Why Detective Harry Bosch is the Batman of LA ~ Everybody Counts or Nobody Counts
Hieronymus Bosch hunts down criminals in the darkness of Los Angeles. Named after one the most morbid and complex painters in history, he goes by Harry. Orphaned as a child when his mother, a prostitute in Hollywood, was murdered and her case left unsolved, Harry carries both a heart-wrenching amount of empathy for victims and an underlying anger. As a Vietnam veteran, he “holds fast” to the idea of justice and he will break rules to get it. Harry is a dark knight, perhaps the darkest. His vice- an addiction to solving murders and delivering justice. He relentlessly works cases, pushes the limits, squeezes suspects and bribes colleagues for fast results.
Harry Bosch is described as a “man on a mission” and an “avenging angel” (A Darkness more than Night). But he simply thinks of himself as more of a loner; the “last coyote”, one of a dying breed of policemen who work for justice, not a paycheck (The Last Coyote).
Each novel is a gripping investigation, bringing us along as Harry works in the shadows, keeping leads and suspicions to himself.
There’s a reason Michael Connelly is one of Stephen King’s favorite authors. He reaches out and grabs the reader with a book’s very first sentence and doesn’t let go. Connelly has the uncanny knack for leaving one stunned, staring at the last page while contemplating a swift, last minute, mind blowing twist.
Connelly has created my favorite book character. I will forever appreciate the decades of time and heart he has put into Harry Bosch. We get to see Harry through the ups and downs of his extensive career as a homicide detective. He is the quintessential good guy/bad guy. The hero who fights for justice- everybody counts or nobody counts.
The books as a collective get all of the stars. There’s a reason this series is my favorite. I have read and reread and listened to them so often, they are like familiar friends. I would be remiss not to mention that this is my husband’s favorite series as well!
The Harry Bosch Series:
Books in order:
The Black Echo (1992)
The Black Ice (1993)
The Concrete Blonde (1994)
The Last Coyote (1995)
Trunk Music (1997)
Angels Flight (1999)
A Darkness More Than Night (2001)
City Of Bones (2002)
Lost Light (2003)
The Narrows (2004)
The Closers (2005)
Echo Park (2006)
The Overlook (2007)
Nine Dragons (2009)
The Drop (2011)
The Black Box (2012)
The Burning Room (2014)
The Crossing (2015)
The Wrong Side Of Goodbye (2016)
Two Kinds Of Truth (2017)
Dark Sacred Night (2018)
The Night Fire (2019)
The Dark Hours (2021)
Harry also makes appearances in the following books:
The Brass Verdict (2008)
The Reversal (2010)
The Fifth Witness (2011)
The Gods of Guilt (2013)
The Law Of Innocence (2020)
LA has become familiar to me simply by consuming his work. Echo Park, Mulholland Drive, Cahuenga Pass, Hollywood, Van Nyes and many more iconic locations feature prominently in Connelly’s work. This Los Angeles Times article showcases some of these hot spots, including some of Bosch’s favorite food haunts.
We stayed at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel (the one from Pretty Woman!) because it was also a birthday trip and I was treated to a day on Rodeo Drive by my sweet husband.
The LA food scene is present and thriving in these books. I was so excited to belly up to the bar at Dan Tanas, sip my martini at Musso & Frank’s and eat my pancakes Harry Bosch style at Dupars (syrup on the plate first!). There were so many other places I wanted to hit up but a girl can only eat so much.
As someone who is often disappointed by book adaptations, especially ones that don’t follow the story line, BOSCH is a surprisingly well thought out and creative adaptation.
The Amazon Prime series takes the books and rearranges them into a thrilling story that is familiar and yet new to Connelly fans. For example, the first season is a nod to City of Bones, Echo Park and The Concrete Blonde.
While Titus Williver is not at all how I physically picture Bosch, he portrays our hero’s personality perfectly.
As much as I didn’t want the show to come to an end, I highly respect how they wrapped it up.