Best Michael Connelly Books In Order

Whether you’re a seasoned fan or just diving into his work, sorting through his extensive bibliography can be daunting. Michael Connelly is a prolific author known for his gripping crime novels featuring characters like Harry Bosch and Mickey Haller. 

In this article, we will discuss the top Michael Connelly books in chronological order, providing insight into each series and highlighting standout titles. Whether you’re seeking intense courtroom dramas or gritty detective stories, we’ll help you find your next thrilling read from one of the masters of crime fiction.

Understanding Michael Connelly Books

Michael Connelly is a prolific author known for his engaging and meticulously crafted crime novels. His books often dive deep into the inner workings of the American criminal justice system, particularly focusing on the city of Los Angeles. Here’s a quick guide to understanding Connelly’s work:

Key Series and Characters

  • Harry Bosch Series: This is perhaps Connelly’s most famous series, featuring Hieronymus “Harry” Bosch, a dedicated and relentless LAPD detective (later becoming a private investigator). Bosch’s stories are known for their complex plots and deep character development, exploring themes of justice, corruption, and redemption. The series starts with “The Black Echo” (1992).
  • Mickey Haller Series: Mickey Haller, half-brother of Harry Bosch, is a defense attorney who works out of a Lincoln Town Car, earning him the nickname the Lincoln Lawyer. These books offer a compelling look into the legal system, highlighting the ethical dilemmas and challenges faced by defense attorneys. The series begins with “The Lincoln Lawyer” (2005).
  • Renee Ballard Series: Introduced in “The Late Show” (2017), Detective Renee Ballard works the night shift (the “late show”) at the LAPD, taking on cases and solving crimes that often intersect with Bosch’s investigations. Ballard’s character adds a new dimension to Connelly’s universe, bringing fresh perspectives and challenges.
  • Jack McEvoy Series: Jack McEvoy is a crime reporter who becomes involved in the investigation of the crimes he covers, demonstrating Connelly’s deep understanding of the journalism field. The series starts with “The Poet” (1996), offering thrilling narratives that blend mystery and media.

Themes and Style

  • Realism and Research: Connelly’s background in journalism shines through in his meticulous attention to detail and commitment to realism. His books are well-researched, drawing on real police procedures, legal strategies, and forensic techniques.
  • Los Angeles: The city is more than just a setting in Connelly’s books; it’s a character in its own right. From the glamor of Hollywood to the grit of its urban streets, Los Angeles provides a rich, atmospheric backdrop to the stories.
  • Moral Complexity: Connelly’s characters often grapple with ethical dilemmas, personal demons, and the blurred lines between right and wrong. His books explore the complexities of justice and the human condition, making his characters relatable and their struggles poignant.
  • Engaging Plots: Connelly is a master of plot construction, weaving intricate narratives that keep readers guessing until the end. His ability to combine procedural detail with fast-paced action and deep character exploration makes his books particularly compelling.

Reading Order

While many of Connelly’s books can be read as standalones, readers might enjoy them more by following the publication order, especially within each series. This allows for a deeper understanding of character development and the evolution of recurring themes. However, jumping into any series at any point can still provide a thrilling and satisfying reading experience.

Whether you’re a fan of police procedurals, legal thrillers, or investigative journalism, Michael Connelly’s books offer something for every crime fiction enthusiast, all while painting a vivid portrait of the pursuit of justice in contemporary America.

Complete Michael Connelly Books In Order

  • The Black Echo (1992)
  • The Black Ice (1993)
  • The Concrete Blonde (1994)       
  • The Last Coyote (1995)
  • The Poet (1996)
  • Trunk Music (1997)
  • Blood Work (1998)
  • Angels Flight (1999) 
  • Void Moon (2000)
  • A Darkness More Than Night (2001)
  • City Of Bones (2002)
  • Chasing the Dime (2002)
  • Lost Light (2003)
  • The Narrows (2004)
  • The Closers (2005)
  • The Lincoln Lawyer (2005)
  • Echo Park (2006)
  • The Overlook  (2007)
  • The Brass Verdict (2008)
  • Nine Dragons (2009)
  • The Scarecrow (2009)
  • The Reversal (2010)
  • The Drop (2011)
  • The Fifth Witness (2011)
  • The Black Box (2012)
  • The Gods of Guilt (2013)
  • The Burning Room (2014)
  • The Crossing (2015)
  • The Wrong Side Of Goodbye (2016)
  • The Late Show (2017 Renée Ballard #1)
  •  Two Kinds Of Truth (2017)
  • Dark Sacred Night (2018)
  • The Night Fire (2019)
  • The Law of Innocence (2020)
  • Fair Warning (2020)
  • The Dark Hours (2021)
  • Desert Star (2022)
  • Resurrection Walk (2023)


What are some of the best Michael Connelly books?

Some of the top Michael Connelly books include “The Lincoln Lawyer,” “The Black Echo,” “The Poet,” and “The Drop.”

Which Michael Connelly book should I start with?

For newcomers, “The Black Echo” featuring detective Harry Bosch is a great starting point, offering gripping suspense and character depth.

Are Michael Connelly’s books standalone or part of a series?

Connelly’s books often feature recurring characters like Harry Bosch and Mickey Haller, but most can be enjoyed as standalone novels.

What makes Michael Connelly’s books popular?

Connelly’s skillful storytelling, compelling characters, and intricate plots make his books captivating reads for mystery and thriller fans alike.


Michael Connelly’s books take readers on a gripping journey through the twists and turns of crime and justice, showcasing his talent for creating complex characters and intricate plots. His storytelling captures the essence of the crime genre, making each book a must-read for fans.

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