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Ellroy himself was traumatized as a boy by his party-animal mother's murder. (See his memoir My Dark Places for the whole sordid story.) So it is clear that Bud is partly autobiographical. But Exley, whose shiny reputation conceals a dark secret, and Vincennes, who goes showbiz with a vengeance, reflect parts of Ellroy, too.
L.A. Confidential holds enough plots for two or three books: the cops chase stolen gangland heroin through a landscape littered with not-always-innocent corpses while succumbing to sexy sirens who have been surgically resculpted to resemble movie stars; a vile developer--based (unfairly) on Walt Disney-- schemes to make big bucks off Moochie Mouse; and the cops compete with the crooks to see who can be more corrupt and violent. Ellroy's hardboiled prose is so compressed that some of his rat-a-tat paragraphs are hard to follow. You have to read with attention as intense as hisand that is very intense indeed. But he richly rewards the effort. He may not be as deep and literary as Chandler, but he belongs on the same top-level shelf.
I decided to check out this book since I am a huge fan of the movie adaptation. I was not disappointed. NO SPOILERS. Read morePublished 14 days ago by HM
I'm a huge Ellroy fan and this is my absolute favorite of all his books. The film version is great as well.Published 26 days ago by Melinda
What a mess of a plot line, particularly the last 3rd. The movie was so much better. Give the screenwriters credit for being able to come up with something from this tangled blobPublished 2 months ago by M J Reed
This is the book I've heard so many wonderful things about? For what? The number of characters introduced in a very short period of time is truly mind numbing, the plot... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Fritz90710
This is the first I have read of Ellroy. This is one intense book -- definitely not from the languid, brooding side of noir. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Doctor Moss
Don't even think twice about watching it! You will be entertained. However, please carefully note it is definitely not for children!Published 3 months ago by SuzieQ in Florida
I like the author very much and like to read all his books, I lived in the Los Angeles area for many years and can relate to the events and locations he describes in the storyline... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Bill
I know James Ellroy is a wonderful writer, however, I just cannot get past the introduction of this book. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Karen Wiltshire