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The Brass Verdict: A Novel, by Michael Connelly (Read by Peter Giles)

Micky Haller, emerging from a self-imposed hiatus from his career as a defense attorney, suddenly finds that instead of zero cases, he has 31. When an associate, Vincent, is murdered, Haller is informed that as Vincent's heir, he now has 31 clients to defend. The most high-profile client with the most urgent need is Walter Elliott, a multimillionaire Hollywood producer who has been accused of killing his wife and her lover. Calling together his team of case manager, Lorna, and investigator, Cisco, Micky begins scouring Vincent's files, hoping to prepare successful defense strategies for his clients and at the same time, prevent his own murder. One of the detectives investigating Vincent's murder is a favorite Connelly character, Harry Bosch. As they trade information, the cat and mouse game between Haller and Bosch morphs into an adagio dance between the savvy detective and attorney which leads to a stunning conclusion. At the book's end, multiple surprises are disclosed, with revelations erupting like the finale in a Fourth of July fireworks display.

What could be better than a Connelly novel with the legendary Detective Harry Bosch? How about a Connelly novel with Bosch for the prosecution and The Lincoln Lawyer, Micky Haller, for the defense? Both Bosch and Haller are clever, skillful, imaginative, thorough and ethical. That makes these them both the "good guys" in this unique murder thriller. Haller and Bosch, though opposing forces in the legal system, share a commitment to justice that guides their actions and their relationships with their peers. The study in opposites and similarities even extends to their homes. At one point, Bosch points out that while they live on mountainsides on opposite sides of the valley, they share a spectacular view of the city between them.

Besides being an engaging mystery with suspense and clever plot twists, this book is a thought-provoking examination of addiction and the effect it has on everyone around the addict, both during and after recovery. It also gives an insider's view of court proceedings and the legal maneuvering that sets guilty men free and makes victims of the innocent. This audio book is thoroughly entertaining, whether it's enjoyed as an engrossing murder mystery or as an introspective study of human nature.

Ruth Mormon

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