Monday, November 26, 2018

What Child Is This, A Short Story, by Rhys Bowen

Rhys Bowen is a magnificent story teller with an ability to keep a reader’s attention until she is ready to let them go. In this novella, she tells the story of Eastenders Jack and Maggie who have lost their only child, a little girl, to diphtheria. Their sad Christmas during the Blitz is without most of the holiday foods they had before the war. When their house is bombed, they have nowhere to go, so they go to the wealthy West End, believing they would be safe there. There they find an abandoned little boy, living all alone in a grand house. As the story unfolds, need, hope and good cheer give the three of them, and others they befriend along the way, an unlikely Christmas miracle.

  • Publisher: Amazon Original Stories (November 6, 2018)
  • Print Length: 49 pages
  • Publication Date: November 6, 2018
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC

The Late Show, by Michael Connelly

No writer captures angst and mystery as well as Michael Connelly. In this new series, Connelly introduces a new protagonist, Detective Renee Ballard. Like Harry Bosch, the key figure in dozens of Connelly’s previous novels, Ballard is a closed book that we get to understand only a tiny bit at a time.

An LAPD detective, expelled from the elite Robbery Homicide Division (RHD) after filing a sexual harassment complaint against her supervisory lieutenant, Ballard is now on the late shift in the Hollywood Division, called “The Late Show.” Through Ballard, Connelly ably depicts the misogyny of the old boys club mentality that still exists in the LAPD, without creating melodram

We learn that Ballard is homeless except for the two days a month she lives with her Hawaiian grandmother, Tutu, 90 miles away. The other days she sleeps at a local hotel, or in a tent on the beach after paddle boarding. The only being she lets near her heart, besides Tutu, is her dog Lola, who spends most of her nights at a dog care facility.

When a Trans woman is brutally attacked, Ballard is the only detective who cares enough to investigate, ultimately bringing the attacker to justice while almost losing her own life. Similarly, after Ballard’s former RHD partner is murdered while investigating a shocking six person massacre at a local club, Ballard is the only detective able to unravel the corruption that leads back to the LAPD.

This is a great read that I was not able to put down until the end. Five stars.

(In return for an honest review, I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley.)
Little, Brown and Company
Copyright © 2017 by Hieronymus, Inc.