By Michael Connelly
Grand avocat de l. a. défense, Mickey Haller est bien surpris lorsque le procureur du comté de la le prie un jour de plaider pour l’accusation. Et l’affaire n’est pas des moindres.
Incarcéré depuis vingt-quatre ans pour le meurtre d’une fillette, Jason Jessup vient d’être libéré sous warning, le tribunal ayant conclu à l. a. nécessité d’une révision de son procès suite à un try out ADN qui semble l’innocenter.
Haller est sûr que Jessup est coupable et prend Harry Bosch comme enquêteur et son ex-épouse, Maggie McPherson, comme assistante. En face de lui, l’avocat Clive Royce, dit « l’astucieux », et des médias tout excités par ce procès : quoi de plus sensationnel qu’un tueur innocenté par son ADN ?
À ceci près que Jason Jessup, qui parade devant les médias le jour, se livre à d’étranges activités l. a. nuit
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Extra info for Volte-face
The gold I got out of Sam Hegg's mine ain't been more than about a hun- 45 How to Write a Damn Good Mystery 46 dred and fifty grand, total, and that ain't no lie. But I've been real careful not to do anything stupid like spend a lot in one place. I sell the nuggets off as I go— telling people I bought them at the bar off guys who bring it in. I'm content, a happy man. I blow my cool and have to beat the crap out of somebody once in a while when I'm acting as a deputy, or in the bar with some drunk, but most of the time I keep a lid on my temper.
I've been in the writing racket for a few decades now and, the horrible truth is, I've never been able to figure out what editors will find mildly interesting story-wise, let alone what will make them flip. I've heard other writers, agents, and even editors say that they know this trend is hot, this other trend is not; that Ideas to Get You Started small-town mysteries, say, are in, hard-boiled are out; that cross-genre books or some such are the next trend, the wave of the future. It's all a bunch of pap.
31 32 How to Write a Damn Good Mystery O u r murderer will be evil. We know a murderer is a mythic "evil one" and an evil one always acts out of his or her own self-interest. An evil one is the golden star at the center of his or her own universe. Our murderer will be self ish. Sure, we've all read books in which the murderer does the deed for a good cause, heroically, but this motif almost always results in a weak climax. " If the murderer is not acting out of his or her own self-interest and instead is self-sacrificing and acting heroically, the reader is robbed of this satisfaction, which is, after all, one of the principal reasons the reader bought the book in the first place.