Bestselling author Michael Connelly specializes in detective novels, but with The Lincoln Lawyer series, he dips his toes into the world of legal thrillers. In The Lincoln Lawyer books, Connelly introduces us to the enigmatic and cynical criminal defense attorney Michael Haller (but you can call him Mickey). He’s been nicknamed the Lincoln Lawyer due to his penchant for dealing out of the back of his Lincoln town car. These books exist in the same world as Connelly’s popular Harry Bosch series. Not only so, but Bosch happens to be Mickey’s half-brother and makes appearances in the Mickey Haller books (and vice versa).
The Lincoln Lawyer Books in Order
This series first landed on my radar when I saw the film adaptation of the first book. The Lincoln Lawyer cast includes Hollywood heavyweights such as Matthew McConaughey as Mickey and Ryan Phillippe as Louis Roulet. Looking for where to go after The Lincoln Lawyer? Don’t worry, I got you. Check out Michael Connelly’s Lincoln Lawyer books in order.
Mickey Haller is a cynical defense attorney defending mostly the scum of Los Angeles. He works out the back of his car, driving from courthouse to courthouse. Haller isn’t too concerned about guilt or innocence; he believes the law to be more about negotiation and manipulation. When Louise Roulet, a rich womanizer and real estate agent from Beverly Hills, is charged with viciously assaulting a woman, he enlists Haller’s help. At first, Haller is excited to have a high paying client. But when he and his investigator start digging, things turn violent and Haller begins to question his approach.
The Brass Verdict is the second book in the Mickey Haller Lincoln Lawyer series. At the beginning of The Brass Verdict, Mickey Haller has inherited his late fellow defense attorney Jerry Vincent’s practice. Haller’s main concern is a high profile case involving a Hollywood producer who allegedly murdered his wife and the person she was supposedly having an affair with. He tries to pull a defense together for Walter Eliot, the producer. As he scrambles, LAPD detective Harry Bosch gets in the way. With his moral compass a little straighter, Haller reluctantly works with Bosch when he realizes there’s more to the murder case than he thought.
In The Reversal, Mickey Haller changes sides, so to speak. For this high profile case, Haller is going to be prosecuting the criminal rather than defending him. After over two decades in jail, a convicted child murder—Jason Jessup—is being set free. New DNA evidence has been tested, and it exonerated him. However, Haller is not so sure of Jessup's innocence. In fact, quite the opposite—he’s convinced Jessup is guilty and will kill again. Because of this, he agrees to prosecute the case. But only if he gets to choose his LAPD investigator. He teams up with Harry Bosch and they dig into the case for retrial. The odds are not exactly in their favor, but Haller and Bosch brave the dangers in order to put this killer behind bars.
Due to problems in the economy, Mickey Haller is having a rough go. He’s had to expand his legal purview to foreclosure law to make ends meet. His first foreclosure client is Lisa Trammel. Mickey manages to keep her roof over her head, but there’s been pushback from the bank. Soon, a high-level bank employee is found dead and Lisa is the main suspect. Now Haller’s back to do what he does best—criminal defense. But this case isn’t going to be as easy as he thinks. In fact, it’s going to change everything.
Haller is texted by someone that needs his help. He doesn’t know the details, but he knows it involves a 187—the code for murder. Soon he finds out that the victim is a previous client of his. She was a sex worker, and he thought he had helped her. But it seems like she is back doing sex work, and it was likely Haller who put her in harm’s way. As he dives into the case, the past starts catching up with him. Is he to blame for what happened to her? Only time will tell.
Defense attorney Mickey Haller is pulled over by police, who find the body of a client in the trunk of his Lincoln. Haller is charged with murder and can’t make the exorbitant $5 million bail slapped on him by a vindictive judge.
Mickey elects to defend himself and must strategize and build his defense from his jail cell in the Twin Towers Correctional Center in downtown Los Angeles, all the while looking over his shoulder–as an officer of the court he is an instant target.
Mickey knows he’s been framed. Now, with the help of his trusted team, he has to figure out who has plotted to destroy his life and why. Then he has to go before a judge and jury and prove his innocence.
In his highest-stakes case yet, Mickey Haller fights for his life and shows why he is “a worthy colleague of Atticus Finch…in the front of the pack in the legal thriller game” (Los Angeles Times).
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Beth O’Brien is a library assistant and book blogger. Born and raised in Atlantic Canada, she lives in picturesque Nova Scotia with her cat Edith. You can often find her rocking double denim with her nose in a book and a craft beer in her hand. Follow her on Twitter @fuelldbyfiction