Heard: Gods of Guilt by Michael Connelly, 2013, Overdrive download.
This makes a jump in time from Fifth Witness where Haller ran for District Attorney and was defeated when one of his clients was freed from custody and killed two people in a drunken wreck. I was thinking I must have missed a novel in the series but just looked at the bib on Connelly's website and I've read all the Haller novels. That election defeat also estranged Haller from his teenage daughter who was questioned by her classmates about her scumbag father. Even worse, the car collision victims were parents from Haller's daughter's school.
Anyway. Haller still works with the same group of people. Lorna the secretary, Cisco the investigator, Bullocks the firm's attorney, Earl the driver. Haller's practice has been up and down over the years and the foreclosure cases that were keeping him solvent have not been as steady. Lorna receives a jail phone call straight from a suspected murderer who says he can pay. Pay? That's the magic word.
Haller meets the guy. He is an internet pimp. He creates the websites, does the bookings, and takes a cut. The pimp's prostitute/client was murdered and the pimp was seen at her place, questioned by the cops, and arrested. Haller takes the case. Haller finds out the dead woman is the same prostitute the he used to regularly defend until he gifted her the money to travel to Hawaii and start over in legal work. IN the years since Haller would receive Hawaiian postcards from Prostitute but never noticed the Riverside, CA postage stamps.
Anyway. Haller sees a connection between the dead woman and the case that Haller negotiated for her to turn evidence on a drug dealer and get out of a charge. Haller learns Prostitute was under the heavy thumb of a DEA agent who made her plant a gun in the drug dealer's room. Imprisoned Drug Dealer learned about this and has been subpoenaing people involved.
Haller digs. Haller is threatened. Haller lies. Haller is indignant when accused of lying. Haller bullies. Haller is an asshole. Haller admits to being an asshole. Haller says he is an asshole when his clients are on the line. Baloney, Haller is an asshole and liar no matter what. Haller has issues.
Legal scheming and maneuvering. DEA bad guy. Pimp is actually innocent. Series character is murdered. Everyone gets their just desserts and Haller is victorious in court.
1. An enjoyable series.
2. This felt more straightforward than previous Haller novels that would have twists in the end. I was expecting the pimp to be guilty after all, but he wasn't.