About Me

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Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada
I am a lawyer in Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada who enjoys reading, especially mysteries. Since 2000 I have been writing personal book reviews. This blog includes my reviews, information on and interviews with authors and descriptions of mystery bookstores I have visited. I strive to review all Saskatchewan mysteries. Other Canadian mysteries are listed under the Rest of Canada. As a lawyer I am always interested in legal mysteries. I have a separate page for legal mysteries. Occasionally my reviews of legal mysteries comment on the legal reality of the mystery. You can follow the progression of my favourite authors with up to 15 reviews. Each year I select my favourites in "Bill's Best of ----". As well as current reviews I am posting reviews from 2000 to 2011. Below my most recent couple of posts are the posts of Saskatchewan mysteries I have reviewed alphabetically by author. If you only want a sentence or two description of the book and my recommendation when deciding whether to read the book look at the bold portion of the review. If you would like to email me the link to my email is on the profile page.

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Two Kinds of Truth by Michael Connelly

(4. – 934.) Two Kinds of Truth by Michael Connelly – I decided to write about what I love and what makes me unhappy and the contradictions in Connelly’s books as I read Two Kinds of Truth.

Harry’s new office as a member of the San Fernando police reflects Connelly’s skill in creating unique settings:

Bosch was where he was at the start of most weeks: sitting at his makeshift desk, a wooden door he had borrowed from the Public Works yard and placed across two stacks of file boxes.

His desk is in a jail cell:

…. the former cell now fitted with steel shelves containing case files. There was a long communal bench left over from the eell’s previous existence as a drunk tank.

Connelly challenges Bosch’s image of himself in the context of his case history. Over his career he has often dealt with cold cases in which he has searched old files for a piece of information overlooked or a witness either missed or not properly interviewed or applying new forensic techniques.

Now a small semen stain has been found in clothing from a murder victim, Danielle Skylar. It is from a violent sex offender and murderer, Lucas John Olmer. He is not the man, Preston Borders, whom Bosch had identified as the killer and was convicted of Skylar’s death. Has Bosch made a mistake?

Being a perfectionist Bosch is sure, as always, he never made a mistake. Connelly creates a high standard of expectation for Bosch by making him a perfectionist. As no one in real life is perfect I find it fascinating to wonder as I read if Connelly will show Bosch to be human and err or find a way to explain the inexplicable – how did Olmer’s DNA end up on clothing in a sealed box where Bosch’s signature on the tape sealing the box looks to be untampered.

Connelly does not provide easy cases for Bosch to remain perfect. You can be perfect if you do not take up the challenge of difficult cases. No real life trial lawyer wins them all unless the lawyer declines to take tough cases to trial.

Connelly brings in unusual law enforcement issues credibly. In Two Kinds of Truth it is the Health Quality Investigation Unit at the California Department of Consumer Affairs. They investigate with regard to the over prescription and unlawful prescription of drugs.

I love how Connelly will bring back characters from earlier books, often in a new position. Here uses the Unit as a means to have Bosch's old partner, Jerry Edgar, return as an investigator for the Health Quality Investigation Unit.

Connelly finds creative ways in plots for Bosch as he ages to both challenge the stereotypes of a senior citizen either being stuck in the office or engaged in implausibly physical feats. Here Bosch goes undercover as a pill shill – an addict who goes from shady doctors with prescriptions for opioids to shady pharmacies to get the bills – for a criminal enterprise. He is perfect candidate for the operation as he is a senior and active police officer. His age creates less suspicion in the gang that he is a plant. The process of going undercover was unconvincing in its briefness but Bosch has credible dangerous experiences undercover. At the same time Bosch will mix it up with the bad guys. There is a confrontation which is physical and believable.

Intentional or not I appreciate that Connelly has written books since the Bosch T.V. series started that re-affirm Titus Welliver, the T.V. Bosch, as my mental image of the book Bosch.

At the same time as I greatly enjoy the books I regret some tendencies in recent books in the series. I have also found interesting Connelly's use of contradictions in Bosch's actions. I will explore those issues in my next post.
Connelly, Michael – (2000) - Void Moon; (2001) - A Darkness More than Night; (2001) - The Concrete Blonde (Third best fiction of 2001); (2002) - Blood Work (The Best);  (2002) - City of Bones; (2003) - Lost Light; (2004) - The Narrows; (2005) - The Closers (Tied for 3rd best fiction of 2005); (2005) - The Lincoln Lawyer; (2007) - Echo Park; (2007) - The Overlook; (2008) - The Brass Verdict; (2009) – The Scarecrow; (2009) – Nine Dragons; (2011) - The Reversal; (2011) - The Fifth Witness; (2012) - The Drop; (2012) - Black Echo; (2012) - Harry Bosch: The First 20 Years; (2012) - The Black Box; (2014) - The Gods of Guilt; (2014) - The Bloody Flag Move is Sleazy and Unethical; (2015) - The Burning Room; (2015) - Everybody Counts or Nobody Counts; (2016) - The Crossing; (2016) - Lawyers and Police Shifting Sides; (2017) - The Wrong Side of Goodbye and A Famous Holograph Will; (2017) - Bosch - T.V. - Season One and Titus Welliver as Harry Bosch; Hardcover


  1. Well, I enjoyed this book very much, thought it a good way to end my 2017 reading. And it helped get me through a tough family crisis.

    I'm sure not everything is perfect in Bosch/Haller world. I enjoyed the case bringing in Mickey Haller, as a fan of legal mysteries. I always enjoy the courtroom scenes and dialogue.

    I was pleased with the book and a smile of contentment, like a cat's after drinking a bowl of cream, was on my face. All wrapped up, I thought. And on to another year of Bosch, Haller and hopefully, Renee Ballard.

    Connelly really is at the top of his game now.

    1. Kathy D.: Thanks for the comment. I am sorry you had a difficult personal issue. I enjoyed the book. I have yet to read the book with Renee Ballard. Maybe later this year.

  2. I agree with you, Bill, about Connelly's interesting way of bringing back former characters in new roles. He's done that in a few cases, and I like it. It's realistic if you think about it. People do change jobs, move on to new things, and the like. Along with that, I like the way Bosch has had different jobs through the years as his career has changed, and has he's aged.

    1. Margot: Thanks for the comment. People come in and out of most lives but not so often in crime fiction. As someone who has had the same job for 43 years I am not in a position to talk about different jobs during lifetime.