Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Revisiting the scene of the crime: Harry Bosch #2

The Black Ice (Harry Bosch, #2)Bosch gets wind of a fellow officers alleged suicide and isn’t happy about being left out of the loop. On call on the night of the tragedy, his superiors bypass Bosch in favour of expediting the investigation. Naturally this doesn’t sit well with the lone wolf lawmen and he quickly embeds himself in the thick of it; showing up at the crime scene and assuming next of kin duties. Shortly he’s assigned a handful of murder cases to solve in order to boost Hollywood Division’s stats, little did he know, a couple of those cases would tie in with the suicide.

The second Harry Bosch book lacks the same seedy atmosphere of the Hollywood underbelly as THE BLACK ECHO. Additionally, the way Bosch forces himself into the case didn’t set all that well with me – voluntary jumping into a case that’s not supported by his superiors, nor part of his caseload felt a little too farfetched. I get that Bosch is headstrong and determined but this was almost Spillane-like; finding cases rather than cases finding. As the story progresses it makes sense for Bosch to be on the case(s), I would’ve liked more rationale at the beginning of the novel to justify his actions.

THE BLACK ICE is all about drugs, cross boarder distribution, corrupt Mexican cops and deadly cartels with a few nice twists thrown in to keep the reader guessing. As you’d expect the characters are all well written and realistic. Interestingly I didn’t recall Bosch being such a lady killer; here he manages a couple more notches under his belt.
As a reread, THE BLACK ICE (1993) ages well with the procedural aspects and PI-like persona relevant in today’s modern crime fiction. I look forward to continuing the cases that comprise this series.
You can read my review of first Harry Bosch book THE BLACKECHO here.

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