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Dark Sacred Night

Series: Renée Ballard, Book 2, Harry Bosch, Book 21
Length: 10 hrs and 39 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (848 ratings)

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Summary

At the end of a long, dark night Detectives Renée Ballard and Harry Bosch cross paths for the very first time.

Detective Renée Ballard is working the graveyard shift again and returns to Hollywood Station in the early hours only to find that an older man has snuck in and is rifling through old file cabinets. The intruder is none other than legendary LAPD detective Harry Bosch, working a cold case that has gotten under his skin.

Ballard kicks him out, but eventually Bosch persuades her to help, and she relents. Bosch is investigating the death of 15-year-old Daisy Clayton, a runaway who was brutally murdered. He crossed paths with her devastated mother while working a previous case, and Daisy's story has seized hold of him.

©2018 Michael Connelly (P)2018 Orion Publishing Group

Critic reviews

Praise for Connelly: "One of the world's greatest crime writers." (Daily Mail)

"A master of the genre." (Stephen King)

"Crime thriller writing of the highest order." (The Guardian)

What members say

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

One narrator too many

I like Michael Connelly books and this one is quite good but couldn't figure out why it had 2 narrators. Allthough sections are titled with each of the lead characters' names, the dialogue is mixed anyway. As audio books go, my opinion is that they either need to be read well or performed well (like a radio play). I did finish the book so will keep it but in future will be wary of getting a book with 2 narrators.

8 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Gaaaargh the narrator ruins it

Yes - okay - I understand that Connelly is trying to introduce a female perspective that carries up all the way to narrator. The books have always had amazing female characters in them, and Bosch's perspective towards women has always been masculine but very unlike the chauvinist archetype often associated with detectives. So yes - from a strategic perspective, introducing a female narrator to the mix makes sense. But on a practical, 'I have to listen to this' - this is not working. Christine Lakin's narration is forced, her accents are a joke, she emphasises the wrong things, muddies the narrative. I gave this multiple tries and I still couldn't really tell you what it was about. Find a better female narrator, guys! I can't say it plainer than that

9 people found this helpful

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Awful ruined by narrator

I am a massive fan of Michael Connelly and really looked forward to this book. Sadly it is completely ruined by Christine Larkin who sounds as if she has been on mogadon. It is truly awful. Probably the bits read by Titus Welliver are fine but I cannot get past the first two chapters. I am returning the audiobook and will get a kindle version. I can’t really comment on the plot because I cannot stand the narration. What a huge disappointment.

19 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Not one of his best

I wasn't so impressed by this book, Bosch seems to have lost his sparkle. I like Ballard and I think that maybe in future books they will be better together.

I didn't like the narration, there didn't see any point in changing from male to female narrators, I found this distracting, also distracting and uneccessary was the loud music at the beginning of the book!

8 people found this helpful

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Interesting way of bringing Bosch and Ballard together

I liked the story but I don’t think it was the best Bosch. I like the fact that Ballard is now working with him but I wish there could be a female detective without a tragic back story, messed up home life etc.

1 person found this helpful

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Very disappointed

I love Michael Connolly, but the dual narrative didn't work for me. I returned the book because I couldn't handle Christine Lakin's voice, the accents were inconsistent and laughable. This is Harry Bosch, you can't use a female to read his lines. It made him sound quite wimpy.

1 person found this helpful

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Great book but let titus read them please

Titus is a great actor and his voice now is just bosch for me. The female narrator ruined it for me and the switching made it distracting.

Please just use titus for these from now on. His voice is fantastic both on screen on amazon TV show and on audible.

1 person found this helpful

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Two short stories intertwind - badly

I was interested in how the 2 characters ( & narrators) would be handled - poorly in my view, but having finished the book, I understand the narration decision. The stories are 'skimmed' with no real mystery and some big unanswered questions. I also read the Bosch involvement and it wasn't him, his detective work and actions were out of character. The book didn't work.

Narration wise, it was lazy, almost monotoned and one-paced. There were 2 life-threatening scenes, both were given in the same fashion as them having a coffee.

1 person found this helpful

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A great story - Spoiled by Christine Lakin

A great story, as expected. Titus Welliver brilliant, as expected.

The voice of Christine Lakin was irritating and spoiled my enjoyment. I had to try listening to it a few times before I got used to the voice.

Please, please, please let Titus Welliver read the whole thing.

1 person found this helpful

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Awesome again

Another quality story from the master. Love this. The narration is good and love the mix of female and male.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Lia
  • 01-11-18

Michael Connelly Never Dissapoints

Harry is as human as he has ever been. I was born the same year as the Bosch of the books so I can relate to his sore knees and his slowing down and his doubting his sharpness. In contrast we have the much younger Renée Ballard whose sharp skills complement Bosch. The development of the mutual trust between them was a bit surprising to me but very satisfying.
I love it most when there is a new episode of the old Bosch, that is, a new novel. This one is everything I want to think and feel about the Harry Bosch I have come to know over more than 20 installments.

I have mixed feeling regarding the narration. Both narrators were good but together it made the story feel a bit disjointed. Stick with Titus he was the better of the two.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Glenn
  • 01-12-18

Lady Narrator Kills It

Having read every Harry Bosch novel this is the first letdown. Titus Welliver is great as usual but not the women. Hopefully Michael Connelly will go back to only Titus next.

2 people found this helpful

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  • John Tinsley
  • 06-11-18

A terrible disappointment.

Wow. A new Michael Connelly. Bosch and Ballard. I was so looking forward to this. I'm sure it's a great story, as Connelly hasn't let me down yet. But I'll have to get a paper copy to find out, as the reading is terrible. I simply could not listen all the way through. Using a male/female combo this way is merely a gimmick. It might have worked if Christine had read the female speaking parts, but no. When will directors realise that women simply cannot do males voices? Furthermore, breaking the book up into segments means that neither reader gets involved. They are merely reading aloud, they are not telling a story.

I have never returned a Michael Connelly book. I AM returning this one. It is not worth the listening effort. I'll get the kindle version instead.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Susan
  • 02-11-18

Narration is woeful

I have had all the Harry Bosch books from Audible and thoroughly enjoy them, and was eagerly awaiting this latest book. I am not sure why there has been a change in the narration of the Harry Bosch series, but Christine Lakin is terrible as the voice of Harry Bosch, plus most of the other male voices she just doesn't have the range and cadence to pull of a male voice. I am sorry for that, but instead of Titus Welliver's great voice as Harry Bosch, plus his ability with all other voices, when Christine is narrating he sounds like a 30something future trader on Wall Street, all seduction, it is just awful. I couldn't get passed the first chapter. Will be seeking a refund and will go out and buy the book and pretend it is Titus doing the narration. Completely spoiled the book for me. I am sorry for this review.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Zard
  • 28-02-19

What a waste

of time and money: Even though this book introduces a new character (Renée Ballard) to the Harry Bosch series, it seems artificial and constructed. The characters are going thorugh the motions (relentless outcast, cop instinct, stupid solo actions, some personal favors are called in, tadaa day saved). No suspense whatsoever - you even know who the killer is ahead of time because it so effin obvious. I wish I had stopped with the series before this one.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mark
  • 03-03-20

A welcome return to the Bosh series after a long

A welcome return to the Bosh series after a long absence. This book introduces a great new character into the Bosch series and signals more great stories to come. Harry is kidnapped and nearly killed by gang members while also working on an unsolved nine year old abduction and murder case. Fortunately his new partner saves his life and he returns the favour later in the book. This was a top tier effort and I look forward to the next one.

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  • Mike Williamson
  • 17-12-19

Classic Bosch if a little predictable

A classic Michael Connelly novel, full of great procedural stuff, understandable jargon and action. Some of the outcomes were a little predictable (I don’t mean the plot - so no spoilers here), but hey, this is a Bosch story so it goes with the territory.

I have to admit, I could do without the dramatic music though. This is an audio book, not a movie and I don’t need anything to set the scene except the unabridged words, which were well voiced by Welliver and Lakin.

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  • Taran Sahota
  • 19-06-19

amazing as always cant wait for next one

Michael Connelly is the best author i have ever read. Titus did good work as well.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Victoria
  • 22-12-18

Conflicting feelings, but a great story

There is no other Harry Bosch than Titus Welliver, and yes - Christine Lakin might not have been the best match, at times her voice sounds monotonous seemingly lacking the modulation.
But here she is a young female detective, stuck in a graveyard shift because she dared to challenge the status quo. It would just be wrong to dismiss Lakin's performance, she has done it well as far as her character is concerned, keeping a steady beat to it.
I have conflicting feelings about the narrating, but I have no intention of returning the book.

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  • Mark
  • 18-12-18

Excellent

Nice to see the new character and Harry Bosch together Good story. Hope there are more of them together.

1 person found this helpful