(akemplaw.com, Nov. 22)
In 2005, Michael Connelly published The Lincoln Lawyer and introduced us to a new protagonist, Mickey Haller, notable at the time because he is not Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch, the star of most of Connelly’s excellent detective stories. Haller is the “Lincoln lawyer” in that first book because he conducts his criminal defense law practice out of the back of one or more of his chauffeured Lincolns. That suggests he’s rich, or eccentric, or both. In fact, Haller is not doing so well fiscally, and he’s better described as cynical and shrewd. His professional integrity is just slightly on the plus side of marginal. On the other hand, he is trying to be a good dad to his young daughter, who wants her parents to get back together.
Haller’s “chauffeur” in The Brass Verdict (2008) is a homeless surfer (all of Connelly’s books take place in the City of Angels) out on probation. In this latest adventure, Haller unexpectedly inherits a law practice when another leading defense attorney is murdered. One of Haller’s new clients is a wealthy Hollywood producer who is charged with killing his wife and her German lover. Not merely asserting his innocence, the producer is almost bizarrely confident that Mickey Haller can get him off. It doesn’t quite work out the way anyone expects, of course. Because Connelly is so good at creating characters, I encourage you to read The Lincoln Lawyer first, then The Brass Verdict, which debuted on the best seller lists at #1. As always with Connelly, these are good reads.