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Secret Stairs: A Walking Guide to the Historic Staircases of Los Angeles Paperback – April 1, 2010

4.7 out of 5 stars 88 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Charles Fleming is the author of the national bestseller High Concept: Don Simpson and the Hollywood Culture of Excess, and co-author of the New York Times bestsellers Three Weeks in October: The Manhunt for the Serial Sniper, A Goomba's Guide to Life, and My Lobotomy. A former staff writer for Newsweek, Variety, and the Los Angeles Herald-Examiner, and a frequent contributor to Vanity Fair, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles magazine, and LA Weekly, Fleming teaches journalism at USC. He lives with his wife and two daughters in Silver Lake, California.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Santa Monica Press (April 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595800506
  • ISBN-13: 978-1595800503
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (88 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,901 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By P. W. Brock on April 14, 2010
Format: Paperback
What a nice book. I live in the Echo Park district of Los Angeles, and a friend suggested this book to me. I realized I had read a novel by the author a few years ago that I really enjoyed, "The Ivory Coast" a jazz/noir set in Vegas, so I picked up a copy. Now I'm planning to take the walks written about in the book. Wow. As a kid, one of my favorite "Three Stooges" was shot on a stair street. They had a job delivering ice, and Curly has a huge block of ice in tongs, and when he gets to the top, he's holding a little ice cube. What I love about L. A. is how much history and mystery exists here, particularly on the east side, and parts of Hollywood. Because it was run down over here for so long, large swaths of the east side weren't touched when all of the money moved in a little west, and few of those monstrous developments occurred; there are still little nuggets and gems you can find. My only quibble is that I would have loved pictures of the stair street, but on the other hand, the descriptions are great, and leaving the mystery makes me want to go there myself. Which I plan to.
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Format: Paperback
In a time when most of us are worried, or at least aware, of our physical health and gyms and various work-out methods (Pilates, Spinning, Bootcamp, etc) are sprouting everywhere, Charles Fleming brings us Secret Stairs. I have had the pleasure of taking several of these walks and I am here to say that is quite the Cardio work-out. However it is not just that, these walks are filled with secret paths, discovering new neighborhoods, stunning views and once you to read this book or take one of the walks with Mr. Fleming himself (treat!) you will then have tidbits of old (and new) Hollywood secrets. So order your book and get started today!
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Format: Paperback
Great book, even for non-walkers like myself. I've lived in Los Angeles nearly my entire life, and I didn't know about any of the places so delightfully described in Charles Fleming's book. It's like discovering a secret wilderness in the midst of city I thought I knew so well. This is a must-read for anyone who lives here or plans to visit.
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Format: Paperback
We are always looking for unique and fun things to do with our children or just on our own and this book offers both. We get to mix some fun history, good ol' exercise and family time as we seek out the next great secret stairs. Nice job Mr. Fleming.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I used to live on Walk #1 and enjoyed seeing many people travel up and down the stairs with this handy guide in their hands. Many smiling faces and happy families. I tried three walks and the instructions were easy to follow and accurate. If you have an interest in seeing some hidden parts of Los Angeles, I would highly recommend this book.
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Format: Paperback
What a wonderful book! Not only has it kick started my Springtime outdoor exercise routine, but in the three walks I've done so far, it's already taken me to parts of my very own neighborhood that I've never seen before. Many of the staircases featured in the book are historical landmarks, and feature some truly beautiful construction. But it's not just the stairs that make these described urban hikes enjoyable, it's also the writer's knack for pointing out the architectural and environmental curiosities on each walk. Strolling the quiet residential streets, I've found myself chatting and sharing portions of the hike with friendly neighborhood residents, a wayward group of German tourists, and some garrulous joggers. Walking for leisure, it seems, really makes LA seem like a community in a way it never will if only viewed rushing past your windshield. I can't wait to do the rest of the hikes in the book!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
just barely used this for the first time this past weekend out in santa monica coast line. the book is laid out very nicely with detailed directions/maps, incredible hollywood lore, and awesome details/descriptions of landmarks/etc.

this is the first book of its kind that ive purchased and used. i will definitely go through this one and then look for some other hiking books from this author once im done.
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I have a big black lab and a busy sheduale so it is great to have someone plan out my walks for me. I no longer say ug OK lets go for a walk its more like where should we go walk today there are so many choices. I have done my own version of the secret stairs walk around the Echo Park and Silver lake area for years now but this book tops them off nicely with historical side notes and a reliable distance that get my big black lab nice and tired. I love this book!
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