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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 (154 ratings)

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Publisher's 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

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Lia
  • Sutton, Australia
  • 11-01-18

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.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

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.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Excellent

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

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

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.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Awesome!

Great story that really seem plausible. Great performances as well by both readers. I strongly recommends it if you are into detective stories!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Susan
  • Springvale, Australia
  • 11-02-18

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.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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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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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

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.

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  • Victoria
  • New York, NY United States
  • 12-22-18

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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LIVED UP TO EXPECTATION

I downloaded this hesitantly after reading all the negative comments about the narration and lack of cohesion. I'm glad I purchased regardless. I really enjoyed the two different characters and narrators and connected with both. I loved the impression that I was looking at events from both their perspectives and although I've loved all Michael Connelly and in particular Harry Bosch books, it was a welcome change. Can't wait for (hopefully) the next in the series.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Max
  • 11-28-18

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

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Andrea Edan
  • 11-26-18

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.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Jamie Mackay
  • 10-31-18

Awesome again

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

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • christopher
  • 10-30-18

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.

18 of 22 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • mollyeyre
  • 10-31-18

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 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Flappy Paddles
  • 04-25-19

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 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Paul J.
  • 12-30-18

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 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • James Carr
  • 05-21-19

Superb

I'm a fan of Bosch - I've read all of the books and am currently enjoying the very well made series on Amazon Prime. I was about 10 books into the series before seeing the TV show, and initially, Titus Welliver wasn't how I'd pictured Bosch. I've been swayed by the show and I now see Titus and Bosch as inseparable. This is one of my favourite books in the series and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of listening to Titus Welliver tell it. I would be very happy to listen to more of the series if they became available with him as the narrator. I also very much enjoyed listening to Christine Lakin - I thought she did a great job with Renée's character and for me, the format of trading off between the two narrators really worked.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • sonia
  • 05-03-19

Not his best

I generally love his books but tbh this isn’t one of the best I’ve read. I think it was the narrators...I normally listen without stopping apart from sleeping but tbh I left this for days listened to another book before I went back to this one. Maybe if it there were different narrators especially the female one it would have been better.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • AReader
  • 04-22-19

A good listen ...


However I am increasingly uneasy about a number of questions. Bosch listens to his obsessions, not to reason- will this ultimately end in disaster? Is he getting just a bit too weird? Are there too many dramatic last minute rescues in this book?

As a dog owner I thought it was unfair of Ballard to keep her dog in care so much and it must also have been very expensive! Could she afford it?

CAn LA really be as dreadful as it is pictured? Is it really full of gangs and murderers? If so what does this say about the US? How can its gun culture ever be addressed? Likewise its reliance on the car - a massive part of everyone’s life in LA which is almost a character of its own in the story, hiding in plain sight.

The voices are good, but I noticed a number of places where the narrators gave a false emphasis which altered the meaning.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-05-18

Harry Bosch never lets you down

As usual Michael Connelly captures the essence of working the force and the night shift, its great to see Old Harry doing his best work and the story is entertaining and capturing your imagination. You never get board with this author as his research is fantactic and accurate. I cant wait to hear what will become of the invincible Harry Bosch.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kerri Warner
  • 05-31-19

great book

As usual, I really enjoyed this book from the Bosch series. prefer the male voice.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-17-19

not his best

it was ok not one of his best read it for yourself and see what you think

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  • Janette
  • 03-02-19

Loved it

Thoroughly enjoyed this book.i had returned the first Ballard book but think I will re buy it.

Great narration by both narrators although it did take a while to get use to the second Bosch voice.

Great storyline and I am looking forward to the next edition

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  • Bernard
  • 02-04-19

Another Connelly Classic.

Hieronymus Bosch delivers again. Just when you think Michael would have run out of brilliant storylines for Bosch, he comes up with another gripping plot.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-02-19

Great book, loved Titus Wellever narrating.

this book had a great story and pace. Can always rely on Michael Connelly to entertain...

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Cameron
  • 01-17-19

Michael Connelly turns 3rd wave feminist

This isn't a Bosch story as you know it, it's three quarters Renée Ballard with a side serve of Bosch.

If you want the old Bosch with the department politics and well written and plot twisting immersion, well described detective who lives at the the diners and loves his jazz, look elsewhere.

Connelly goes SJW with this one, painting men in a bad light at every opportunity. Regardless of this the story is pretty shallow anyway, with a ending which smacks of dead line to meet.

I've read all the Bosch and other characters and this is Connelly's poorest work. He'd be better off ending Harry if reading Bosch stories are going to become a political statement from the author.

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  • Andrew Smailes
  • 01-13-19

Great story. Very well written and narrated.

We will be looking forward to the sequals. Very well written and narrated. Good company on our road trip.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • JennyRay
  • 01-09-19

Great Book

loved it. Kept me going from beginning to the last word. Can thoroughly recommend it.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-05-19

Average - Just

Not the usual Bosch standard. Not sure I liked the interplay between Bosch and Ballard. Harry seems to be going more rogue than good guy who stretches the rules. Storyline was a little contrived and drawn out. Was ok but if I’d never read another Bosch/Connelly book, this wouldn’t encourage me to pick up another.