Synopses & Reviews
He walked away from the job three years ago. But Harry Bosch cannot resist the call to join the elite Open/Unsolved Unit. His mission: solve murders whose investigations were flawed, stalled, or abandoned to L.A.'s tides of crime. With some people openly rooting for his failure, Harry catches the case of a teenager dragged off to her death on Oat Mountain, and traces the DNA on the murder weapon to a small-time criminal.
But something bigger and darker beckons, and Harry must battle to fit all the pieces together. Shaking cages and rattling ghosts, he will push the rules to the limit and expose the kind of truth that shatters lives, ends careers, and keeps the dead whispering in the night...
"LAPD detective Harry Bosch, hero of last year's The Narrows
and other Connelly thrillers, is back on the force after a two-year retirement. Assigned to the Open Unsolved (cold cases) unit and teamed with former partner Kiz Rider, Harry's first case back involves the killing of a high school girl 17 years before, reopened because of a DNA match to blood found on the murder gun. That premise could be a formula for a routine outing, but not with Connelly. Nor does the author rely on violent action to propel his story; there's next to none. In Connelly/Bosch's world, character, context and procedure are what count, and once again the author proves a master at all. The blood on the gun belongs to a local lowlife white supremacist, Roland Mackey; the victim had a black father and a white mother. But the blood indicates only that Mackey had possession of the gun, so how to pin him to the crime? Connelly meticulously leads the reader along with Bosch and Rider as they explore the links to Mackey and along the way connect the initial investigation of the crime to a police conspiracy. Most striking of all, in developments that give this novel astonishing moral force, the pair explore the 'ripples' of the long ago crime, how it has destroyed the young girl's family leaving the mother trapped in the past and plunging the father into a nightmare of homelessness and drink and how it drives Rider, and especially Bosch, into deeper understanding of their own purposes in life. Connelly comes as close as anyone to being today's Dostoyevsky of crime literature, and this is one of his finest novels to date, a likely candidate not only for book award nominations but for major bestsellerdom. Agent, Phillip Spitzer. Major ad/promo; 11-city author tour.
" Publishers Weekly
(Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Fans and newcomers alike will love seeing Bosch back in uniform, stirring up trouble." Library Journal
"Connelly sets up a great premise here...and he makes the most of it....Give Connelly credit for having the courage to tinker with one of the richest characters in the genre." Booklist (Starred Review)
"Connelly is one of the most consistently excellent authors in current-day crime fiction: his characters, particularly the world-weary Bosch, are complex and appealing; his stories fast-paced, edgy and believable." BookPage
"Connelly...is the real thing: an immensely skilled entertainer who has mastered the requirements and expectations of his genre but also from time to time rises above them....Connelly writes grown-up novels that...remind us that the place to look for serious American fiction is not in the schools of creative writing but out there in the real world." Jonathan Yardley, The Washington Post
"Like James Ellroy and John Fante, both of whose work is referred to here, Mr. Connelly continues to make his doomy, secretive Los Angeles a living, breathing character in his stories." Janet Maslin, The New York Times
"The Closers finds both Bosch and Connelly on the top of their game." CrimeSpree Magazine
"The Closers is a worthy if not especially noteworthy entry in the Bosch saga. Average Connelly is far better than average." Houston Chronicle
"[I]n the absence of a feral Poet-like serial killer to keep things exciting, this plodding expedition never really takes off. (Grade: B-)" Entertainment Weekly
"Bosch, after two years of retirement, finds himself rusty in certain areas; his lack of finesse with the cell phone more than once threatens to blow his cover. But he proves his detective skills are still sharp, pursuing the Verloren case with a dogged, moral purpose. Connelly, too, is at the top of his game, and the latest installment of the Bosch saga comes with thrills, twists to spare, and a deeply satisfying conclusion." Anna Godbersen, Esquire
(read the entire Esquire review
In Los Angeles in 1988, a 16-year-old girl was found dead with a single gunshot wound to the chest. Although detectives on the case found clues that pointed toward murder, no one was ever charged. Detective Harry Bosch, newly returned to the LAPD with the job of closing unsolved cases, gets the report of a new DNA match that makes the case very much alive again. A white supremacist with close ties to the LAPD becomes a suspect but Bosch and his partner, Kizmin Rider, can't take a step without threatening higher-ups in the department. And the case turns out to be anything but cold. Everywhere he probes, Bosch finds hot grief, hot rage, and a bottomless well of treachery and danger.
The death of a teenage girl almost two decades ago comes back to haunt all of L.A. and detective Harry Bosch in this spellbinding new thriller from New York Times bestselling author Michael Connelly.
About the Author
Michael Connelly is a former journalist and has won every major prize for crime fiction. He lives in Florida.
Reading Group Guide
1. Welcome Back Roy
In Michael Connelly's novel, The Closers
, Harry Bosch rejoins the ranks of the LAPD after three years in retirement. Harry has a hard time suppressing his excitement at being back. At one point, he says to his partner, Kizmin Rider, "The point is I need the gun. I need the badge. Otherwise I'm out of balance. I need all of this." Why do you think Harry needs to be a cop?
2. The Oldest Living Boot
The new chief of police welcomes Harry back but at the same time he warns him that he is on probation. Harry can't screw up or he'll be out. Later, Harry has a run in with an old adversary, Deputy Chief Irvin Irving, who also welcomes him back with a warning, calling him "a retread." So Harry has to prove himself all over again while watching his back. What do you think Harry's reputation is within the LAPD? What does Irving think of Harry?
3. Forget Closure
Harry's new boss, Abel Pratt, warns him that closing cases is not the same thing as closure. He warns that there is no such thing as closurethat all the police can do is provide answers. Do you agree with that? Can there ever be closure for the victims of crime? Is justice the same thing as closure? How about revenge?
4. The Ripples
The Closers focuses on the toll of violence over time. What effect did Becky Verloren's murder have on her mother and father? Can you think of other examples from the book that show the ripples of crime?
5. High Jingo
Throughout the book, Kizmin Rider fears that Harry's actions will somehow backfire and hurt the chief. Do you think Kiz was dedicated to solving the case or more concerned about helping the chief? In the end, Harry thinks he was set up by the chief to bring Irving down. Is Kiz implicated in that?
6. The City Of Angels
"It was a city full of haves and have nots, movie stars and extras, drivers and the driven, predators and prey." Michael Connelly's novels are, in a way, a love letter to Los Angeles. They describe the good and the bad, the highs and the lows, of this "destination city." How does he reflect that in Harry Bosch's take on the city?
7. A Black Hole
Think about Robert Verloren's actions at the end of the book. Do the terms justice, satisfaction, or closure apply in any way? Why do you think Harry felt guilty about Robert Verloren?
8. One Coming, One Going
Do you think Irving will just walk away? How can he get back at Harry and the chief?
9. Red Herrings
A red herring is defined as something that draws attention away from the central issue. In crime fiction, a red herring is often put there to fool or distract you. Were you fooled by anything in The Closers? Were you surprised by the killer's identity?