Published January 09. 2014 4:00AM
With two franchise characters, Harry Bosch and Mickey "Lincoln Lawyer" Haller, and presumably contracts and a fan base that demand new and frequent adventures from each, thriller genius Connelly seems to never want for fresh ideas - or ways to develop his heroes in real-time fashion. And so, in "The Gods of Guilt," we see an older, wiser and somewhat battered Haller. Estranged from his teenage daughter and stinging after a failed run for district attorney, Haller is going through the motions. Then a new case wakes him up: he's hired to defend a cyber-pimp accused of murdering one of his high-end call girls. Turns out, Haller knew the victim by another name and believed, years ago, he'd helped her get out of "the life" and into respectability. Wrong. Also: at one time, the victim's testimony, orchestrated by one of Haller's patented gray-area legal maneuverings, put a vicious drug cartel honcho in prison for life. Is it possible the bad guy is seeking late-game vengeance from inside? For certain, there is new information that may spring him from prison - and it seems increasingly obvious he and possibly compromised federal agents know Haller was complicit in his original sentence. Can this end well?
- RICK KOSTER