Disclaimer – Not for LinkedIn but since blog is synced. You have the choice of not reading.
Just finished read Fair Warning by Michael Connelly. It’s the third book for lead character Jack McEvoy. Must read book if you haven’t read it still.
So while reading, I realised that the character has aged. Jack is over 50 now. That got me thinking about my favourite Michael Connelly character – Harry Bosch. He is 59 now. Was 39 in his first book. Mickey Haller would be perhaps younger.
Michael Connelly is a master writer. One of the rare ones who have stayed with the lead character for a long time across many books. Even woven in other lead characters or ones from other books. The relationship between Harry and Mickey for instance. Or Rachel Walling who appears in novels for Harry as well as Jack. For those who don’t follow Michael Connelly books or do not get as immersed as I do, they won’t get the emotion. But the ones who do, will know how it feels every time a book ends. Will there be another Harry Bosch book? What will we do when there is no Harry Bosch?! 20 years span is a long time and we tend to build a relationship with the character.
In similar vein is Jack Reacher by Lee Childs. He was 36 in his first books and over so many other books, Jack had grown older. 50+ now.
Now why is this interesting? Because the characters and I are pretty much same age. I have grown old with them. The lives so to say are intertwined and in a few instances have been quite similar. Also the nature. Whether it is the need to always do the right thing or to be anti establishment on occasions, there are similarities.
Why this post though? It’s about getting older and about making the act of getting old look good. It is not easy task. In our country, the legacy of govt jobs means we all have a retirement to look at by a certain date. That itself creates a certain behaviour. It is almost as if life comes to an end. Most people start retiring from life a few years before it actually happens. All their thinking is about where to settle, what to do, how to manage pension and stuff. In their mind, they already have.
But Harry hasn’t, jack Reacher hasn’t, Jack McEvoy hasn’t and I haven’t either. It’s lot more fun not to think of “that age”! And now with what has happened in last few months, there is no point in planning too far ahead. Plans do not work out. Also all the discussion about being under 60 or over 60, geez who wants to get old!
Over the weekend I read the new Michael Connelly book “The Reversal“. Reading of the book has led to this post.. as is obvious. Harry Bosch figures in the book… along with his half-brother Mickey Haller. Decent book but it left a lot to be desired and I will come back to it later but first… Harry Bosch.
I have read every single Harry Bosch novel in past 4 years. Have followed his life from “The Black Echo” to “9 Dragon”. Let me rephrase… not followed but lived his life. From his undying spirit to follow an investigation (no matter where it leads or who is the culprit) to his run ins with the establishment (probably a bit of me in there)… to the aspect of his personality which never lets him open up even to people who are so close to him… whether it is Eleanor Wish or Rachel Walling and not surprising enough… he never has a long-lasting relationship… they walk in and walk out of his life…
Michael Connelly’s writing style has always ensured that every Harry Bosch book is an immersive experience. Places mentioned in the book feel so familiar… the overlook on the Mullholland Drive… Farmer’s Market… Parker Center… From 40 to 60… two decades of living Harry Bosch… Going back into the book cabinet and taking the books out to read them again.. and again… and again… saying hello to Harry Bosch every time and finding something new…
Sure there are other books and characters that Michael C has etched in his books but Harry Bosch is well… Harry Bosch…
I have read books since I was 10 and that was so long back and the number of books I have read… never have I looked forward to a new book as I have for a Michael C book or rather a Harry Bosch book.
Coming back to “The Reversal”. Knowing Michael Connelly, there surely would be a reason for a lot closer interaction between Harry, Mickey and Maggie.. and the jealous Mickey when Harry and Maggie travel out of LA together. Or for Hayley (Mickey and Maggie’s daughter) and Maddie (Harry’s daughter) to come together… not to miss the appearance of Rachel Walling and her meeting Mickey… The book was a nice read but it lacked intensity… Yes it had the Harry Bosch moments of him going off on his own and chasing his train of thought and coming up trumps.. But something was amiss…I think it was the balancing act that Michael C tried.. giving equal pages to Mickey and Harry… sure didn’t work for me… Mickey sections almost felt like an interruption in the narrative and I was a little disappointed with the book.
I want a Harry Bosch book… pure unadulterated Harry Bosch with no family in it.. the crusader who will rub people the wrong way and single mindedly follow what he believes is right… wonder if it would happen… so much has changed in LAPD and he soon may retire… but one last hurrah… that one book which would make people appreciate Harry and make others wonder why they could not look deeper inside him and believe in the person he truly was..