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The Black Echo (Harry Bosch #1)

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4.07  ·  Rating Details  ·  91,861 Ratings  ·  2,565 Reviews
For LAPD homicide cop Harry Bosch -- hero, maverick, nighthawk -- the body in the drainpipe at Mulholland Dam is more than another anonymous statistic. This one is personal.

The dead man, Billy Meadows, was a fellow Vietnam "tunnel rat" who fought side by side with him in a nightmare underground war that brought them to the depths of hell. Now, Bosch is about to relive the
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Audio CD
Published November 25th 2006 by Brilliance Audio (first published 1992)
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Mary Boughton I assumed that the instant visas the crime bosses obtained during the fall of Saigon were through our government. It was implied that there were a lot…moreI assumed that the instant visas the crime bosses obtained during the fall of Saigon were through our government. It was implied that there were a lot of shady things going on during that war which were not looked at too closely. (less)
Cameron Wiggins No explicit sexual encounters. Somewhat implied that they sleep together but your son may not even pick up on this.
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Kemper
I’ve designed a gadget that will notify me when I run across clichés in crime thrillers with a *BEEP*. Let’s give it a test run on this Michael Connelly novel, shall we?

So this is the first book in the series featuring a LAPD detective named Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch *BEEP*. .. Shit, why is it going off already? Oh, right. Quirky name for a main character. It seems to be calibrated correctly. Let’s proceed.

In this novel published in 1992, Harry is a Vietnam veteran *BEEP* traumatized by his war e
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Eric
Sep 02, 2011 Eric rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Crime/police/detective/mystery fiction fans
Recommended to Eric by: 99c download on Amazon.com
I came at Michael Connelly backwards, reading the entire Mickey Haller series before any of his Harry Bosch books. And after encountering Bosch in The Reversal, I wasn't that compelled to read more about him. But then I found the Kindle version of this on sale for 99c, so I couldn't really say no at that point.

I was not disappointed, but blown away instead. This is a perfect detective mystery tale. Connelly's storytelling gifts are many and varied. He is a master of pacing, has a knack for creat
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Stephanie
Mar 13, 2016 Stephanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: finished-2016, botm
Harry Bosch #1 - A great first in series mystery read!!

The Black Echo is an enjoyable police procedural with loads of tension and a great twist at the end!

I don't want to summarize the plot here as so many have already done that better than I could. Following are some of the major points that I took away.

What I liked:
1. Harry Bosch!!!
2. Great descriptions of Hollywood, CA and Beverly Hills
3. Background information on Vietnam War and "tunnel rats"
4. Robust, three-dimensional character developm
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Lyn
Apr 03, 2016 Lyn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Michael Connelly introduced his signature protagonist, Harry Bosch, in the 1992 novel The Black Echo. As I write this review in 2016, the twenty-first Harry Bosch novel is expected to be released later this year. Quite a successful run for Connelly’s lone wolf, battle scarred hero detective.

“There is no such thing as a coincidence.”

So states Hieronymus Bosch, named from the fifteenth century Dutch painter of fantastic themes. Bosch was a “tunnel rat” in Vietnam – a soldier whose job it was to en
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Alexa Apallas
Aug 19, 2007 Alexa Apallas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read an article in the L.A. Times about Michael Connelly, and his background as a crime reporter intrigued me, so I decided to read his books. I started with The Black Echo, the first book in the Hieronymous Bosch series, and I am very glad that I read these books in order. Connelly is a masterful writer in that he is constantly referencing past cases and old details in his Bosch series. Some of the characters from his other novels also tend to make guest appearances.

This book sucked me in to
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Melissa
Sep 24, 2015 Melissa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks
This is the first instalment in the extensive Harry Bosch series, and also happens to be the first one that I have read (or heard in this case). I really enjoyed it.

Harry Bosch is a detective in the LAPD homicide division in Hollywood. While investigating a body found in an old tunnel, he recognises it as a fellow ex marine Meadows who served with him in the Vietnamese war. They were both “tunnel rats” who fought below Vietnam in the extensive tunnels. After recognising him, and realising it was
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Phrynne
Jan 11, 2015 Phrynne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Having read a few of the later Harry Bosch novels it was time I started at the beginning of the series and read them in order. I am very glad I read this one! Okay so Harry is a bit of a cliche but he is also very likeable in a strange sort of way. He reminds me a little of Jack Reacher with his war damaged personality and his total disregard for authority. I enjoyed the twists and turns of the story and especially liked the procedural details and seeing the way a case develops as various clues ...more
Mona
Nov 12, 2015 Mona rated it really liked it
Enjoyable Well Written Crime Novel, Except for the Last Part of the Book

As another reviewer, Suzy, says, this novel is very "old school". https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

A lot of it may resonate more with those of us old enough to remember pay phones, Alice's Restaurant, and the Viet Nam War and its aftermath.

Still, except for the ending, which I found somehow unsatisfying, this is well written enough to carry any reader, whether they or not they remember its era.

This is my first Michae
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Edward Lorn
I'm not reviewing this book because Kemper's review says everything that needs to be said about. While trying to write my own review, I found myself regurgitating everything he said, so this is what you get. A link to his review.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

In summation: I swear I'm not being lazy here. Kemper simply nailed everything I wanted to say.

Final Judgment: Nothing new, but I still enjoyed it.
Jim
Aug 02, 2016 Jim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An excellent mystery & main character, if a bit dour. I really liked the amount of detail & logic in this. Great twists & very realistic. Even the 'bad' guys were well done or maybe they were especially well done. Not all were as bad as I first thought - jerks, but they had reasons. Again, very realistic. On to the next in the series.

The series, as I've been able to put it together, is not just one, but is intertwined with Connelly's other series. I've tried to put the books & st
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David "proud Gleeman in Branwen's adventuring party"
One mystery I was unable to solve...exactly why is The Black Echo so darn popular?!?

The Vietnam War never really ended, not for Harry Bosch. A former "tunnel rat" who fought most of the war underground, Harry now finds himself unable to sleep and unable to go into underground areas without suffering panic attacks. But now that he's a detective for the Los Angeles Police Department, Harry's about to learn that sometimes what's on the surface is even dirtier than what's underground. When a former
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Sue
Mar 13, 2011 Sue rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: detective-crime
This was a super detective book that I couldn't put down.I made a mistake by not reading the books in order of sequence.I read first "The Concrete Blonde" followed by "The Black Echo."The Black Echo was the first in the series.Harry is a homicide cop who works a case and never gives up, always looking for a different angle.He picks up a case on the weekend and his partner is needing to work his moonlighting job, so Harry goes himself to see the body in a drainpipe. He recognizes an old buddy fro ...more
LJ
First Sentence: The boy couldn’t see in the dark, but he didn’t need to.

LAPD detective Hieronymous (aka Harry) Bosch is a loner and a nighthawk. Called out on a routine drug overdose case, Bosch soon realizes that the victim found lying in the Mullholland Dam drainpipe is no accident case. Billy Meadows was a fellow 'tunnel rat' in Vietnam and Harry swears to bring the killer to justice.

Written and set in 1992, it is interesting to see how times have changed in these 18 years. There were no cell
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Lauren
The Black Echo
4 Stars

LAPD Detective Harry Bosch is called out to a routine OD death that turns into anything but routine when the corpse not only turns out to be the victim of a homicide, but someone Bosch knew from his days as a Tunnel Rat in Vietnam. As Bosch slowly unravels the details behind the murder, he rubs a few people the wrong way - the FBI, Internal Affairs and the cops he works with. But nothing will stop Harry from getting to the truth …

A good police procedural with an interesting
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Scott Rhee
Oct 21, 2013 Scott Rhee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There are certain genre writers who, within their given genres, transcend, through phenomenal writing and a deep understanding of the human condition, the formulaic structures and cliches of the run-of-the-mill horror story, science fiction epic, or murder mystery. Stephen King, Peter Straub, and Dan Simmons are examples in the horror genre. Ursula K. Le Guin, Harlan Ellison, and Neal Stephenson are examples in the sci-fi set. James Lee Burke, Elizabeth George, and Michael Connelly exemplify the ...more
Harry
Dec 01, 2012 Harry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Time saver tip: if you've read my review of any Harry Bosch book, you've read 'em all. Since I don't reveal plots and reserve my comments to the overall book/author, characterization, style, etc...I just don't feel the need to repeat myself as in most cases series books if any good at all do remain consistent. The star ratings might change, but not my opinion of the series as a whole.

Michael Connelly is a well know and very popular author in the mystery/detective and police procedural genres. E
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Magdalena
I like Harry Bosch. He comes with a lot of baggage, he's his own man, he does what he thinks best, he doesn't necessarily follow the rules. He is who he is. I like that. And I liked the book. It's a good story, well-written. It just felt repetitive at times, not as fast paced as I would have liked. But it's still a good story, a good solid start to Harry Bosch series and I will definitely continue with it.
Franco  Santos
Primer libro que leí de Harry Bosch y por ahora el único. Está bien: entretiene, es ameno, rápido, sin embargo, bastante predecible. Es la típica novela negra, sólo que, para peor, ya se saben quiénes son la mayoría de los "malos".

Un buen libro para pasar el rato, pero no pasa de eso. Me esperaba mucho más.
Justin
Jul 30, 2015 Justin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's been quite some time since I've been able to sit down and read for pleasure. I don't usually go for these types of books, but, every once in a while, I like to grab a ragged mass-market paperback off the library shelf, take it home, and dive in for just sheer escapism.

This book did just that. It was slow in the beginning, then fast-paced, then slow again, then crazy. It provided plenty of twists and turns along the way. It is one of those books where the descriptions really aren't importan
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Mark Chisnell
Apr 11, 2013 Mark Chisnell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked this one up because it was a group read on Goodreads, and I’m very glad I did. The Harry Bosch books have been a huge hit and it’s easy to see why from this opening tale - Connelly nails his central character from the very beginning.

Harry Bosch is a Vietnam vet, a tunnel fighter, one of the handful of Americans that struggled to battle the North Vietnamese in the dimension that they totally dominated – underground. Harry’s also a nascent media star for breaking a couple of big cases an
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Bill
Aug 17, 2016 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The is the first book in the Harry Bosch mystery series. I have previously read one other but will have to try it again and read the series in order. I enjoyed this very much. I liked the methodical way the crimes were investigated; I like Harry Bosch; he's an old style cop, a smoker and a coffee inhaler, but he has strong values of right and wrong. He has been moved to Hollywood division as a punishment and finds himself investigating the murder of an old companion from the Vietnam War; a fello ...more
Emily
Feb 09, 2012 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Harry Bosch is a law enforcement officer who is "not part of the family," which means he likes to do things his own way, isn't overly concerned about protecting the department from scandal, is more likely to investigate something that others would slag off, and absolutely gets results. This is a bad thing for the criminals and slag-offs he seems to be surrounded by. Harry's first case begins with the murder of a person Harry served in Vietnam with. It looks like a routine heroin overdose, but Ha ...more
Katy
Oct 27, 2012 Katy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of noir, thriller, police procedurals
Please note: This review written 4/23/2008, so please don't judge based upon my current style and format.

My general synopsis: The Black Echo is a debut in two ways - it is, apparently, Micheal Connelly's first novel, and it is also our introduction to Harry Bosch, a homicide detective in the Hollywood beat (after being busted down from Robbery-Homicide for killing a suspect). A loner and a maverick, Bosch is not popular with his bosses, nor with many of his co-workers, but he gets the job done.
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Ms. Nikki
Who am I?
Where am I?
In darkness' depth.
Who am I?
Where am I?
Alone. All by myself.
Who am I?
Where am I?
I cannot see.
Who am I?
Where am I?
Can no one hear me?
Who am I?
Where am I?
I'm starting to hear things.
Who am I?
Where am I?
I can barely breathe.
Who am I?
Where am I?
We shall see.
Who am I?
Where am I?
When I take my leave.

by Nikki



4 1/2 Stars

It took me a minute to get the hang of this author's voice and also the voice of Harry Bosch. He's a very stiff man who was in the war in the underground tunnels in
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David
Feb 06, 2015 David rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: grizzled LAPD detectives without a personality who bang FBI chicks
So, this was okay. Nothing exceptional or memorable, pretty much the epitome of "commercial fiction." If you want an LAPD detective story, here is an LAPD detective story.

Harry Bosch (yes, his real name is Hieronymus, his mother, who we learn later was a prostitute, liked the Dutch painter - ahaha, characterization!) is a child of institutions. He grew up in the system (see: mother, prostitute), then joined the Army and did a tour in Viet Nam as a "tunnel rat," then became a cop. But even though
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Mike (the Paladin)
Well, it's happened again. I read a couple of books by a writer and liked them so I picked up a book (an earlier book) about a different character and it just didn't draw me in.

Harry (Hieronymus) Bosch is a detective. He's smart, good at his job and in the past been a media darling with a TV movie having been made about a big case. Not so much now...he's fallen on "hard times" having been suspended and not being real popular with IAD.

I know this is an early book and it was probably newer when t
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Kirsti
MY FRIEND JAN AND I TALK ABOUT BOOKS

Jan: I just read The Black Echo by Michael Connelly. I think you'd like it.

Me: Okay!

[six months later]

Me: Jan, I read that book The Black Ice by Michael Connelly. You're right--it was really good!

Jan: Not The Black Ice. His first book, The Black Echo.

Me: Oh.

[six months later]

Me: Jan, I read that book Echo Park by Michael Connelly. I liked this one even better!

Jan: Not Echo Park. His first book, The Black Echo.

Me: Oh. Why does he give his books such similar tit
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Suzy
Oct 13, 2015 Suzy rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed this first in the Harry Bosch series. Felt very old school in a good way. Echoes of the Vietnam war played throughout the book which took place 20 years after it ended. Bosch is propelled by coffee, cigarettes, beer, pay phones and his code of ethics developed as a "tunnel rat" in Vietnam. His outsider status in the LAPD homicide division creates layers of drama and interest. I will definitely move on in this series!

The audiobook was narrated by Dick Hill. He also narrates the Jac
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Kelly
This is my 3rd book in this series that I have read. I enjoy the Harry Bosch stories but haven't been reading them in order. This was a great read with lots of typical twists and turns of Bosch books you are used too. I had read "Nine Dragons" before this book (#14 in the series I think) and in Black Echo I got find out the back story of Bosch and Elanor Wish and their daughter, who plays a big role in Nine Dragons. This book was exciting and fast paced, with a couple good laughs along the way a ...more
Scott Brook
May 15, 2012 Scott Brook rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first excursion into the writing of Michael Connelly. I wanted to start out with the beginning of the Bosch series because of some recommendations for his later entries into the series. After starting out a little slow (to flush out some of the Harry Bosch backstory), this novel picked up nicely and finished very strong. I'm glad I started with this entry. It has wet my appetite for some of his other Bosch entries and his other series. Look forward to more great writing from Mr. Conn ...more
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The Page Turners: The Black Echo [Monthly Read | June 2016] 6 16 Aug 03, 2016 02:17PM  
Goodreads Librari...: Harry Bosch/H.B. Universe/Related Series 1 12 Jul 05, 2016 10:03AM  
2-3-4 Challenge B...: Question D 11 10 May 11, 2016 05:32AM  
2-3-4 Challenge B...: Question N 9 11 May 10, 2016 12:58PM  
2-3-4 Challenge B...: Question M 11 10 May 10, 2016 12:50PM  
2-3-4 Challenge B...: Question K 5 9 May 10, 2016 12:12PM  
2-3-4 Challenge B...: Question J 7 8 May 10, 2016 12:10PM  
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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

Harry Bosch (1 - 10 of 22 books)
  • The Black Ice (Harry Bosch, #2; Harry Bosch Universe, #2)
  • The Concrete Blonde (Harry Bosch, #3; Harry Bosch Universe, #3)
  • The Last Coyote (Harry Bosch, #4; Harry Bosch Universe, #4)
  • Trunk Music (Harry Bosch, #5; Harry Bosch Universe, #5)
  • Angels Flight (Harry Bosch, #6; Harry Bosch Universe, #6)
  • A Darkness More Than Night (Harry Bosch, #7; Terry McCaleb, #2; Harry Bosch Universe, #8)
  • City of Bones (Harry Bosch, #8; Harry Bosch Universe, #9)
  • Lost Light (Harry Bosch, #9; Harry Bosch Universe, #10)
  • The Narrows (Harry Bosch, #10; Harry Bosch World, #12)
  • The Closers (Harry Bosch, #11; Harry Bosch World, #13)

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“You can't patch a wounded soul with a Band-Aid.” 87 likes
“The setting sun burned the sky pink and orange in the same bright hues as surfers' bathing suits. It was beautiful deception, Bosch thought, as he drove north on the Hollywood Freeway to home. Sunsets did that here. Made you forget it was the smog that made their colors so brilliant, that behind every pretty picture there could be an ugly story.” 24 likes
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