• Book Reviews

  • The Reversal by Michael Connelly

    Mickey Haller is used to sitting on the left side of the courtroom, beside whatever defendant is currently paying for his expert legal counsel, but when the prosecutor's office asks him to be independent special prosecutor in the retrial of child molester and murderer, Jason Jessup, he can't refuse. Aside from the fact that he'll be assisted by his ex-wife Maggie McPherson, for whom he still has feelings, and his newly discovered half brother, Detective Harry Bosch, Mickey Haller accepts the assignment because after 24 years in prison, the evil Jessup is about to be released on bail, pending his retrial. Haller's case is helped by Harry's discovery of the victim's sister who was an eyewitness to the abduction of 12 year old Melissa Landy. However, Haller is pitted against a skillful celebrity defense attorney who uses his media connections to try the case in the press, winning sympathy for the psychopathic Jessup. As Harry and the LAPD observe Jessup's daily and nightly activities, it becomes increasingly clear that Jessup was guilty of several murders and that another is imminent. His involvement with Jessup in the first trial makes Harry and his daughter obvious targets for the vengeful monster.

    Connelly doesn't disappoint in this latest in his Lincoln Lawyer series. Bringing the characters of Maggie McPherson and Harry Bosch onto Mickey's legal team gives the author an opportunity to develop and expand the characters' relationships to each other. By telling the story from the point of view of the prosecution Connelly is able to give a unique perspective on the influence of politics and public opinion on trial outcomes. With Haller and Harry on the same side of the law, he lets the reader cheer the triumphs of police procedure and bemoan its bureaucratic restrictions. The audio version of this book is especially compelling because of Peter Giles' narration. Connelly's text puts chapters dealing with Mickey Haller in the first person and those dealing with Harry Bosch in the third person. Giles is able to change voices so effectively and convincingly that he enhances Connelly's intended effect.

    Saving the best for last, this book's conclusion is spell-binding, heart-stopping. gut-wrenching and completely unexpected. The fast-paced and fascinating trial scenes, the suspenseful pursuit of the killer and the engaging dialogue would each make this book a winner, but the combination of the three with its stunning conclusion and expert reading make The Reversal a hauntingly unforgettable audio choice.

    The Reversal by Michael Connelly
    Read by Peter Giles
    Hachette Audio, unabridged: 11.5 hours

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