Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Did Terry McCaleb annoy himself to death?

People have been telling me for years that Michael Connelly is great, but with so many old books to read and re-read I have trouble getting around to someone relatively “new.”

But a few months back I finally read the first Harry Bosch book, and then The Lincoln Lawyer, and was well and truly hooked.

When I reached what was supposed to be the seventh Bosch novel, A Darkness More than Night, I found myself in the continuing adventures of ex-fed Terry McCaleb, so I had to take time out to read Blood Work. And I liked it, of course. But McCaleb’s bumbling pal Buddy Lockridge annoyed me, and the way McCaleb reacted to Buddy annoyed me even more. But the end of the book I was hoping Buddy turned out to be the killer, so the series would be rid of him.

No such luck. Buddy was back for A Darkness More than Night, more annoying than ever, causing McCaleb to be more annoying. And McCaleb started annoying his wife by taking on a new case, and her annoyance quickly became annoying. And then, most annoying of all, McCaleb jumped to the huge conclusion that Harry Bosch was the murderer.

Still, the mystery was well-handled, and the use of Hieronymus Bosch’s painting was genius, and once McCaleb saw the error of his ways, it seemed he was on the road to redemption. But at the end of the book he managed to kick my annoyance up another notch.

Well. Like I said, I’m hooked, and have no choice but to read all of Connelly’s books. So it was with dread in my heart that I checked to see if there was a third entry in the McCaleb series. And hallelujah! I learned that McCaleb made his next appearance as a murder victim in a Bosch book.

So I’m posing the question: Did Terry McCaleb annoy himself to death? I'm guessing that other readers felt the same way I did, and Connelly appeased us by turning a guy dust jacket copy had called one of his “most popular characters” into a corpse.


Anonymous said...

No, Clint Eastwood did him in. Connelly was so ticked off by Eastwood's film of BLOODWORK he decided to kill the character off.

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