Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Poet (Jack McEvoy, #1)” as Want to Read:
The Poet (Jack McEvoy, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Poet (Jack McEvoy #1)

4.18  ·  Rating Details  ·  52,665 Ratings  ·  1,566 Reviews
Denver crime-beat reporter Jack McEvoy specializes in violent death. So when his homicide detective brother kills himself, McEvoy copes in the only way he knows how--he decides to write the story. But his research leads him to suspect a serial killer is at work--a devious murderer who's killing cops and leaving a trail of poetic clues. It's the news story of a lifetime, if ...more
Paperback, 510 pages
Published July 1st 2002 by Grand Central Publishing (first published January 28th 1996)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Poet, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Poet

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg LarssonAnd Then There Were None by Agatha ChristieAngels & Demons by Dan BrownRebecca by Daphne du MaurierIn Cold Blood by Truman Capote
Best Crime & Mystery Books
38th out of 5,284 books — 11,665 voters
The Da Vinci Code by Dan BrownThe Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg LarssonAngels & Demons by Dan BrownThe Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg LarssonThe Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson
38th out of 2,433 books — 3,052 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Oh, mid-‘90s, how quaint you seem in this book published in ‘96 with your dial-up internet connections, faxes, pagers, landline phones, and new-fangled digital cameras.

Perhaps the thing dating this the most is the idea that The Rocky Mountain News editors’ biggest concern is that they’ll get scooped by another newspaper in the fast paced world of print journalism, and not that their entire industry will collapse and they’ll be out of business by 2009.

Of course, if all their reporters acted lik
Aug 03, 2009 Georg rated it it was amazing
Shelves: english, crime
I really liked this book. It has a strong beginning and a lot of credible characters. What I liked most was the fact that it seemed to end on page 450. I thought: Ok, not a bad solution, but a bit obvious. But then I noticed there were still 100 pages to go. Finally I realized the end was not the end, but only a fake end, and then the "real story" was about to begin. Very strong and surprising until the very last page.
Jun 24, 2013 Arah-Lynda rated it it was amazing
Shelves: top, 2011, i-said

Wow, from the opening line Death is my beat. to the chilling conclusion, this haunting tale grabs you by the scuff of your neck and never lets go.

Meet Jack McEvoy a reporter who makes his way covering murder stories. Little does he know that the next story he will write involves the death of his own brother, an apparent suicide. Jack has a difficult time accepting that his brother Sean, a homicide detective, would take his own life, further still he does not understand his brother's last words,
James Thane
Jan 18, 2012 James Thane rated it liked it
Shelves: crime-fiction
Measured against the standard set by most crime fiction writers, this is a pretty good book, but based against the standard set by Michael Connelly it's sort of average, somewhere in the middle of the pack of the large number of books he has now produced.

This seems a bit odd, because the protagonist in this book is a newspaper reporter and Connelly was himself a reporter for a good number of years before he became a novelist. One would think that Connelly would have this character nailed. In tr
May 31, 2015 Mara rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Mara by: Richard
This is less of a review than it is a sort of caveat to my rating—the caveat being that I listened to this book. I don't know if there are multiple audio versions of The Poet out there, or if they just love to re-copyright things every few years, but the 1996 audible edition felt like it undermined the story's natural suspense. Don't get me wrong, Michael Connelly's brand of mystery/thriller writing isn't exactly subtle, but echo-chamber effects made moments of tension feel downright hoke ...more
Scott Rhee
Dec 29, 2013 Scott Rhee rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
Some things are better left unsaid, so the saying goes.

I personally disagree with that sentiment. While very few topics are considered “taboo” anymore, a few cultural taboos still linger; subjects upon which many writers still fear to tread due to its general unpleasantness. Cancer used to be taboo. So did adultery and homosexuality. Taboos succeed in creating an atmosphere in which feelings never get expressed and problems never get solved. Taboos generally make things worse.

Pedophilia is, in s
Mike (the Paladin)
I read The Lincoln Lawyer about a week ago and have been on a sort of "Michael Connelly marathon" ever since. I like the writer and I like his books. I think I still like The Micky Haller character best of his creations but this is my favorite book "outside that series" so far.

The Poet is a psychopathic killer who has been killing for a fairly long time. Not sure how long because see, his victims have so far been mistaken for suicides. That is they were until one of them was Jack McEvoy's broth
Feb 02, 2015 Richard rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller, crime

Michael Connelly is pretty much my go to guy at the minute for a solid crime thriller. The amount of books this guy has churned out is quite impressive but more so is the fact that there haven’t really been any duds (or none of which I have read to date) and it looks like soon he will be having his own TV series for his most prominent character “Bosch” airing on Amazon (the trailer looks good and I believe the first episode is free to air).

This book is a standalone and introduces new charact
Richard Reviles Censorship Always in All Ways
Rating: 3.5 very pleased stars of five

Connelly's Harry Bosch series will either make you want to read this book, or run from it. I liked the Harry Bosch mysteries well enough, but I really respond more to Jack McEvoy, Denver journalist and crusader for the rights of victims of crime.

This is the first appearance by McEvoy. He's hot on the trail of a cop-killer, one whose talent for murder makes him able to turn a crime scene into a suicide scene. Jack's brother, a homicide cop, is dead...and natu
Becky C. Hennessy
Mar 05, 2013 Becky C. Hennessy rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 05, 2012 Becky rated it really liked it
Recommended to Becky by: Terri
It's been a long time since I've read a straight-up police procedural style thriller... and I've missed it. I love the fast paced style, the clues, trying to figure things out along with the characters, seeing inside the system, all of it. I don't know why I don't read more of these, but I think this book has just reminded me how much I enjoy them, and why I should read more of them.

I really, really enjoyed this one. I can't give it a full 5 star rating, because I had just a few issues with it,
Cathy DuPont
Feb 18, 2013 Cathy DuPont rated it liked it
“For her passivity in these horizontal moments was diametrically opposed to her demeanor in our vertical moments.” Quote from Jack McEvoy from The Poet.

Sentences like that just capture my heart. It could be easily said to be trite or ordinary, maybe, but sometimes I like ordinary, at times, anyway. And I always, always love Michael Connelly’s writing. He’s the best contemporary writer today, in my opinion.

The Narrows was next on my list, and it was Tay, Anthony or Tiftoboy…one of them suggested
Gerard Oconnell
May 24, 2015 Gerard Oconnell rated it it was amazing
Enjoyed this book very much. hard to put down. I will be reading more books from this writer very soon. Thanks to Cameron for picking this book.
Rex Fuller
Dec 02, 2012 Rex Fuller rated it really liked it
Outstanding. This may be the best Connelly book of all. It is the best that I have read, even though the beginning (first 10% or so) was slow and repetitive. McEvoy is not as strong of a personality as either Bosch or Haller. But the book overall is stronger than the Bosch and Haller books I've read.
Cameron Wiggins
Jun 10, 2015 Cameron Wiggins rated it really liked it
This is an excellent novel by Connelly and a welcome departure from his Harry Bosch character. I am a firm believer of not posting spoilers in a review and I will holdfast to this belief for the sake of future readers. However, I am simply amazed at how skillfully Connelly combines detailed characterization with a progressively forwarding plot structure. And, Connelly continues to cover all of the bases.
Jack McEvoy, reporter for the Rocky Mountain News in Denver, is our main protagonist (?) in t
Jan 31, 2015 Ritwik rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wanted to love this book. I really did. Mr. Connelly is considered as one of the biggest crime fiction writers out there and after a thorough research I decided to start with this one. I still remember the start,'Death is my beat'. It gripped me but the hold loosened up and I decided that maybe crime fiction is not my cup of tea or any kind of thriller for that matter. I took up 'Casino Royale' before finishing this book and Lo! the writing, the prose, the compactness,the solidity was much bet ...more
Franco  Santos
Mar 25, 2015 Franco Santos rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Muy buen libro policíaco. Empieza lento pero con una trama absorbente. Asimismo, me resultó bastante pesado. No se me hizo insoportable, sin embargo la combinación de la lentitud con esa densidad fue decisivo para ponerle 3 estrellas.

No obstante, como ven, la novela tiene mis 4 estrellas. Sinceramente pocos libros de misterio me lograron sorprender. Éste lo hizo. Por eso mismo se lleva las 4. Cuando se creía que ya estaba todo zanjado, Michael Connelly sacó un as bajo su manga que me dejó obnub
Nov 06, 2012 Sue rated it it was amazing
I received a recommendation from a Goodreads member to read "The Poet" by Michael Connelly. I am so glad I listened to their recommendation.This was an amazing novel...the best I have ever read by this talented author.

Jack McEvoy was a reporter for the Rocky newspaper, who wrote about murder stories."Death was his Beat." Sean,his twin brother,a veteran Denver Police detective was in charge into the slaying of a University student, Theresa Lofton, found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot
Randy Schultz
Mar 23, 2011 Randy Schultz rated it really liked it
In catching up on some Connelly I'd missed, I came across this, what I believe is the first of the McEvoy novels. Mid stream, I turned to my wife and confessed that I was taking it slow because this book, was candy. Connelly is a great writer, a great character sketcher and this book bears testament to that. What it doesn't bear testament to is the sensible finishes that Connelly generally includes. I don't mean that you're left with unfinished business, just that by the time I hit the end of th ...more
Charlene Intriago
Apr 21, 2015 Charlene Intriago rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-read-2015
There have been a lot of reviews of this one, so I'll just say it was my first Michael Connelly book and I was told it was the best. Reporter Jack McEvoy just keeps digging and digging until he puts two and two together because it is a murder too close to home for him. He has a hard sell to the cops but eventually they come on board. Anyone else not see that ending coming??
Winter Sophia Rose
Oct 24, 2015 Winter Sophia Rose rated it it was amazing
Gripping, Captivating, Dark & Gritty! An Excellent Emotional, Page Turner!
Jul 21, 2009 Michael rated it did not like it
My love affair with Michael Connelly ends.

The plot leaves so many threads unresolved that it feels like Connelly just cheated. I usually don't notice things like this, so it must be pretty egregious.

Whatever speaks to me about Harry Bosch, Jack McEvoy ain't got it. I think the Bosch books work better because the mysteries are so intertwined with Bosch's experiences. There's an attempt to set up the same situation here with McEvoy's sister, but it fell flat for me.

Finally, the book is about a p
Feb 04, 2008 Bill rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For years I've been following Susan Dennis' mystery reviews website.
It was through there that I had first heard of Michael Connelly. His Heironymous Bosch series is excellent and I urge you to read them, starting with Black Echo.
Now, The Poet is a departure from this series, this time the lead character is a crime reporter (Connelly's profession; write what you know, right?). This novel is about a killer who leaves clues referring to Edgar Allan Poe. There's also an extremely creepy pedophile an
Mar 28, 2010 Terri rated it it was amazing
I have three favourite crime thrillers. This is number one. (Jeffery Deaver's The Bone Collector and Coffin Dancer are no 2 & 3)I have read this book a few times and get a buzz out of it every time. It just has something. That something that many authors try to capture but only a few can. It is not a tangible something, it is just a combination of skill, plot and character formation.
I won't tell you what this book is about, because it is the uniqueness of the story unfolding that draws you i
Mar 13, 2009 Dolphe rated it liked it
"The Poet" shows that Michael Connelly is certainly a very capable writer. The first half of the book is an incredibly interesting read despite some elements you can see coming a mile away. That may be intentional -- a nod to the Miss Marple in all of us who exclaim "AHA, skullduggery afoot!". The twists and turns of the story are handled expertly enough, yet the second half of the book still falls apart. Much of that is due to the odd murder scenario which seems to belong more to a supernatural ...more
May 11, 2009 Ed rated it it was amazing
I really liked the hard-nosed, relentless newspaper reporter at the now defunct (sadly) Rocky Mountain News. The pacing was good for a big book with a few nifty twists at the end.
Sep 08, 2015 William rated it it was ok
2.5-stars perhaps. Alternatively exciting and absurd, full of outrageous plot holes, with a protagonist who seems lost much of the time....

I really struggled with this book, and almost put it down for good several times. - However, I was told that it is important for my next Harry Bosch The Narrows

And to be fair, about half of the book is superbly paced, but with the unsympathetic protagonist dragged along. The extremely repulsive villain, and again the subject of (view spoiler)
Deborah Edwards
Michael Connelly is an excellent writer. This book was well-paced, well-plotted, and completely engrossing for all of 352 pages. Unfortunately, the edition I read had 434 pages, and therein lies the problem. If you haven't read "The Poet," but you intend to do so, I do not want to dissuade you from that endeavor, because Connelly really is a very good writer with an inventive mind and an evocative style. On the other hand, you may want to skip the rest of this review, as it is about to contain s ...more
Jan 15, 2012 Michael rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: Michael Connelly himself
I am going to say it: there is no way Michael Connelly wrote this book. This was so irritating of a read i tucked a $5 bill after the final page as an incentive to finish! Had this been my first Connelly it would have most certainly been my last.

I dont know where to start. I am prepared to blame myself for my dislike for this novel. I am not a die-hard Connelly fan but i have read some of the Harry Bosch series, have loved the Mikey Haller series and tried to read something called VOID MOON tha
Aug 09, 2007 Jack rated it liked it
Recommends it for: thriller / crime lovers
Shelves: jackrecommends
There are a lot lot of serial killer novels out there. Michael Connelly's "The Poet" rests a cut above much of the slasher genre. "Poet" tells the story of Jack McEvoy, a crime reporter for the Rocky Mountain News, in Denver. His twin brother Sean, a homicide detective for the Denver police has just committed suicide, despondent over his inability to solve a grisly murder.

Connelly crafts his story with quiet force - in the hearse traveling to the funeral with Sean's widowed wife Riley, Jack thi
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Sunset Express (Elvis Cole, #6)
  • Prayers for Rain (Kenzie & Gennaro, #5)
  • The Killing Kind (Charlie Parker, #3)
  • The Tin Roof Blowdown (Dave Robicheaux, #16)
  • Revolution #9
  • Furnace
  • A Firing Offense
  • Family Values
  • Latitude Zero
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
More about Michael Connelly...

Other Books in the Series

Jack McEvoy (2 books)
  • The Scarecrow (Jack McEvoy, #2)

Share This Book

“In the long run, all wrongs are righted, every minus is equalized with a plus, the columns are totaled and the totals are found correct. But that's in the long run. We must live in the short run and matters are often unjust there. The compensating for us of the universe makes all the accounts come out even, but they grind down the good as well as the wicked in the process.” 23 likes
“It’s lucky no one else knows what our most secret thoughts are. We’d all be seen for the cunning, self-aggrandizing fools we are.” 9 likes
More quotes…