Author of the Month
Micheal Connelly [oct 2010]
Chosen by MyShelf.Com reviewer and HYH interviewer Elise Cooper

 

I chose Michael Connelly as aom because of his ability to speak for crime victims. Through his character's eyes and intriguing plots readers understand the issues a victim and their families must go through day in and day out. His latest book, The Reversal, does this as well as being very insightful into how the legal system works. The story is suspenseful, engrossing, and a quick read.

 


Interview

Michael Connelly is a New York Times bestselling author. His latest book, The Reversal, confronts the disparities in America’s legal system. This novel brings back defense attorney Mickey Haller, who now wears a different suit. He will be the prosecutor in a high profile case about a brutal child murder. The convicted killer gets a re-trial based on new DNA evidence which would overturn his 24 year conviction.


Myshelf: Did you want to convey to the reader how our legal system works?

Michael Connelly: To me these stories start with the character and how you want to use him or her. I use Mickey to show a look at the justice system from down in crevices. But I don't presume this is the whole picture.

 

Myshelf: Can you explain the quote, “I wish I could forget him. But I can’t. He’s always there in the back of my mind. In the shadows.” Were you trying to get across the mentality of those who lost loved ones in a horrific act?

Michael Connelly: It does seem like it speaks to the kind of never-ending mourning that occurs when a loved one is lost to violence.

 

Myshelf: “Everybody has one person out there. One bullet. And if you’re lucky in life, you get to meet that person. And once you do, once you’re shot through the heart, then there’s nobody else. No matter what happens-nobody else can ever come close. That’s the single bullet theory.” Can you explain how you came up with this great quote? What was your inspiration?

Michael Connelly: My wife first postulated the idea to me. I have chain around my neck with a bullet on it. Has her name on it. She gave it to me. It came from there, the idea being that no relationship is perfect but some I think you know are meant to go the distance no matter what.

 

Myshelf: You seem to have a recurring theme in your book: that those who died need a voice. In the book you state, "We are here today about one thing. To speak for someone who can no longer speak for herself.” In my interviews with 9/11 families they have stated the same point to me. Is there a specific point you want the reader to understand?

Michael Connelly: I think the point is that as a society we can't let this sort of violence go by. If we do we have given up. I think in the book some people might ask why take the guy to trial after 24 years. Isn't enough, enough? But there are no little murders. Every one sends out a wave of change through space and time. It's important as a society that we remember victims and avenge them with justice. That certainly is speaking for them.

 

Myshelf: Did you write this book to spur interest in the differences between a defense attorney and prosecutor’s psyche?

Michael Connelly: No, I love the character of Mickey Haller and so I was looking for a way of bringing him back in a book but in a new and hopefully interesting way. I try to write from a basis of reality. The reality is that defense attorney's rarely have a completely innocent client. So I can't write a bunch of Haller books where the client is innocent. It's not reality. So I need to come up with alternate ideas that still show him and his skills off in court. This was one of them.

 

Myshelf: Since you write such descriptive characters, that are very likeable/unlikeable, is that how you try to get your story across?

Michael Connelly: Well, certainly I hope the characters are what carry the story. I want the readers to be riding with my protagonist and enjoyed the trip even though they don't know where the car is going to take them.

 

Myshelf: Rachel Walling made a cameo appearance. Do you plan on doing a standalone book with her?

Michael Connelly: I would love to do a book like that but it would be a challenge. So I don't want to try until I have the right story and so far that hasn't come to me. But the minute I know that this is the story, I will write that book.

 

Myshelf: What is your next project?

Michael Connelly: I am back at it with Mickey Haller again. Mickey has moved into an area of foreclosure defense because it is the growth industry in law. But one case leads him back to the criminal side and before he knows it he's defending a 5-foot-3 school teacher in a murder case where she is accused of killing the banker trying to take her house away. The working title is The Fifth Witness and the pub date is April 5, 2011


Reviews:

Read Elise's review of The Reversal


Websites:

Michael Connelly.com

2010's Honorary List

 

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