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Michael Connelly's Jack McEvoy is back, ready to save the newspaper industry from taking the fall.

Book Cover Crime story writer Michael Connelly’s latest offering brings back cop beat reporter Jack McEvoy from what I consider the finest of his 20 novels, The Poet, a standalone story that leaves aside Connelly’s long-running L.A. homicide detective Harry Bosch series—though the lethal serial killer the Poet does make another, final appearance in The Narrows, where he is terminally dispatched by Bosch.

The Scarecrow (Little, Brown) has McEvoy being dumped by his newspaper (naturally, he has a large salary) and be replaced by a novice, recent j-school grad. McEvoy decides he wants to go out in blaze of glory, and starts rooting around in what appears to be an open-and-shut murder case. This puts him and his replacement in the cyber-sights of the real killer, who happens to have deep expertise in computer security and the subtleties of hacking and who we come to find is responsible for at least two heinous sexual assault murders.

Given the Scarecrow’s computer skills, we are provided with a fair measure of background in hacking tactics and tricks and more than sufficient dramatic tension. But as much as any element of this book, Connelly, a former newspaper reporter, offers a requiem for the passing of the metropolitan daily print newspaper.
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