The Dark Hours: Popular detective novel author Michael Connelly disappoints again

The esteemed author of the Harry Bosch novels, Michael Connelly, has increasingly become political and not in a good way.  His last book, The Law of Innocence, was shamelessly anti-Trump, which enraged at least half of his loyal readers.  Have a look at the customer reviews on Amazon.

Connelly's new book, Dark Hours, is one of his Detective Renee Ballard stories.  Bosch is in it but not nearly enough.  This new book does mildly address the demoralization of the Los Angeles Police Department, admits that the department is now reactive, no longer pro-active.  The L.A. police, like departments in other blue cities, have been defunded by the radical, anti-police city and state governments that run them.  Connelly gets the enervation cops feel.  They are stretched thin, as the rise in crime in the city demonstrates.. Sadly, about half of the older cops in the book are misogynists, anti-victim, anti-work, pro–a rigidly adherence to rules that now favor the criminals.

Ballard is a likeable character, a good cop, but this is a grim tale of an increasingly grim city, overrun by homeless people, shoplifters, looters, carjackers, and gangs flush with the fentanyl from China that Biden has opened the border to as well as the trafficking of children and young women that the Biden administration has revitalized.  President Trump had put a serious dent in the human-trafficking that is an inhumane scourge throughout the world.  Biden is in business with the drug cartels.  They are raking in millions of dollars a day, and Biden is helping them by facilitating the entry into the U.S. of nearly two million illegal migrants who have paid the cartels to get them here.  They make more money shipping them to cities around the country.  Into whose care are they being released or sold?  No one knows as they are flown into their new locales in the dead of night, picked up by buses to be taken somewhere.  But into whose custody?

Connelly might have addressed all this hell that is raining down on Los Angeles by anti-police leaders, including the Soros-installed district attorney, George Gascon.  Gascon is as bad as San Francisco's Chesa Boudin.  Both men are pro-criminal, anti-victim.  They consider shoplifting and looting to be a form of entitled reparations.  Responsible for all of this chaos and crime are the absurd policies that govern cities run by leftists these days — political correctness; Critical Race Theory; Diversity, Equity & Inclusion; and the promotion of any and all LGBT issues and causes have rendered law-abiding citizens easy prey.  The criminals know there will be no consequences for their bad acts.  The put-upon heroine of Dark Hours does her best, but she is foiled at every turn, condemned, demoted, or suspended by her department for her pro-victim actions.

The last book was sprinkled throughout with the author's obvious anti-Trump sentiments.  This one is chock-full of his fear of COVID.  There is hardly a page without the word "mask" on it.  Detective Ballard is terrified of COVID.  And the Harry we know and love would never have submitted to the vaccine so early in the rollout, a drive-thru at Dodger Stadium.  Bosch is characteristically cautious and wise.  Bosch would have questioned the safety of an experimental, emergency-authorized vaccine. 

It is clear that Connelly bemoans the decimation of his beloved LAPD, but he blatantly ignores the causes.  He could have used this book to lay out exactly how it has come to be so dispirited.  He might have written about the planned and well supplied riots, the arson and looting of the summer of 2020 and how the police were told to stand down, ordered to defer to BLM and Antifa.  He could have mentioned that it is Soros money that recruits and pays the rioters and pre-places the pallets of bricks to throw at cops and businesses.  Few, if any, of these vandals were arrested and charged with the crimes they committed.  The same is true all over the country.  Kamala Harris mounted a fund to get them all released if they were charged.  Connelly could have alluded to the feckless mayor of L.A., Eric Garcetti, soon to be Biden's ambassador to India.  Hmmm.  Garcetti has been an ineffective mayor, as anti-police as every other leftist mayor in leftist-run cities.

Connelly has millions of readers, many of whom may not fully grasp what has brought about the demise of Los Angeles and other cities with pro-criminal leaders: San Francisco, Chicago, NYC, Baltimore, St. Louis, Minneapolis, etc.  Crime is up; murders are way up in all of them.  In NYC, a BLM leader is threatening violence if the new mayor, Eric Adams, tries reform the NYC police and bring back the highly efficient plainclothes detail. 

Those who have the resources to leave are fleeing California.  At least two hundred thousand Californians have fled the state over the past two years.  Families who have grown up in these cities are finding themselves strangers in their own neighborhoods.

The two storylines in Dark Hours, both involving murders, could have exposed the numerous reasons for the demise of Los Angeles.  But Connelly avoided even the merest hint as to the causes.  This book begins on New Year's Eve 2020, but he never once mentions BLM or Antifa, the riots, or the millions of dollars in damage to L.A. businesses.  He does, however, allude to the "mob" that breached the Capitol on January 6 and the killing of a cop there.  He might have done a final edit: on the contrary, the only person killed that day was an unarmed woman shot to death by a Capitol cop.

So Connelly ameliorated his averred antipathy for President Trump but still could not bring himself to tell the truth about what has happened to police departments throughout the nation.  He avoided any race aspects within and without the LAPD.  Radical, anti-American, anti–law enforcement leftists with power are ruining major cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, and NYC.  Connelly could have educated his millions of readers as to exactly why all this has happened to our formerly great cities, but he punted.

Novels are meant to be entertaining, but a writer like Connelly has the readership and massive power to educate.  He could have addressed the lacuna in this book with a few sentences, carefully placed here and there, but he did not.  Disappointed! 

LAPD Image via Public Domain Pictures.

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