Los Angeles, California
November 23, 2015
(Originally posted in 2010 and updated November 2015)
I rarely read mystery novels, with one major exception- those written by bestselling author, Michael Connelly.
Prior to 2003, I had never heard of him.
My first awareness of Connelly’s writings came in 2003, post-publication of Black Dahlia Avenger, when the two of us were scheduled to speak at the 2003 Bouchercon Convention in Las Vegas.
That same year, Michael had been nominated as president of the Mystery Writers of America and would preside over the upcoming Edgar Awards in NYC. (My first book, Black Dahlia Avenger, was one of the six nominees in the running for an Edgar Award in the True Fact category.)
Based on those two imminent meetings with Connelly, I figured the least I could do was read one of his books. But, which one? I threw a dart and it landed on–The Last Coyote.
I picked up a copy and read it non-stop. I WAS HOOKED.
I went back and began reading his novels chronologically and as of this writing (2010) I am just completing his 14th novel, The Brass Verdict and find myself a bit depressed at the prospect that there is only a handful remaining. Then what do I do? (It is now 2015 and I have read all of his novels, including his just published THE CROSSING.)
Harry Bosch- An Identity Crisis?
In my opinion, Michael Connelly is the best police procedural writer on the planet. He’s got it down to near perfection. His character Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch is my hero. He’s an “out-of-the-box,” thinking detective, who plays it straight, has a high solve rate, and gets it right most of the time, but occasionally screws up. What’s not to love?
But, I have to admit; Connelly has created a character whose biography so closely mimics my own on so many levels that I cannot help but IDENTIFY with Harry.
As you review the below comparisons, keep in mind while Connelly has publicly indicated that Harry Bosch “is a composite of several real-life individuals” (along with some fictional characteristics of his own) –I am not one of those individuals.
To my knowledge, Connelly, while giving my book one of my favorite “author blurbs” still, did not know me, and it is doubtful he had ever heard of me before the publication of my book in 2003. I retired from LAPD in 1986 after nearly 24-years of service. Connelly didn’t publish his first novel, The Black Echo, until 1992.
Listed below are a few of the reasons why I have a bit of an identity crisis with my good friend–Detective Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch. Harry will tell you, “There are no coincidences.”
Steve would, for the most part, AGREE. So, for the moment, let’s just call these: “SYNCHRONICITIES.”
Let’s add one more that I missed:
HB: Had a sibling that he named Mattie.
SH: Had a sibling that he named Mattie.
April 6, 2016 Update from a reader, Brian Weatherby, who made the following observations:
Add this to your similarities between Harry Bosch and yourself:
Both discovered lapd cover up of murder and likely serial murder relating to his family decades after the fact.
Bosch: his mother’s likely killer was a drug informant that had an “untouchable” status and was relocated.
George had a de facto untouchable status and got out of the country before the DA caught him.”
Michael Connelly’s review of my book, Black Dahlia Avenger: A Genius for Murder (2003)
My Amazon review of Michael’s just published (2015) Harry Bosch novel, THE CROSSING.