- Published: 2003
- Number of pages: 528 pages
- Format: Epub
- File Size: 0.59 MB
- Authors: Michael Connelly
Death is reporter Jack McEvoy’s beat: his calling, his obsession. But this time, death brings McEvoy the story he never wanted to write–and the mystery he desperately needs to solve. A serial killer of unprecedented savagery and cunning is at large. His targets: homicide cops, each haunted by a murder case he couldn’t crack. The killer’s calling card: a quotation from the works of Edgar Allan Poe. His latest victim is McEvoy’s own brother. And his last…may be McEvoy himself.
Amazon.com Review Jack McEvoy is a Denver crime reporter with the stickiest assignment of his career. His twin brother, homicide detective Sean McEvoy, was found dead in his car from a self-inflicted bullet wound to the head–an Edgar Allen Poe quote smeared on the windshield. Jack is going to write the story. The problem is that Jack doesn’t believe that his brother killed himself, and the more information he uncovers, the more it looks like Sean’s death was the work of a serial killer. Jack’s research turns up similar cases in cities across the country, and within days, he’s sucked into an intense FBI investigation of an Internet pedophile who may also be a cop killer nicknamed the Poet. It’s only a matter of time before the Poet kills again, and as Jack and the FBI team struggle to stay ahead of him, the killer moves in, dangerously close. In a break from his Harry Bosch novels–including The Concrete Blonde and The Last Coyote–Edgar-winning novelist Michael Connelly creates a new hero who is a lot greener but no less believable. The Poet will keep readers holding their breath until the very end: the characters are multilayered, the plot compelling, and the denouement a true surprise. Connelly fans will not be disappointed. –Mara Friedman From Publishers Weekly In a departure from his crime novels featuring LAPD’s Harry Bosch, Connelly (The Last Coyote) sets Denver journalist Jack McEvoy on an intricate case where age-old evils come to flower within Internet technology. Jack’s twin brother, Sean, a Denver homicide detective obsessed with the mutilation murder of a young woman, is discovered in his car, dead of an apparently self-inflicted gunshot, with a cryptic note written on the windshield. Jack’s investigation uncovers a series of cop suicides across the country, all of which have in common both the cops’ deep concerns over recent cases and their last messages, which have been taken, he quickly determines, from the writings of Edgar Allan Poe. As his information reopens cases in Chicago, Baltimore, Dallas, New Mexico and Florida, Jack joins up with a team from the FBI’s Behavioral Science Section, which includes sharp, attractive agent Rachel Walling. Connections between the dead cops, the cases they were working on and the FBI profile of a pedophile whom readers know as William Gladden occur at breakneck speed, as Jack and the team race to stay ahead of the media. Edgar-winning Connelly keeps a surprise up his sleeve until the very end of this authoritatively orchestrated thriller, when Jack finds himself in California, caught at the center of an intricate web woven from advanced computer technology and more elemental drives. Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Reviews from Amazon users, collected at the time the book is getting published on UniedVRG. It can be related to shiping or paper quality instead of the book content:
⭐ THE POET By Michael ConnellyMY REVIEW FIVE STARS*****I finished reading this classic novel early Saturday morning, and it may say something about my status as a party animal, but this book was what I will remember most about the July 4th Holiday. It was a re-read of course. I read it when it was originally published in the mid-90’s, and it made a lasting impression on me. I was a seasoned reader of mysteries, police procedurals, and psychological suspense thrillers even back then, and I recognized that THE POET was truly something special, a story that was destined to be ultimately classified as a timeless literary triumph.I must confess that I have been a devoted Michael Connelly fan for literally decades. His writing style is absolutely addictive, and it is dark, visceral, matter-of-fact, yet truly poetic at other times. In THE POET the reader is able to glean a true picture of journalism as a career choice in general and what it truly means to be a crime reporter in particular. Obviously, Connelly was an award-winning journalist before he became a household name and a Best-Selling Author known all over the globe. He actually worked the crime beat in LA, and it is my opinion that when a writer pens a story about what he has actually experienced, “what he knows”, that the authenticity of the narrative veritably leaps off the pages. The main protagonist in THE POET, Jack McEvoy, is a Crime Reporter. His character is well developed in the novel, and he is a sympathetic hero despite his self-awareness about his own flaws and weaknesses in the dog-eat-dog world of journalism. I liked Jack, and he was portrayed as a flesh and blood man with insecurities that humanized him in my eyes. His relationship with the beautiful Rachel Walling showcased Jack’s flaws but simultaneously provided the reader with a convincing tale that read as much like a true crime novel as it did fiction.Rachel Walling was similarly a likeable heroine, albeit her character while having depth was not fleshed out as fully as the main protagonist Jack McEvoy’s. There is really no superlatives that would be over-the-top for this unforgettable chase for a devious serial killer. In my mind, it is truly an unforgettable, “unputdownable”, and timeless classic psychological thriller. It is a hybrid that contains elements of a mystery novel as well as a gritty crime procedural.It is interesting to note that at the time THE POET was published in 1996 that Connelly had released only four Harry Bosch Books if I am figuring this correctly. THE POET was a promise that Michael Connelly was truly a master story teller with an addictive writing style capable of greatness as an author. The ensuing years would see that early promise fulfilled many times over.
⭐ Prepare to be played like a violin in Michael Connelly’s THE POET as he strings you along from page one to its ambiguous conclusion.No Harry Bosch or Mickey Haller making an appearance in this one, just Jack McEvoy a reporter for the Rocky Mountain News who has just learned that his twin brother Sean, a Denver homicide detective has been found dead in his car – an apparent suicide. The suicide note is perplexing and Jack is certain that this is not a suicide. Of course, no self-respecting crime reporter would fail to investigate on his own and Jack’s mission is personal. His investigation uncovers a nationwide succession of recent cop suicides all which contain one sentence notes quoting from the writings of Edgar Allan Poe.The plot thickens – the FBI gets involved – and the chase is on. Any further information would ruin the rest of the story – – and far be it for me to ruin another readers joy of discovery.
⭐ I have read a number of Connelly’s books, most for relaxation and a break from academic monographs and literature, This turned out to be the best that I can recall. The characters were new and more interesting/complex, especially there interactions with one another. The plot was multi-dimensional, so that the readers like the characters are trying to figure out what is happening. It was a real page turner that keeps of reader engaged, anxious to see what happens next. Unlike many “page-turners” I didn’t want to skim ahead to get to the end because the detail and portrayals were so interesting. The Poet: A Novel
⭐ One of my pet peeves as a reader is feeling like the author has taken the cheap tack of a “surprise” ending that was really totally out of left field. I don’t like being toyed with, and finding out that a primary character is The Big Bad without even so much as a hint prior to the reveal pissed me off. This was especially frustrating because the initial hook of a well-known poet to a fascinating predator dynamic made me hope for so much more, despite the banality of the beautiful woman seducing the (rather pathetic) narrator. There was also a long scene involving a Marlboro Man billboard that was memorable for being so random and unnecessary. Sigh. I wanted to like this, truly I did.
⭐ No spoilers.FYI – while it is a mystery containing murders the descriptions of crime scenes are not particularly gory or extreme.Love to read and over the past ten, twelve years I’ve picked up most of the Connelly books, Bosch, McEvoy, Haller, Terry McCaleb… all deeply developed and somewhat troubled characters (just to name a few). Their personal struggles entwine with whatever the story line is about and adds greatly to the read. I’ve read Spillane, John D MacDonald, Ross MacDonald (Lew Archer was excellent) and so many others. All fine authors. I won’t say that Connelly tops them, and frankly I don’t think he does or they him, but his writing is gripping (the Bosch series on Amazon is excellent and that’ Bosch seems to be a bit more prescient than the books Bosch character but that is just perhaps TV) and as many have said ‘hard to put down’. The POET is simply outstanding work with excellent character development, complex and intriguing stories within the ‘story’ that leaves you almost a bit breathless… and a finale that resonates with all the needed ingredients of great crime novels! This is one of the best reads in this reader’s long line of fine authors.
⭐ What is going on with all those stupid policemen, FBI, and the whole lot of civilians? It seems that one cannot find a book where the hero is not an appalling individual that you just cannot bring yourself to sympathize with? This particular one – total A-hole. And on the top of it all, I really do not want to read about his love/sex life. Ugh!
⭐ The best I can say that this vintage Connolly is all right. As expected, it was decently written with an intriguing plot. To my disappointment, it was another first-person account that removes some tension and allows a few conventional easy outs such as the narrator misinterpreting events which is a difficult literary convention to pull off in a third-person narrative.While the book starts out as an unfortunately over the top pastiche of the laughable 40s noir hardboiled detective novels, it calms down after a few pages to a conventionally presented novel.The key intriguing element is not just who the bad guy is but how he pulled off the crimes that got the attention of the narrator/protagonist. We do get there but have to endure maybe 100 pages of twists and turns that demand the reader, to follow along, precisely remember minute details of events and conversations occurring hundreds of pages in the past.Eventually, we do get an explanation of the crimes but one I felt wholly unsatisfactory. I had no belief that the claimed method would work. We also have two serious loose ends one relating to what may be a crime long in the past and one about the final disposition of the entire book. The latter may and likely is a lead-in to a second novel in the series.I’d say that this is a poor outing by one of the most reliable novelists working today. It’ll be of more value to those who wish to read the entire canon than people seeking entertainment. For the latter, the Bosch or Lincoln Lawyer series works much better.
⭐ The crime in this book is horrific. Normally I don’t read books like this but I’ve read all of Connelly’s Bosch series so thought I’d read this one. Chapters alternate between the reporter Jack MvEvoy and a murderous pedophile named Gladden. Thankfully the Gladden chapters are short and not too explicit – just creepy enough – while the Jack chapters follow the discovery and manhunt with the FBI. There’s a bit of romance (sex) but it is underpinned by suspicion. There’s a few red herrings that send you in the wrong direction. Overall it’s a good book but I thought the treatment of the ending was weak. I’m not someone who needs a happily ever after ending tied in a neat bow but the story seemed to kind of fade away. It was disappointing. I think it was trying to highlight the ongoing struggle against the darkness but fell flat. It would make a good movie ending though. A suggestion that maybe there is more; that, sadly, the story continues.
⭐ Reading the Poet was like digging up an old treasure. The Poet was written at the beginning of the century and I stumbled on it. The long (600 pages) grips you from beginning to end. Jack McEvoy is the hero reporter (and victim) in the story. He begins by realizing his twin brother’s suicide might not be a suicide. There are many interesting characters, some good, some evil, and some who are both. Read this book! I had to laugh because reading a book in 2020 that was written in the early 2000s means you have to deal with fax machines, dial up modems, no cell phones etc. It does not diminish the story.
⭐ This is an excellent novel by Connelly and a welcome departure from his Harry Bosch character. I am a firm believer of not posting spoilers in a review and I will holdfast to this belief for the sake of future readers. However, I am simply amazed at how skillfully Connelly combines detailed characterization with a progressively forwarding plot structure. And, Connelly continues to cover all of the bases.Jack McEvoy, reporter for the Rocky Mountain News in Denver, is our main protagonist (?) in this novel. His twin brother, a member of the police force, commits suicide after a case gets the better of him. Jack works out a deal with his editor to write the story of his brother’s suicide, more for the therapy than the story itself.Jack’s family and his sister-in-law are not too pleased about all of this, but Jack feels that he must, at least, for the sake of his mind and for his dead brother’s reputation. Maybe, Jack is just going through the motions, but he makes a few inquires into the ruled suicide and with law enforcement. Questions arise and let it be said that at this point his agreement with his editor to write the story, which the editor really pushed Jack for, becomes compromised in complicated ways.At this point “The Poet” gets harder and harder to put down. Things are constantly happening and things are constantly changing. Jack doesn’t know what he is getting himself into. I revert back to the first paragraph and repeat that detailed characterization combined with a progressively forwarding plot structure really keep this book moving.Anyone that enjoys reading police procedurals, suspense, thrillers, and murder mysteries will really like Michael Connelly ’s “The Poet.” This book will appeal to a very broad reading audience. It is basically a stand-alone, so it can be read at anytime. There is a second Jack McEvoy novel, “The Scarecrow”, which is written later. I only hope that others enjoy this book as much as I did.
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