Crime Beat Review
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Before Michael Connelly became the #1 New York Times Bestseller for his Harry Bosch police procedural novels, he wrote as a crime reporter, covering the homicide beat. The collection of articles contained within Crime Beat are every bit as interesting and suspenseful as his fiction novels. In fact, a lot of his fiction novels are inspired by true events.

Mr. Connelly introduces you to the cops who deal in death and mayhem every day they’re on the job. You’ll go inside the mind of murderers and serial killers, feel the pain of the victims’ families, and read chilling cases where the perpetrators are considered evil to the bone. This is not fiction, and that’s what makes this collection of true crime stories so frightening. Some of the stories that had follow-up stories will sound a little repetitive—because aspects of the crime had to be repeated each time, so newspaper readers who might have missed an earlier article would know what was going on. But each story is so good that you’ll hardly notice it, and if you do, you probably won’t be all that bothered by it.

My favorite among the stories, “The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight,” had more of a humorous bent to it. They were a gang of losers, social outcasts, and law enforcement washouts who advertised their expertise in the want ads. However, they weren’t very good at it and missed their targets more than once, and they didn’t really seem to care if they got caught. They tried to kill one poor guy by coming at him with machine guns, bombs, and stun guns, but they still managed not to make the hit. And one woman was just too pretty for them to kill, so they hung it up and went home. Assassination wasn’t their only skill, but someone was always looking to have someone else murdered. Lovely, huh?

This collection is sure to keep you interested and wanting to read just one more before lights-out. I had to force myself to close the book so I could get some sleep—and then I couldn’t wait until my regular reading time to pick up Crime Beat once again and read more.

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