The Black Echo  - Michael Connelly, Dick Hill

This book, written to be contemporary when it was first published, has the feel of film noir, reading this two decades later. Connelly inveigles the reader with his atmospheric treatment of a dark and convoluted tale. The opening tableau, a prolonged and very detailed introduction to the main character, Harry Bosch, working a crime scene, is pure fish bait; once you bite, you're hooked for the rest of the story.

The Black Echo is chock-full of plot twists and surprises, and yet the author is able to maintain the continuity and integrity of the characters and their motivations. It's almost where it's too much, but not quite. Quite a feat for a first effort.

The narration was also performed pleasingly though at first I thought the lead character was a man in his fifties or sixties because of the slight rasp in the narrator's voice. Similarly, I first thought the female lead character was much older. But after a couple of hours, I got used to the voices and settled down to enjoying the tale-telling.

Overall, an engaging read. Am jumping right onto the next one in the series, so it seems I am still wanting for more.