Dateline: Raleigh---Friday, October 24, 2008
I was part of a crowd of about 100 that attended a Michael Connelly talk and book signing at Quail Ridge Books.
A few of the interesting points unveiled:
* "The Brass Verdict" is Mickey's road to redemption.
* Doing Harry Bosch from Mickey’s point of view refreshed Michael’s take on Harry.
* Character is king. Main character is the driver of the car.
* Raymond Chandler, Ross Macdonald and Joseph Wambaugh are his primary influences…all wrote of LA.
* In creating Harry Bosch, he wanted an outsider with an insider’s job…attempting to meld the best of his influences. Examples: being left-handed in a right-handed world and being the lifelong product of institutions (foster homes, the military and the police force).
* As an outsider in “The Black Ice”---Harry sees he has no family.
* In the novel, Harry and Mickey are diametrically opposed, but must form mutually dependant
* He has three or four more Harry books in his mind. Harry in Vietnam, Bosch in Hong Kong with his daughter and Harry as a young cop in the 1970’s.
* Next book will feature reporter Jack McEvoy from “The Poet” in “The Scarecrow.” It is based on a true story of a serial killer of women whom was obsessed will calling Michael at the LA Times while incarcerated.
* On this book tour he is reading Dennis Lehane’s “The Given Day.” Other recommended writers: George Pelecanos, UK hard-boiled writer Denise Mina and new writer Michael Koryta (“Envy the Night”)
* Writing regret? Does your main character age in real time or not age as time moves on? Giving Harry’s birthday year as 1950 has set a time limit on how long Harry can be on the LAPD as there are not a lot of homicide detectives on the LAPD force past the age of 60.
* When I asked him if Mickey was truly going to stop practicing law as the “The Brass Verdict” suggests---with a twinkle in his eye, he said, “Remember, Harry retired from the LAPD at one time.”