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The Concrete Blonde (Harry Bosch, #3; Harry Bosch Universe, #3)
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The Concrete Blonde

(Harry Bosch #3)

by
4.17  ·  Rating details ·  49,313 ratings  ·  2,198 reviews
Detective Harry Bosch was sure he'd shot the serial killer responsible for a string of murders in LA . . . but now, a new crime makes him question his convictions.

They call him the Dollmaker, a serial killer who stalks Los Angeles and leaves a grisly calling card on the faces of his female victims. When a suspect is shot by Detective Harry Bosch, everyone believes the city
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Mass Market Paperback, 484 pages
Published February 1st 2007 by Grand Central Publishing (first published June 1st 1994)
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Average rating 4.17  · 
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 ·  49,313 ratings  ·  2,198 reviews


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Bill Kerwin
Nov 23, 2008 rated it really liked it

I'm not a big fan of novels about serial killers with distinctive M.O.'s who leave clues in notes sent to the lead detective, particularly when the supposed murderer has already been incarcerated or killed, and the possibility of a copycat--or an original injustice--emerges. Been there. Done that. Squared.

But Connelly's novel is so well-plotted and so well-written and features such believable characters and such realistic glimpses into the police detective's world that I was completely won over
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James Thane
Mar 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
Four years ago, L. A. homicide detective, Harry Bosch, was part of a task force hunting a sadistic serial killer known as the Dollmaker. The killer preyed on vulnerable women and was blamed for taking the lives of eleven victims. Late one night, after the rest of the team had gone home, Bosch took a frantic call from a prostitute who said that she had just escaped from the Dollmaker. Harry assumed this was probably just another false lead and decided to meet the woman on his way home, without no ...more
carol.
Jul 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
In book three of the Harry Bosch series, Connelly finally hits his stride. The preceding two books frequently referenced the lethal shooting of a serial killer, a career-changer that resulted in Harry being transferred out of the glamorous (?!) Robbery-Homicide Division and into the hinterlands in Hollywood. In The Concrete Blonde, the case is being tried in a civil court. Harry's refused to plead or settle, and is making do with a lawyer from the D.A.'s office against a top-notch civil rights a ...more
Phrynne
Feb 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I'm giving this five stars because I totally raced through it and enjoyed every minute! Harry Bosch is a really captivating main character who always manages to rise above his problems - just. Much of this book takes place in a court room which is a setting I normally do not much enjoy. However this was written so well that even I got drawn in to the awfulness of the process of law. The ending was a total surprise to me . I was completely unaware of whodunnit until the author let me know. Anothe ...more
Paul O'Neill
Apr 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
Best cop thriller series I've read, and this is the best book in the series so far.

What makes this series so great? Bosch. An intriguing character who Connelly writes very well and builds upon book by book.

This series is equal parts cop procedural stuff and character driven greatness. The latter often gets missed in the genre.

He's a vulnerable, and therefore, realistic character. He makes mistakes and he has a chequered past (although not overly so).

I look forward to grabbing the next book s
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Jonetta
Aug 25, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-suspense
Four years ago, Harry Bosch shot and killed Norman Church who was believed to be the infamous serial killer, The Dollmaker. Now, his widow is suing Harry for wrongful death and his career is on the line. It gets even more complicated when another body is discovered during the trial, supposedly killed by The Dollmaker after Church's death.

A significant part of the story covers the trial, which really serves as the anchor for all else going on as Harry and the original task force try to investiga
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Lyn
Apr 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Very good.

Crime fiction fans took notice of writer Michael Connelly and his hero detective Hieronymus "Harry" Bosch after the strong first and second books featuring Bosch, The Black Echo and The Black Ice. The two “Black” books were solid, but also had some sophomoric problems that held them back from being truly exceptional.

Connelly’s 1994 Bosch book, and third in the series, shows him writing with confidence and flair – this is a writer hitting his stride and stepping up his game. Not only wa
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Julie
Apr 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I have read mystery thrillers most of my life, but my husband is lukewarm on a lot of detective type books. He enjoys fantasy/ Sci-fi/horror stuff. But, I talked him into reading this one with me as a "buddy" read.
The truth is I couldn't remember if I had read this one or not. I had not.
I can't add more to the comments and reviews that have already been posted about his novel. It was just plain awesome. A+ all the way!
There is a serial killer, a courtroom drama, Harry's personal life and histo
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Becky
May 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
I am really enjoying this series. I'm only on book three, but I think that the style and no-nonsense aspect of the writing, combined with a main character that is both weirdly in tune with himself and his emotions, while still being the stereotypical closed off, masculine type, it's just working for me right now. I really loved one scene where, after a separation from his girlfriend, he acknowledges to himself that he can feel his brain separating from her, and that the longer she takes to decid ...more
Mark
Well her is Harry Bosch again this time he is in court having to to account his actions in killing the supposed killer the Dollmaker the family of the deceased is not convinced that their husband and father was a killer. During the lawsuit it turns out that there was not one but a second killer disguising his kills, and that seems to become a problem for Bosch in this new court-case with Honey Chandler leading the defense of the family who feels that Bosch did the wrong thing.

Another serial kill
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kartik narayanan
Oct 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Hallelujah!

After the disaster that is The Black Ice, The Concrete Blonde restores my faith in Bosch.

It is an excellent book with great detective work as well as tons of red herrings that kept me guessing till the end. Woohoo! Season 1 of the TV series borrows some of the plot from this book. But, while what is kept in the TV series is captivating, the stuff that did not make the cut is even better. The rest of the plot is about figuring out who the serial killer actually is.

The book also does
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Richard
Sep 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime, thriller
9/10

This was the best Bosch story I have read to date. It might even be the best Connelly novel or at least on par with The Fifth Witness. Each Bosch novel has got better and better so far but it will be a hard act to follow after this!

The story has two aspects, the law room aspect and the on-going serial killer aspect. All linked in some way or another and linked together expertly. It's easy to see how Connelly was able to hit his stride straight away with "The Lincoln Lawyer" as the courtroom
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Matt
Jul 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook
When I began the Bosch series, mention on the Dollmaker case and its resultant banishment of the detective led me to wonder if we'd get a flashback book that would cover this major case. Connelly did one better, mixing the Dollmaker case with new developments and a qausi-legal thriller. Connelly at his best.

While Bosch is in civil court, dealingy with the fallout of killing the apparent Dollmaker, a new body surfaces and opens the case wide open. How could the killings keep going on 4 years afte
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Sandra ~ ♥ Cross My Heart ♥
Reviewed at Cross My Heart Writings and Reviews

Four years after killing Norman Church, aka The Dollmaker, Harry Bosch is being sued for wrongful death by the man’s wife. As Harry defends his actions, another victim’s body is recovered and this one was murdered after the death of The Dollmaker killer casting doubt on Harry’s case. Harry knows it’s looking bad for him. Did he make a mistake? Or is there another explanation?

The Concrete Blonde is the perfect blend of suspense and police procedural
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Vivian
Feb 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: suspense, los-angeles
"Justice, Detective Bosch, is just a concrete blonde."

I actually thought I was going to hate this about 30 pages in, and was actively side-eying my friends who'd rated it highly because I'm not a fan of courtroom dramas. All the chatter about downtown LA and Spring St. had me thinking about jury duty and how I'm likely to be tapped again. All for doing my civic duty, but ugh, the drive--please let me transfer service is all I wish--I'll go to Compton. But I digress.
The city offered so much beau
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Larry Bassett
Nov 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio, mystery
I thought this was by far the best book in the first three books of the series. Maybe it's just because Harry had the same girlfriend through the whole book and she had been his girlfriend for the year before the book.

The mystery in this book was alluded to in one of the prior books in the series. Since the series seems to be on an annual publication bases that means the idea for this book was rumbling around in the authors mind for a year or more before the book was written. I think that is int
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Velvetink
Jul 03, 2011 rated it liked it
3 and half stars.
Ok this is only the 2nd Connelly book I've read (the first being "The Poet") but beginning to see a pattern here. Towards the end you are geared up to one suspect being the killer but then bang no wrong guy, it's another and again no wrong guy it's really this guy. Kind of unsatisfying because in the end there isn't a real analysis of the actual killer. Fast read though if you want to veg out of your own life for a while & be a super sleuth for one night. Bosch seemed like an ok
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fleurette
Jun 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery-thriller
I'm nearly sure that this is my first book by Michael Connelly and I loved it. I don't know why it took me so long to read one of his books finally but I'm so glad I finally did it. It is a great story, I couldn't stop reading. I probably should have started with the first book in the series but fortunately it doesn't matter for the story.

Harry Bosch is a very complicated character. Knowing him only from this one book, I can't say I know him well but I don't have an impression that he is underde
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Fred
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Goodreads - #2 in Best Police Procedurals

The book started slow but then it is intense.....

The “Dollmaker” leaves bodies strangled with their own pocketbook strap & buried in dirt/cement. Hair/makeup residues from dead woman provide leads.

Bosch receives a lead/address to the “Dollmaker” home. Norman Church’s Garage apartment (aircraft designer) & he kills the unarmed naked Church. Evidence found was “unique” makeup on 9 dead woman matching 9 “unique” makeup kits found in Church’s apartment.

A Blo
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Stephen
Sep 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Best yet of this series but a little longer than it needed to be so not quite 5 stars. Great ending that kept the suspense going throughout and a lot of unexpected twists on the way. Like the way that the Bosch character is developing too.
Laura
4.25 stars. This series just keeps getting better. I can't say enough about Michael Connelly's work. If you're like me and you enjoy a good crime novel, but could do without lots of violence, language and sex, you should give him a try. Not to say they are free of these things, because they aren't and can be gritty at times, but violence and gore don't predominate his work.

His writing is smart and suspenseful. His background as a journalist on the crime beat permeates his work. You can tell he'
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S.P. Aruna
May 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller-mystery
In Harry Bosch's third adventure in the series, the detective is standing trial for his actions in killing a serial killer four years earlier. The story takes place in 1994 Los Angeles when the 1991 Rodney King beating by police and the ensuing 1992 riots are still fresh in the city's minds.

I did like this better than The Black Echo. The writing has tightened up by this time in the author's career. But what I really enjoyed was the structure of the plot - courtroom scenes (I'm a sucker for cour
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Brooke
Jun 06, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, 2008
In Harry Bosch's third outing, we finally get to learn more about the infamous case that resulted in Bosch's demotion to the Hollywood homicide unit. The Concrete Blonde is more of a legal thriller than a police procedural as the plot revolves around the widow of the serial killer shot by Bosch suing the LAPD. A wrench is thrown into Bosch's defense when more corpses matching the serial killer's MO pop up.

I enjoyed this book more than the first two in the series, although it still hasn't inched
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Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
**This was a goodreads/first reads giveaway. I would like to thank the author for the opportunity to read this book**

This is the first book by Michael Connelly I have read! I'm not sure why either, but it certainly won't be the last. This book is packed full of psychological craziness! The killer is a nutsy- cuckoo, but who isn't if your a killer right?

I loved the whole plot of this book and the turn it took. I did want to smack a few people but that is nothing new in a book for me!

**SPOILER**
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Gary
Dec 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
The 3rd book in the Harry Bosch series.
So glad I am reading the series in order, I am getting so into this series that I reading them 1 after another. Another great plot.
Jane Stewart
Aug 20, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-mystery
Trial parts boring but overall it was good.

2 ½ stars for the first half - too much of a victim feel. 4 stars for last half.

STORY BRIEF:
Four years earlier, a victim escaped from serial killer Church and called the police. Bosch took the call. He feared the killer might have another victim so there was no time to get backup. Bosch went to the room, told Church to freeze, but Church did not comply. He moved to get something under a pillow so Bosch shot and killed him. Bosch then discovered Church w
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Alex Cantone
Oct 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2017
“The Concrete Blonde” is one of the earlier Harry Bosch books, in which the LAPD detective is a walking ashtray, computers are in their infancy, the RHD uses Motorola radios but has not enough to go around, Harry carries a pager and finds a pay booth to make a call.

He is the defendant in a civil case, seeking damages for the widow of Norman Church, accused of being “The Dollmaker”, a serial killer of prostitutes, who Bosch shot and killed four years earlier when he broke into Church’s rented uni
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Marleen
Jul 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The Concrete Blonde is the 3rd Harry Bosch book, and let me say, it’s brilliant! The pace is outstanding, the dialogues are superb. The courtroom drama is top notch.
You can’t help but be fully captivated by this story because it’s so gritty and smart and it moves at a nice speed. With the first two Bosch books I often felt there were too much descriptives & scene-setting, too much background storytelling too. Here it's just enough to give the book depth but not as to bore the reader. What I also
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Emil Petersen
Jan 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
The best book in the series so far. A large portion of the book considers a court case revolving around Bosch and the Dollmaker serial-killer, and I found this part at least as good as the parallel investigation. An old case coming back to life, mysterious notes sent to the police, and dead bodies turning up all over again. It's all very mysterious, and it's not clear whether they got the right guy those years back.
So far the only thing that annoys me is the titles of the books. I do not like th
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Chrisl
Sep 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1990s, cal-nev, mys-cop
In series sequence, this was the first one I liked and soon re-read. The two "Black" books that started the series took a couple tries to get through.
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Play Book Tag: [Listopia] The Concrete Blonde by Michael Connelly (4 out of 5 Stars) 9 19 Aug 29, 2018 01:40PM  
Goodreads Librari...: New page count 2 14 Aug 26, 2018 03:29PM  
2-3-4 Challenge B...: Question #14 10 24 Feb 09, 2017 04:19PM  
2-3-4 Challenge B...: Question #17 8 15 May 01, 2016 12:17PM  
2-3-4 Challenge: The Concrete Blonde by Michael Connelly (Harry Bosch #3) - March 2016 11 14 Apr 28, 2016 11:24PM  
2-3-4 Challenge B...: Question #15 8 13 Mar 23, 2016 12:04PM  
2-3-4 Challenge B...: Question #18 15 13 Mar 23, 2016 02:12AM  

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21,492 followers
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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Other books in the series

Harry Bosch (1 - 10 of 22 books)
  • The Black Echo (Harry Bosch, #1; Harry Bosch Universe, #1)
  • The Black Ice (Harry Bosch, #2; Harry Bosch Universe, #2)
  • The Last Coyote (Harry Bosch, #4; Harry Bosch Universe, #4)
  • Trunk Music (Harry Bosch, #5; Harry Bosch Universe, #6)
  • Angels Flight (Harry Bosch, #6; Harry Bosch Universe, #7)
  • A Darkness More Than Night (Harry Bosch, #7; Terry McCaleb, #2; Harry Bosch Universe, #9)
  • City of Bones (Harry Bosch, #8; Harry Bosch Universe, #10)
  • Lost Light (Harry Bosch, #9; Harry Bosch Universe, #11)
  • The Narrows (Harry Bosch, #10; Harry Bosch Universe, #13)
  • The Closers (Harry Bosch, #11; Harry Bosch Universe, #14)

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