Michael Connelly (right) was in town a couple of weeks ago, on a promo tour for THE DROP, his latest offering featuring Harry Bosch, and a very great pleasure it was to meet with him for the purpose of interview, which appeared on Saturday in the Irish Examiner, especially as Connelly qualifies as an Irish crime writer under FIFA’s grandparent ruling, and was good enough to pen a short foreword to DOWN THESE GREEN STREETS. Nice. Anyway, on the with the interview, which opens up a lot like this:
BE CAREFUL where you stash your guns, people. You might just be corrupting an impressionable 16-year-old.For the rest, clickety-click here …
Michael Connelly is the Irish-American author of 26 novels, the latest of which is The Drop, featuring his iconic Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) detective Harry Bosch.
From our vantage point in the plush environs of the Merrion Hotel, where the softly spoken Connelly sips tea in front of a blazing log fire, his ascent to literary superstardom, via numerous awards and critical acclaim, seems in retrospect inevitable. And yet, had the teenage Connelly not spotted a man acting suspiciously as he hid something in a bush, the world would never have heard of Connelly’s best-selling creations, which include Hieronymous ‘Harry’ Bosch, Mickey Haller and Jack McEvoy.
“I was from a middle- to upper-class background,” says Connelly, “more middle-class pretending to be upper, probably, so I had no real experience at all of the police. I loved reading crime novels and stuff like that, but this was like, ‘Wow!’. It was suddenly real life. And it wasn’t so much the crime part, finding the gun in the bush and all that.
“What left a real resonance was the night I spent with the detectives, and comparing them to detectives I’d read about. A lot of my reading was stuff handed to me by my mother, so I was going from PD James to a real PD squad-room. And that opened my eyes a little bit.
“In your life as a writer,” he reflects, “certain things have to happen, and sometimes it freaks you out a bit to go back and think, ‘What if that didn’t happen, or that.’ That moment had to happen for me to become a writer, because I was someone who’d been dropped into school in the middle of the year, and had no friends, and I became something of an introvert, which led me to read. So that was the first step. And then just happening to see this guy hide something in a bush had to happen. And then, later, I had to go see The Long Goodbye by Robert Altman at the dollar movie night at college. I didn’t have to go to that movie, that particular night. So all these elements of chance add up.”