Michael Connelly's latest addition to his best-selling Harry Bosch series, The Closers, finds the somewhat shopworn detective with a new lease on life, albeit not an idyllic one. After a couple of years of trying his hand at private investigation, LAPD detective Bosch is back on the force, this time with the mission of reopening and solving cases which have been on the back burner for decades. His first task is the 1988 murder of a 16-year-old girl, initially treated as a suicide. By the time the investigating officers found conflicting evidence indicating that she was actually murdered, the trail of the killer had grown cold. Although there was some DNA evidence collected at the time, DNA "fingerprinting" was in its infancy in 1988, and nobody was ever charged with the crime. That said, if a present-day suspect can be identified, the DNA is eminently usable today. There is, after all, no statute of limitations on murder. 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. It helps (but is by no means de rigeur) to have read the earlier Bosch books in order to appreciate Connelly's ever-increasing skills as a writer, and Bosch's evolution as a human being.


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