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Abandoned by Booklikes

Government drone by day and book lover and geek girl by night!

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What's In the Box?

The Black Box - Michael Connelly

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I am so going to need someone to hold Bosch down one of these days and say going off to investigate solo has never worked out well for him. Bosch runs afoul of another person who is in charge of the Open/Unsolved unit he is back on who is out to get Bosch tossed. And due to Bosch ticking off the Chief of Police (seriously at this point how does Bosch have a job) he may be getting kicked after the events of this book. You don't know since that is left up in the air. I do have to say that it's getting a little old that Bosch is always the only person in the world to care about victims. If anything, I say his single minded obsession ends up getting everyone else around him killed. And for such a smart guy he keeps getting into it with people in power. He literally has no one to keep him safe anymore so I am just wondering about the long-game with this character.


It's been a year since the events in "The Drop" which gets referenced throughout this book. After the events of the case involving Irving's son that Bosch investigated, we find out that Irving did not get re-elected to the City Council. A more pro-police person won the seat. Kiz and Bosch have not spoken after he finds out she used him to set up Irving. Kiz is now a captain somewhere and the Chief is struggling to hold onto his job. The last thing puzzles me since it seemed like based on the previous books the Chief was well liked. But now he's a politician according to Bosch so that makes him a not okay guy. Bosch seems to have few friends and is still dating a woman from the last book he met named Dr. Hannah Stone.


Bosch investigates a cold case involving a victim that he and his former partner J. Edgar called Snow White. The victim was found shot to death during the LA riots and many thought she was just in the wrong time and place. However, Bosch believes a gun that was used was involved in several other gang related homicides and starts trying to track down who owned the gun first. We have Bosch exploring the world of gangs in LA and also how this all tracks back to the Iraq War (Desert Storm).


This is typical Bosch going blundering around and acting like a jerk to a ton of people. There's also a weird scene when Bosch is reprimanded for calling someone by their last name and he realizes he may have been insulting his partner David Chu for years by calling him Chu, and then proceeds to keep calling him David that was just awkward to even read about. Lord Bosch needs to do something besides listen to jazz. Maybe read a book on how to interact with others or something. His romance is pretty boring and part of me wonders why he is even with Hannah Stone. At this point he has been dating her for at least a year. He knows about her son and even gets into some trouble because of him. I am surprised he didn't cut his losses and break up with her. I guess we will see what goes down between them in the next book.


Bosch's daughter Maddie is now 15 or 16. I can't even remember. She is in this book more than previous books though so that's one positive step forward with her character. However, I am going to complain that I found most of the things that Connelly included about her to just be padding the novel. We go off with Maddie and Bosch at one point where he takes her to a simulator that the police use to train. And Maddie is apparently the best shot ever and also has better critical thinking than the average person. So yeah, we are setting her up to be a special snowflake. Sigh. I heard from a fan that he thinks that the Bosch novels are ultimately going to focus on Maddie. I don't know if I will continue with the series if they do. I ultimately find nothing about her compelling.


There's really no one else in this book besides Bosch, Maddie, some references to Chu (they barely interact), Hannah Stone, and Bosch's new boss and the Chief of Police. Bosch takes one of the guys from the unit into his confidence, but once again Bosch can't listen to anyone giving him rational advice so that character gave me no joy. He's not talking to Kiz, J. Edgar, his other two partners are dead. Bah.

I have to say I ultimately found this case boring. Bosch is focused on this case because reasons. I called BS on the whole story-line (we find out who murdered the victim and why) since it was such a mess with plot holes galore that I kind of gave up trying to make it make sense. I also laughed when it looks like Bosch is finally going to meet his maker, and then someone randomly shows up to get him out of trouble. I mean hello plot contrivance.


In the end I just found the book all over the place.