My fortnightly summary of what I’ve been reading and listening to.
Again, although I’ve been reading a fair bit over the last fortnight, I have completed very little in the period, in fact, only one book.
Last time I also complained about a change Lexcycle had made to their e-book reader Stanza. They’ve now fixed it; or at least, made it possible to adjust the delay before bringing up their new Dictionary feature. The problem for them is that in the interval I explored the Palm eReader app from Fictionwise and have decided that I like it more. I may do a comparative review of the two pieces of software shortly here or on www.Teleread.org, a great site I recently discovered which deals with news and opinion about e-books.
I’m also uneasy that Lexcycle have now been bought out by Amazon, producers of the Kindle and also owners of Audible. What this means for the future of e-books, I don’t know, but I don’t think it’s good and I am rather concerned. More on this another time.
In what follows and in all my writings about audiobooks, the word ‘read’ also includes the sense ‘listened to’. Pity there’s no English word which covers both.
Trunk Music by Michael Connelly.
Audiobook from Audible.
I’ve been reading and enjoying the series of novels based around Connelly’s hard-boiled L.A. cop Harry (Hieronymous) Bosch for several years now. The problem is that, what with getting hold of them erratically either from the local library or as they are made available via Audible (or not, see my post Divide and Conquer), I’ve read them completely out of sequence, which has made my understanding of the life-story of Bosch a backwards-and-forwards kind of thing, making me feel a bit like Vonnegut’s character Billy Pilgrim who ‘had come unstuck in time’.
However you piece together Harry Bosch’s story, he’s a fascinating character who seems generally on the side of the good guys, but has an occasional unpleasantly violent streak and a strong tendency to break the rules and go his own way.
Connelly’s stories about Bosch are full of lots of local L.A. detail which I can only presume to be authentic (never having been to that city). And he certainly knows how to spin a yarn.
This one starts with the discovery of an abandoned Rolls Royce with a body in the boot, and the trail leads to organised crime figures in Los Vegas. Typically, however, that’s not where the story ends, as Bosch both tries to unravel the details and to cope with his re-encounter with an old flame.
It’s this relationship which threw me into Billy Pilgrim territory, because I’ve read later novels in the series where this relationship has developed in an unexpected direction, and I feel I’m still missing several pieces of the jigsaw.
I highly recommend “Trunk Music” and the rest of the Bosch series, though with a warning that you have to have to occasionally have a strong stomach for violence and descriptions of gore.