Detective Renée Ballard is the new kid on the block of fictional detectives as best-selling author Michael Connelly adds a woman to his previous boys’ club’s series with Harry Bosch and Mickey Haller. The Late Show introduces Ballard as a determined woman, penalized by a former supervisor for filing sexual harassment charges against him, now working the midnight shift in the Hollywood division of the Los Angeles Police Department. The frustrating component of the current job set-up is that cases picked up during Ballard’s shift are continued and concluded by detectives on the day shift. Not what she wants as a detective on the rise.
Two new cases flip Ballard’s work schedule though. One night she catches the case of a badly beaten prostitute and later a nightclub shooting with five dead, including a waitress to whom Ballard finds herself attached in an investigation she wants to continue. And she does. Actually, she continues with both cases. The prostitute has fallen into a coma and Ballard gets official approval to investigate further on her own during the day. Unofficially, she also investigates murder off the clock, and bucks the orders of department supervisors. The results are very surprising, and personally extremely dangerous for the detective.
The novel, released last year to critical praise, continues Connelly’s bestseller streak of books and Ballard will return in print October 2018. She will team up with crime fiction favorite Harry Bosch in Dark Scared Night.