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Blood Work (Terry McCaleb #1)

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4.09 of 5 stars 4.09  ·  rating details  ·  28,731 ratings  ·  714 reviews
Thanks to a heart transplant, former FBI agent Terrell McCaleb is enjoying a quiet retirement, renovating the fishing boat he lives on in Los Angeles Harbor. But McCaleb's calm seas turn choppy when a story in the "What Happened To?" column of the LA Times brings him face-to-face with the sister of the woman whose heart now beats in his chest. From her, McCaleb learns a te ...more
Audio CD
Published June 10th 2004 by Brilliance Audio (first published January 1st 1997)
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Jane Stewart
4 stars. Wow. This was good. A lot of things I didn’t expect. I didn’t want to stop reading.

STORY BRIEF:
McCaleb is 46 years old, retired from the FBI, and lives on a fishing boat in a Los Angeles Harbor. Two months earlier Gloria was killed in a convenience store hold up. Her organs went to several people. McCaleb got her heart. Gloria’s sister Graciela, a nurse, figures this out and asks McCaleb to help find the shooter. The police have stopped working on the case and are either incompetent or
...more
Kathrina
This title was included in last year's World Book Night -- thousands of copies of reader favorites were published and distributed at no cost to encourage literacy. A stack of this one ended up at our public library (not enough takers?) and then donated to our prison book group. Connelly's written a lot of books, and since this was the only one of his on Book Night's list, I figured it must be representative of his best.
I'm not entirely disappointed. The plot is thick with detail, and the first
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Vicki
Terry McCaleb, an ex-FBI agent, is recovering from life-saving heart replacement surgery when he takes on a pretty unlikely job. The sister of the woman whose heart now is keeping Terry alive wants him to help find the killer of her sister and the convenience store operator who was killed at the same time.

At first reluctant to take on the task, he is drawn in by Graciela's charm and persistence, and by the cuteness of Raymond, Graciela's nephew and the son of the deceased woman. When McCaleb sta
...more
Albert Riehle
What I'm learning, as I continue to read these Michael Connelly books is that outside of his Harry Bosch books, he really tells a good story and this book is no exception. This one is the story of Terry McCaleb, a retired FBI agent and serial killer hunter. Heart disease forces him into early retirement and a it takes a transplant to keep him alive. When he finds out, during his recovery, that he got his heart from a woman who was gunned down in a senseless act of violence, his old instincts kic ...more
Tom
Best Connelly book ever! I could not stop listening to this book. Terrel MacCaleb is a retired FBI profiler who recently had a heart transplant. He gets a visitor at his boat, a woman who tells him his heart came from a murder victim. She wants him to find the killer since the police have hit a wall. He can't keep himself from feeling guilty and inserts himself in tot he investigation. Little does he know how connected he has been to the case all along.

The characters in this story are some of th
...more
GymGuy
Quite an enjoyable read. After reading a few of the Michael Connelly novels and thoroughly enjoying the Mickey Haller series I thought I'd diverge a bit and try another storyline. While not quite as strong a character as Haller, McCaleb was enjoyable and perhaps more "normal." He lacks the caustic nature of Bosche (pronounced in Dutch as rhyming with dose--NOT rhyming with posche) and seems less conflicted than Haller, though there is some angst. For that reason I didn't think his character was ...more
Judy
Part detective tale, part police procedural, "Blood Work" is the story of a retired FBI agent who takes on one last case for a very personal reason. I finished it and enjoyed it well enough, but this book is not as good as the other Michael Connelly novels I've read. The main character is okay, and his rationale for taking on the case is believable. The 'love interest' stretches the bounds of believability somewhat.

But little niggles here and there ding it. (Nobody would do that. That's just out
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Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
I don't know how I missed this one. I thought I'd read all of Connelly's stuff. I was afraid I might not like this one as well because it's not Bosch, so I was pleasantly proven wrong.
This is an excellent story revolving around former FBI agent Terry McCaleb, who has recently had a heart transplant. He finds out that the heart he received came from a woman who was murdered, and the sister of that woman wants him to solve the murder.
Michael Connelly's imagination is impressive. The secrets reve
...more
Joe Stamber
Not many authors do Crime/Mystery/Thriller as well as Michael Connelly. Having being a little disappointed by A Darkness More Than Night which I read as a Harry Bosch novel rather than a Terry McCaleb one, I wasn't expecting quite as much from this one.

However, without Harry around to confuse me as to who the protaganist is, Blood Work turned out to be much more enjoyable than its sequel. It has all the ingredients that make Connelley's Bosch novels so good but works in its own right. McCaleb is
...more
Jo-Anne
I have always liked Michael Connelly's books so I wanted to read this one about Terry McCaleb. I was not disappointed.

Terry McCaleb is quite likeable. He is very, very good at his job, seeing things at crime scenes that others miss, but also he is a considerate person.

In Blood Work McCaleb was forced into early retirement because of a heart problem. Before retiring, he was a top FBI agent. He gets a heart transplant and lives quietly, nursing his new heart and restoring the boat which he lives o
...more
Franco  Santos
Es un libro del misterio que me gusta. No sabés el asesino y todo aparenta ser un sinsentido en grado sumo.

Desde la primera página la historia te roba toda tu atención. Tan es así que me leí casi toda la novela en unas horas.

Me resultó muy interesante el detective de este relato. Terry McCaleb: un exagente de policía que recibió un trasplante de corazón hace poco tiempo. Es un personaje genial.

El final es deslumbrante. Yo no me lo esperaba ni un ápice. Muy buena conclusión. Como debe ser en lo
...more
Helen
Another fast-paced Michael Connelly thriller. This one introduces us to Terry McCaleb, former FBI profiler forced to retire because of his health. He's just had a heart transplant, but ignores his doctor's orders to take it easy when an attractive woman asks him to look into her sister's murder. Turns out it is the sister's heart that now beats in his chest, giving him a personal stake in the investigation.

I always enjoy it when I find nuggets in novels that relate to the Tampa Bay area (people
...more
David
Not a Bosch novel, but the first in the ex-FBI Agent, Terry McCaleb series. I enjoyed this equally as much as the Bosch series. Michael Connelly novels are always well-written with multi-layered plots that instantly draw the reader in. And this is no exception. I thoroughly recommend it.
Webster Bull
I'm reading mysteries because I'm writing one. So I've read all of Raymond Chandler, and now I've read "Blood Work," by contemporary author Michael Connelly, who has cited Chandler as his primary inspiration.

There are worlds of difference between the two authors. To begin with, Connelly's detective, Terry McCaleb, is dry as dust compared with the observant, cynical, never less than poetic Philip Marlowe; and where Chandler's novels evolve like nightmares in which the author finds himself lost, C
...more
Nathan Moore
I haven't read a crime thriller since college. This was a fun one. Good pacing, unexpected twists, and minimal cheese. It was kinda nice to zone out on a book, but it also made me appreciate my "other books." No offense Connelly.
Tony Gleeson
By now I've come to expect that Michael Connelly is going to take me into improbable territory, with character decisions and plot twists designed to test my fealty, and crimes and criminals designed to be grotesquely repellant. Luckily he's easily a good enough writer and compelling enough storyteller to keep my allegiance, and he brings sufficient realism to the overall tale to convince me to suspend my disbelief in the particularly outrageous . This time he introduces Terry McCaleb, a former F ...more
Dan Cooper
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Gina
Blood Work by Michael Connelly.

This was a pretty good story, former FBI agent Terry McCaleb has received a heart transplant. The donor's sister finds Terry to ask him to investigate her sister's murder and of course Terry "feels a stirring deep inside that he hasn't felt before". McCaleb seems to get all emotional over stuff that doesn't strike me as real. Cheesy lines and boring romance parts but the actual story is pretty good. Why do authors think they have to put a romance in these legal/my
...more
Deana M
Excellent book! Terry McCaleb is retired FBI. He was the owner of a bad heart which caused him to retire early from his job with the bureau. Because he had a very rare blood type, he had to wait 2 years for a transplant. Approximately 9 months after the surgery, a woman confronts him on his boat which is called THE FOLLOWING SEA. The woman knows he is retired FBI, who worked on serial killer cases out of their LA office, and wants him to investigate the murder of her sister. Terry says no way; h ...more
Dana
I would love to give this book 4.5 stars if I could. It's my 8th book by Michael Connelly and it is my favorite so far. It is also the first of the "Terry McCaleb" books, though he has made an appearance in another book. (I love how these books tie into each other & I'm glad I'm reading them in order!) One thing that I really enjoyed about this book... for once I figured out some of the mystery before the detective did!

In "Blood Work", Terry McCaleb is a retired FBI agent who has recently re
...more
Adriana
I never paid any mind to this guy's books on the best seller list. Especially when I learned that they made The Lincoln Lawyer into a movie. I guess I have forever been turned off since the early '90's when John Grisham was better than the invention of the internet.

But I am a big fan of the ABC show Castle, which is based on the collaboration of a NY homicide detective and a famous mystery writer. And Mr. Connelly has made guest appearances as a poker buddy of Castle. So has James Patterson and
...more
Dodol Surodol
It's actually 4.5 stars; it's that good.

Probably the and definitely among the best crime novels I have ever read. I sort of followed Harry Bosch stories until I ran out of them and decided to check out this non-Bosch title.

Terry McCaleb is the main character, an ex-FBI agent with a career made in solving serial killer cases. [Only after I finished the book did I realize I had come across McCaleb not once, but twice, in two of Bosch' cases.] I like how he left the Bureau because of his heart fail
...more
Richard
Lots of angst, but not a lot of logic. The best single word to describe this story is "sappy." Loaded with emotion and psycho-babble, the book became a tedious read. Former FBI agent and heart transplant recipient Terry McCaleb is not a very appealing character in a detective novel. The plot has too many twists and dead ends. The protagonist makes too many mistakes. I probably will not read any more of the author's Terry McCaleb novels.
Darcy
I have never read anything by this author, but will be checking out more as I liked this story. I liked how different the McCaleb we see in the book was different than the one he had been. I found it interesting that he had a heart transplant and how that completely changed his life.

I was surprised by how this one ended up. At the start everything seemed so benign, a simple robbery, but as things slowly came out I was horrified that one person would go to such lengths. I was glad that McCaleb wa
...more
Carol Stanley-Snow
I love Michael Connelly. He writes roller coaster novels and once you start you can't get off the ride!!

So many twists and turns!! Then when he ties it all up, your amazed...never see it coming!!

A great thriller!!
Tara
I tried, I really did but I just wasn't impressed. I felt like the story has potential, it was different but the characters weren't that deep. Clint Eastwood was on the cover and I envisioned him but I don't know, I just wasn't feeling it. There was so much baggage I felt like I must be missing some backstory. The "twist" and ending was a letdown too. It was like he painting himself in a corner, gave up the answer about 50 pages in and then spent the rest of the time defending his choice. It was ...more
Deisy Fundora
UN LIBRO COMPLETO, ME FACINO LA HISTORIA Y LA FORMA QUE EL ESCRITOR LA PRESENTO , MUY BUENA !
Sumeetha Manikandan
After a long time, I really enjoyed a racy thriller. The last thriller that I read was Dan Brown's Lost Symbol which was a predictable stereotypical book. I had seen this movie long back but was not really happy with Clint Eastwood as the ex FBI agent. He looked perfect as a heart transplant patient but too old to do anything else.

The book was taut and racy. All the right adjectives for a thriller. This was the first book that I read of this author. I am going to check out whether any other titl
...more
Paul
I'm a fan of the Harry Bosch novels, and when a bookseller recommended Blood Work to me, I jumped at the chance to read it. Like many of Connelly's best novels, Blood Work is propelled by the plot. There aren't many slow spots in the novel, and the pacing is good throughout. However, as much forward momentum as the plot has, the formulaic aspects of the plot structure show through: when McCaleb hits his nadir about 2/3 of the way through, it's evident that Connelly was following the formula. The ...more
Tony Romine
This is the first non-Harry Bosch book by Michael Connelly I've read. It concerns an ex-FBI agent, Terry McCaleb, who got a heart transplant from a murder victim. He is, naturally, tracking down the person who murdered her.

Like the star rating says, this book ok. I wouldn't read it again and I'm hesitant to recommend it to anyone. My biggest problem with the novel is that it's 400 pages long and should only be about 150, maybe 200 tops. There is a ton of repetition and pointless descriptions of
...more
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads' database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Michael Connelly decided to become a writer after discovering the books of Raymond Chandler while attending the University of Florida. Once he decided on this direction he chose a major in journalism and a minor in creative writing — a curriculum in which one of his teache
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More about Michael Connelly...

Other Books in the Series

Terry McCaleb (2 books)
  • A Darkness More Than Night (Harry Bosch, #7; Terry McCaleb, #2)
The Lincoln Lawyer (Mickey Haller, #1) The Black Echo (Harry Bosch, #1) The Poet (Jack McEvoy, #1) The Fifth Witness (Mickey Haller, #4) The Last Coyote (Harry Bosch, #4)

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