The thing that counts most for me when it comes to crime fiction is logical progression. I mean I go on about logic and reasoning throughout this website of course. I like to think I am pursuing logic rather than I am a master of it so I am not looking for perfection in anyone else. What I mean is in the bizarre and brutal world of criminals you will be hard pressed to find cold logic. What you should be able to find in the story, however, are characters acting in a way that fits the character. You should be able to find descriptions of events and places that make sense and people’s actions that fit the situation.
In the past I have read about hardened ex soldiers that apparently don’t understand violence, hardened cops that refer to British police areas as ‘Precincts’ and writers that don’t understand the difference between a shotgun pellet and a 9mm bullet. All small details that will see me throw a book into the charity pile after a few pages.
You won’t get that feeling from the novels that Michael Connelly writes. He knows the underworld, he knows cops and he can certainly write. Almost as important he knows how to decorate his work so it becomes a living picture in your mind from page to page.
Connolly had his first book published in 1992. He is still writing now and he is one of the few writers that I try and catch soon after a new book comes out. My favourite characters of his are Harry Bosch, a long running LA detective and Mickey Haller, a shrewd LA lawyer. One tries to put villains away and the other tries to keep them out. Most of the time they stay in their own novels, but they have a neat theme of connection in that they are half brothers.
If I was to point you to favourite books as good places to start reading Michael Connolly’s work I guess I would suggest you go for the below.
The Lincoln Lawyer