The Black Box
May 1992, and after four LAPD officers are acquitted following the savage beating of Rodney King, Los Angeles is ablaze. As looting and burning take over the city, law and order are swept away in a tidal wave of violence. But under threat of their lives, homicide detectives like Harry Bosch are still stubbornly trying to do their job. With no effective police presence on the streets, murder just got a whole lot easier - and investigating them a whole lot harder.
When Harry finds the body of a female journalist in an alley, he is forced to hand over the case to the Riot Crimes Task Force, knowing that it will never be solved.
Twenty years later, new evidence confirms her death was not a case of random violence but something much more personal. This time Harry is determined that the killer isn't going to escape - even if it means stepping back into the darkest days of the city he loves . . .
Bestseller Connelly's excellent 18th Harry Bosch novel (after 2011's The Drop) opens in 1992, a few days after the acquittal of the cops who beat up Rodney King incited an eruption of violence in Los Angeles ("Flames from a thousand fires reflected like the devil dancing in the dark sky"). In a South-Central alley, Bosch and his partner, Jerry Edgar, briefly examine the body of a Danish photojournalist, Anneke Jespersen, who's been shot dead. There's not enough time or police will power to enable Bosch to pursue the case though he does retrieve a single spent 9mm brass shell casing. Twenty years later, while working cold cases in the LAPD's Open-Unsolved Unit, Bosch gets a second chance to answer for Jespersen. Contemporary forensic technology connects the shell casing to a gun and to the first Iraq war. The tenacious detective finds himself caught in a maelstrom of departmental politics and personal danger as he searches for the "black box" of the title ("a piece of evidence, a person, a positioning of fact that brought a certain understanding and helped explain what happened and why"). Connelly draws on all his resources his thorough knowledge of police work, his ability to fashion a complex tapestry of plot, and his ever deepening characterization of Bosch to craft a mystery thriller sure to enthrall fans and newcomers alike.