Book Review: The Lincoln Lawyer Himself Is Charged With Murder

The Law of Innocence is a suspense novel from Michael Connelly and features the wily Lincoln Lawyer, Mickey Haller. Haller finds himself on the wrong side of the defense table when he is charged with the murder of a former client who owed him money. His usual team of lawyers and investigators come to his aid. His half-brother, retired LAPD detective Harry Bosch, enters the fray. Haller finds himself at the center of a conspiracy as well. He decides to take his case to trial as soon as he can, but he finds himself in a race against a mysterious virus from China that threatens to bring the world to a halt. Haller is going for the gold, complete exoneration from the charges that would be well beyond just a verdict of not guilty. He might be tenacious and clever enough to pull it off.

Connelly works in a bit of current events with the beginnings of the COVID lockdowns lurking in the background. The story itself seems a little far-fetched with the unorthodox court proceedings. Haller still ends up being compelling enough for the reader to root for him. Bosch ends up helping without taking the story over, which is understandable. That makes sense since the Lincoln Lawler novels are written in first person narrative. Haller can sometimes be seen as very clever and somewhat underhanded. There was one thing about Haller’s reaction to his circumstances I respected. He did not have all that much doubt in his abilities. He had a few moments of uncertainty, but he stayed in the game during the court scenes. It was also pretty heartwarming to see his interactions with his daughter during his plight.

It just seems to be a little too self-indulgent and unlikely to have Haller himself accused of murder, but Connelly still writes it well enough and seems to stay true to his creation. Plus, it’s kind of fun to have Bosch and Haller work together, although Bosch had a more periphery role in this one. The story is enjoyable and interesting enough for me to not experience any resentment. Connelly still manages to remain deserving of the acclaim and appreciation of his fanbase, however just the notion of Haller having to defend himself against a murder charge just feels somewhat predictable. I am so glad Erle Stanley Gardner resisted the idea of having Perry Mason in a similar situation.

The next read is going to be quite the departure from my usual literary flavor. I had vowed to start reading a few considered classics. I am about to find out what was discovered during Gulliver’s Travels as told by Jonathan Swift.

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