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60 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Harry Bosch is back
Still recovering from the events of "A Darkness More than Night", LA detective Harry Bosch is confronted with a nightmare. The partial skeleton of a child is discovered on a hillside. A forensic anthropologist is called in and his examination of the remains reveals a harrowing tale of prolonged abuse. Harry swears he will catch the culprit, and once again...
Published on 10 April 2002

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Plot is a bit thin
I've now read over half off the Michael Connelly books and this is the first time I've been motivated to say anything negative. I've thoroughly enjoyed each read but I found elements of this particular plot hard to comprehend. The narrative was very good (as is the norm) but some areas left huge gaping holes and I felt certain decisions were not sufficiently explained to...
Published on 20 Aug. 2010 by Ajoneill


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60 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Harry Bosch is back, 10 April 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: City Of Bones (Hardcover)
Still recovering from the events of "A Darkness More than Night", LA detective Harry Bosch is confronted with a nightmare. The partial skeleton of a child is discovered on a hillside. A forensic anthropologist is called in and his examination of the remains reveals a harrowing tale of prolonged abuse. Harry swears he will catch the culprit, and once again enters the darkest recesses of human cruelty.
Based on a real murder (in which the perpetrator was successfully prosecuted, thank God!) this is yet another brilliant work from Connelly. Bosch is a wonderfully crafted protagonist, and as usual the writing is first rate. The description of injuries given by the anthropologist is disturbing reading, all the more so considering that it is based in fact, yet the subject is treated sensitively and in no way appears voyeuristic. The rest of the story (I won't give it away!) flows beatifully.
Connelly is a fine author and this book would grace any crime fan's collection. Thoroughly recommended.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Plot is a bit thin, 20 Aug. 2010
This review is from: City Of Bones (Paperback)
I've now read over half off the Michael Connelly books and this is the first time I've been motivated to say anything negative. I've thoroughly enjoyed each read but I found elements of this particular plot hard to comprehend. The narrative was very good (as is the norm) but some areas left huge gaping holes and I felt certain decisions were not sufficiently explained to the reader. Based on my previous Connelly reads, this is extremely uncharacteristic. However, that said, this will not deter me from continuing to read the rest of his books which are generally excellent.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars One of the weakest of a great series, 9 Sept. 2010
This review is from: City Of Bones (Paperback)
Throughout the years i ve read a lot of Michael Connelly books and loved most of them; The Poet, A Darkness More Than Night and The Concrete Blonde being amongst the most memorable. However i have to admit that the novel reviewed here is quite weak. To quote another reviewer with whom i perfectly agree, a story with a very thin plot.
One fine day a dog finds a bone up in the mountains which is identified as human. That of a child who has been dead for some 20yrs. How interesting can that be, you might ask. Not very much is my answer. Not much of a plot and a terrible ending. Didnt understand the reason why the rookie was brought in the story in the first place. Maybe to fill in some pages. Bosch as usual is the only one who believes he can crack the case, with everyone out against him. Maybe i need to take a break from the Bosch series for the time being and return to them later on. Hope Connelly returns to form with the ones after it in the series.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Melancholic, yet gripping, 21 Jan. 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: City Of Bones (Paperback)
I'd recently been introduced to Harry Bosch, the LA detective featured, by my father. This was only the second novel, with him as lead, that I'd read. It's well plotted, with several wrong turns, and "you think you know who done it and you're wrong" twists....and you really care for this flawed character, who suffers a loss midway, and suffers for his compulsion at the end. It's not a perfectly happy ending, nor should it be, yet it's uplifting enough that he kinda catches who did it, and why, against the odds. But only after he's paid a meaningufl price for what he's learnt. Characters, even the incidental ones are carefully drawn, and the dialogue is compelling, and not cliched. Well worth a few pounds, and a few hours of your time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent character-driven murder mystery, 23 July 2008
By 
OEJ - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: City Of Bones (Paperback)
This is the eleventh Connelly novel and the seventh full-on Bosch episode, on this occasion a relatively simple story that is completely driven by the examinations into the mind and soul of the lead character. LAPD Detective Harry Bosch and his partner Detective Jerry Edgar find themselves involved in a search for whoever was responsible for the murder of a 12-year-old boy some twenty years earlier, after a single bone is found by a dog. The synopsis therefore is straightforward: identify the victim, track down family and anyone else who knew him, come up with a suspect and close the case.

But within and throughout this investigation it is the state of mind of Harry Bosch that is so wonderful to read; his frowned-upon love-affair with a rookie cop, and for the reader a study of his mission in life and what makes him tick. With every Bosch story we get to see inside his mind that little bit more each time and I for one never tire of it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars What a disappointment, 26 Jun. 2003
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This review is from: City Of Bones (Paperback)
Having been a fan of Ian Rankin for a long time and having exhausted the Rebus books imagine my pleasure on finding Harry Bosch. The initial books were excellent imparting Harry's persona and his struggle with his demons well, creating a great atmosphere and with good involving plots showing us Harry walking the line between the letter of the law and justice. This book seems like it's been written by a different person. The plot is flat with little or no twists just plodding along. The characterisation is non-existent with Harry, Edgar and everyone else lacking any life. There's no finesh and it feels to me like an book which has yet to have the flesh put on it. This is the first time I've had to force myself to continue reading a Connelly book and I got to the end but I'd advise anyone else to not bother. I've got his next book on the shelf waiting for me and I'm praying that Connellys back to form with that one.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as expected, 1 Sept. 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: City Of Bones (Hardcover)
I note others say that Connelly is "back on track". Well I'm not a big reader of MC, but I have read a few of his books. Two particularly had me well impressed. Perhaps I expected too much of this book...
Harry is an interesting character, a cop with a heart and great commitment. Unfortunately, he tends to find himself in positions that the LA police force could well do without.
Here we had the discovery of a set of bones belonging to a young boy, and Harry is determined to solve the case. The remains of a twenty year corpse do not augur well for many clues; and this is where the book is really good. Bosch (and team) discover them - enough of them to identify the body and provide some leads. The frustration the police must feel in such cases is readily apparent, although not rammed down your throat as a statement of the obvious.
On the way Bosch picks up a love interest with complications, which provides a somewhat shortlived sub-plot. Relationships with colleagues - old and new - are put to the test.
Even though there is a twist at the end (within a small number of suspects), I found this book on the slow side. There was no adrenaline rush to finish it - it became an "at leisure" read over a week.
Yes there was a bit of chasing - but not timed well enough for the ending. Yes there were tragedies along the way - but there was not enough about, and depth to, the characters to make me particularly care about them and their demise. The life and death of the victim, well documented and with great feeling, mitigated this to a significant extent, as did the final twist. The book also ends with a big question mark hanging over Harry's future.
Ultimately I was left feeling shortchanged on pace and twists in general, pace being my main criticism.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Not bad, 25 Mar. 2013
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As a fan of Conelly's Harry Bosh series I can honestly say that I have read all of them now. But City of Bones is definitely one of the darkest tales in the series. The story of the case starts off well. As with all of Michael Connely's books it is easy to read.

This book is full of twists and turns and interesting characters. Throughout the story everyone and anyone is a suspect and It isn't till near the end that you eventually know who was the killer!.

But I personally felt the case wasn't deep enough. The story of a single murder and the fact that eventually nobody cares and goes back to their old routines makes it a pretty shallow case for Bosh.

Bosh's relationship with the "Boot" and her story are interesting but quite frankly she's definitely not the most interesting "close" relationship Bosh has had. Personally I found the scene (without giving too much away) where their relationship gets cut short very odd and poorly explained. In the end its never fully explained what happened there!.

Thankfully Bosch's partner Edgar gets more of a part in City of Bones which is definitely a change from the usual lone-detective atmosphere of the Bosh series. I can't help feeling the series could've been a better read if Bosch had been more keen to get to know his partner rather than the way he seems to avoid him most of the time.
Honestly I don't mind Bosch being the Centre of the series. But I can't help feeling he's been going it alone too long.

Anyway my overall feeling is that City of Bones is a very enjoyable easy to read book well worth checking out. It's not quite got the depth of the average Clancy or Grisham story but it just flows so well that you're having to drag yourself away from the book.... or you'll never get anything done!.
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of the Finest of the Bosch Series, 2 Sept. 2011
By 
Stephanie De Pue (Wilmington, NC USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: City Of Bones (Paperback)
"City of Bones," (2002), is the eighth novel in the American crime author Michael Connelly's best-selling, prize winning LAPD Inspector Harry Bosch series. Of course Connelly, now a mega-seller in light of the film The Lincoln Lawyer [DVD], based on the author's book of the same name, has had many best sellers. Connelly is a former journalist, a crime beat writer for the Los Angeles Times, who certainly earned his spurs in murder while earning his daily bread.

The Bosch series, Los Angeles-set police procedurals, looks at life on the "noir" side in that city. Bosch, who was supposedly named after the famous 15th century Dutch painter by his mother, finds himself drawn into a case that brings up dark memories when the bones of a schoolboy are found on New Years Day. A retired doctor walking his dog in the Hollywood Hills has let her off the leash; Calamity brings back a bone that the doctor is sure is human, and shows signs of terrible, lifelong abuse. Bosch had been orphaned when he was eleven: the murdered boy appears to be 10-13 years old. As the cops start looking, more bones quickly come to light: the boy apparently was buried only shallowly. Bosch will also embark upon an against-the -rules affair with a much-younger woman cop: one way and another, he's in for a bad time. Yet Bosch stubbornly discovers the child's identity and reconstructs his fractured life, determined that the boy won't be forgotten. In what I consider to be one of Connelly's most masterful `tours de force,' he comes up with several characters, one after another, and all believable, as the boy's possible murderer. The author further deepens his plot by telling us of the bones that come out of the La Brea tar pits, an ancient hazard to life now situated in the middle of busy Los Angeles; recently, the bones of a woman murdered 9,000 years ago had come to life.

The book at hand gives us several of the supporting players we have become familiar with in Connelly's works: Bosch's police supervisor/enemy Irvin Irving, and the detective's partners/former partners Kiz Rider and Jerry Edgar. The author also pulls one of his favorite little maneuvers here, finding a way to mention another of his works,The Closers, which, while not yet written, was probably already outlined: he cleverly does that by bringing in the popular television show The Closer - Season 1 [DVD], which has actually nothing to do with his book of the same name. CITY also shows the excellent narrative, descriptive, and dialogue writing that are characteristic of Connelly, and is informed by his deep, accurate knowledge of police work, it too is written with great knowledge of, and love for, Los Angeles, the author's adopted home town. (You could pretty much use his works instead of a road map). In this book, the writer describes Venice, California, (the funky beach city adjacent to Santa Monica) with such poetry and power, that I've remembered his descriptions since my first reading of it-- I had to go and get a good look at the place on one of my trips to the far coast. And, surely, the book follows in the footsteps of earlier outstanding hardboiled Los Angeles authors Raymond Chandler and Ross Macdonald, but adds the further ingredients of a police procedural. Finally, Connelly explicates his love of jazz as he goes.

And the writing he gives us, as for example, he explains the book's title:
"Kohl ... was making notations on a piece of paper with a grid already printed on it.... At the top of the page she had written `City of Bones.' .... `Why do you call it that?'....'Because we're setting out the streets and the blocks of what will become a city to us,'....'At least while we're working here it will feel like it. Our little city.' Bosch nodded. `In every murder is the tale of a city,' he said. ... `Who said that?' `I don't know. Somebody did.'" I've looked that reference up; it's to a poet I'm not familiar with.

Shortly afterward, he discusses his time as a "tunnel rat," working the dangerous tunnels of the Vietnam War, and explains the title of a book yet to be written. Lost Light that he also probably already had in outline:
"Lost light. We called it lost light. We never knew where it came from. But it was down there. Like smoke hanging in the dark. Some people said it wasn't light, that it was the ghosts of everybody who died in those things. From both sides."

Many of Connelly's Bosch, and Lincoln Lawyer series have been New York Times best sellers, as have some of his recent standalones such as The Scarecrow. Crime Beat: A Decade of Covering Cops and Killers, a non-fiction collection of his journalism, was also a New York Times bestseller. Personally, I consider this to be one of the finest of the Bosch series; Connelly is writing at his most powerful, and Bosch's tenderness of feeling and empathy towards the young boy and his sad, short life, are palpable.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A gripping, thought provoking, character driven thriller! Above all a great read, 11 Sept. 2008
By 
Mr. D. J. Sutton "reader-review" (reader-review) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: City Of Bones (Paperback)
I can't quite understand why this book is being critisised by many because it's just a fantastic book overall. Detective Harry Bosch gets another outing in city of bones and fans of all Michael Conelly's other novels will not be dissapointed. This is a solid murder mystery and differs in style from his previous books. It is explained in more detail how a murder is solved and this is the real strength of the book, as it is what draws you in and makes the book intriging, along with the realistic and beleivable characters. Indeed you shall find yourself lost in the dark and gritty world of Harry Bosch. There is also a love interest which adds more depth and some nice references to Harry's past and it gives you a better understanding of his character and his journey and his mission in life. The story is dark and disturbing, but it can also be light an funny in places so its not too depressing. In fact there is a perfect balance between the two and this makes it a compelling and page turning read. There are also plenty of twists along the way and i also like how Connelly is straight to the point and doesn't waste anytime with pointless discription. I just love his overall writing style and this is probably one of the quickest books i have ever read. The ending is drawn out a little and there's no real action or fast paced conclusion, but it is still satisfying enough. I highly recommned this book and although it may not be the best of the bunch it is still a fine example of crime writing and a brilliant read to anyone who enjoys fast paced, murder mystery thrillers.
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City Of Bones
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