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Book Talk: Connelly, ‘Desert Star’

Ever since I read my first Michael Connelly novel, I have bought his most recent publication. Connelly’s name is on a fairly short list of the best contemporary story tellers and writers. His first best-seller, “The Void Moon,” featured Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch, who — unlike most protagonists — has aged as the years have gone by.

In “Desert Star” (2022, 388 pages in hardback format), Harry appears to be in his final retirement. He left the LAPD in Connelly’s “The Wrong Side of Goodbye” (2016), only to become a private eye and then to unite with Reneé Ballard in her debut novel, “The Late Show” (2017). The fact is that Harry is simply too good a character to be discarded. And this is evident in “Desert Star” where, as a volunteer, he helps Reneé resurrect the open and unsolved (OU), aka “cold case,” division.

While Harry and Reneé are old buddies, Harry has an ulterior purpose for getting involved. When he was a cop, he investigated the murder of the Gallagher family, both parents and their two children mercilessly killed and dumped in a hole in the desert, a desolate place where, nonetheless, a small yellow flower known as a desert star thrives. Harry sees the new division as his chance to bring justice to the dead family.



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