Sunday, September 10, 2017

Live from Arizona! It's the Late Show!

Just kidding!  I'm not live, but I am in Arizona, and today my Sunday Synopsis is about a book titled The Late Show.

  The Late Show (Renée Ballard, #1)The Late Show by Michael Connelly
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Michael Connelly has written about 30 books, and I have read them all. He is one of my favorite authors. You've heard of The Lincoln Lawyer? Maybe even Harry Bosch? Love those books. But this one isn't about the lawyer or Bosch; it has a leading lady.

Renee Ballard is a detective in the Hollywood Division who works the Late Show, the graveyard shift. It was her punishment for accusing one of the other chief detectives of sexual harassment. She was in the right, but it's a man's world. Even her own partner didn't take her side.

Now she's working nights with a new partner, Jenkins, who is biding his time until retirement and who would rather be at home with his sick wife. He does the bare minimum, just enough to skate by. Ballard is more of a go-getter.

There are two cases Ballard is working on, even though neither case has been assigned to her. One is a transvestite who was beaten to shreds and left for dead. The other case is a multiple homicide, and the likely suspect is a cop. Ballard will get herself into situations that she may not be able to get out of.

I like that Connelly has started a new series (I assume it will be a series) with a female lead. I like that he is tackling tough subjects like hate crimes, gender identity, homelessness, and corruption in the police department. I like that he is able to write from a female perspective and do it well. I like that the reader learns some of Ballard's background, but not so much that there is nothing left to tell.

I didn't like... Well, there is really nothing I didn't like. There are some twists, turns, and surprises along the way. It's an edge-of-your-seat novel.  The writing style is compelling, and if you enjoyed any of his previous books (or movies or TV shows), then I'm certain you will like this one.

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