Monday, April 30, 2012

The Scarecrow

"The Scarecrow" (419 pages) by Michael Connelly was yet another book I picked up from my mother by an author I've never read. Though the book was a sequel of sorts, at least for the main character in the story, I was pleasantly surprised by the work. From Goodreads:

"Forced out of the Los Angeles Times amid the latest budget cuts, newspaperman Jack McEvoy decides to go out with a bang, using his final days at the paper to write the definitive murder story of his career.

He focuses on Alonzo Winslow, a 16-year-old drug dealer in jail after confessing to a brutal murder. But as he delves into the story, Jack realizes that Winslow's so-called confession is bogus. The kid might actually be innocent.

Jack is soon running with his biggest story since The Poet made his career years ago. He is tracking a killer who operates completely below police radar--and with perfect knowledge of any move against him. Including Jack's."

"The Scarecrow" follows crime beat reporter Jack McEvoy who was featured one other time in Connelly's "The Poet," a book I guess I'm going to have to track down now. The story kicks off with a bang and at a fast pace following Jack's investigation into a homicide, which turns into something more sinister than just one random act of violence in L.A. Through some luck and research Jack becomes involved in a story that eventually threatens his very life and those he cares about.

I really enjoyed Connelly's writing style, most notably the pacing and tension of the story. Though some of the novel was a bit contrived and convenient I found myself tearing through the book to see where Jack's investigation would take him next. The only other small complaint I have is with the character "the Scarecrow." A little more fleshing out of this key person in the story would have been appreciated.

Recommended, especially for fans of mysteries and/or thriller.

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