la red de pasajes subterráneos del Viet Cong; ambos experimentaron el terror del eco negro: la reverberación en las tinieblas de su propio pánico. Ahora Meadows está muerto. Pero su rastro parece apuntar a un gran atraco bancario perpetrado a través de túneles de alcantarillado.
added by Pakoniet | editLecturalia

» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Michael Connellyprimary authorall editionscalculated
Pasetti, Maria ClaraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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This is for W. Michael Connelly and Mary McEvoy Connelly
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The boy couldn't see in the dark, but he didn't need to.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
LAPD detective Harry Bosch is a loner and a nighthawk. One Sunday he gets a call out on his pager. A body has been found in a drainage tunnel off Mulholland Drive, Hollywood. At first sight, it looks like a routine drugs overdose case, but the one new puncture wound amidst the scars of old tracks leaves Bosch unconvinced. To make matters worse, Harry Bosch recognises the victim. Billy Meadows was a fellow 'tunnel rat' in Vietnam, running against the VC and the fear they all used to call the Black Echo. Bosch believes he let down Billy Meadows once before, so now he is determined to bring the killer to justice
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0446612731, Mass Market Paperback)

For maverick Lapd homicide detective Harry Bosch, the body in the drainpipe at Mulholland Dam is more than another anonymous statistic. This one is personal...because the murdered man was a fellow Vietnam "tunnel rat" who had fought side by side with him in a hellish underground war. Now Bosch is about to relive the horror of Nam. From a dangerous maze of blind alleys to a daring criminal heist beneath the city, his survival instincts will once again be tested to their limit. Pitted against enemies inside his own department and forced to make the agonizing choice between justice and vengeance, Bosch goes on the hunt for a killer whose true face will shock him.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:29 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

The very first Harry Bosch novel, winner of the Edgar Award for Best First Novel, is available once more. A body discovered in a drainpipe on Mulholland Drive turns out to be a fellow Vietnam "tunnel rat" who had fought by the side of the maverick LAPD homicide detective. Now Bosch is about to relive the horror of 'Nam while on the hunt for a killer whose true face will shock him.… (more)

» see all 14 descriptions

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