Synopses & Reviews
Dig. The Demon Dog gets down with a new book of scenes from America's capital of kink: Los Angeles. Fourteen pieces, some fiction, some nonfiction, all true enough to be admissible as state's evidence, and half of it in print for the first time. And every one of them bearing the James Ellroy brand of mayhem, machismo, and hollow-nose prose.
Here are Mexican featherweights and unsolved-murder vics, crooked cops and a very clean D.A. Here is a profile of Hollywood's latest celebrity perp-walker, Robert Blake, and three new novellas featuring a demented detective with an obsession with a Hollywood actress. And, oh yes, just maybe the last appearance of Hush-Hush sleaze-monger Danny Getchell. Here's Ellroy himself, shining a 500-watt Mag light into all the dark places of his life and imagination. Destination: Morgue! puts the reader's attention in a hammerlock and refuses to let go.
"The Demon Dog is back with a second volume of previously uncollected works (following 1999's Crime Wave), most published during his stint as a writer-at-large for GQ. The essays 'Where I Get My Weird Shit' and 'My Life as a Creep' chronicle his childhood: the 1958 murder of his mother; a West Hollywood upbringing by his sex-obsessed father; a '60s and '70s coming-of-age replete with Benzedrex binges, 'Nazi antics' and superheroic feats of breaking and entering. Young Ellroy obsesses over the femme fatales of pulp and porn, whose images he projects onto murder victims and probation officers alike. In 'Stephanie,' a grown-up Ellroy tags along with the LAPD when a 40-year-old homicide case involving a girl from his old neighborhood is reopened. Ellroy's greatest hits go on Mexican boxers, dirty cops, D-list celebrity murders and devotees will especially welcome the return of lecherous muckraker Danny Getchell. The newest additions, three novellas spanning 200 pages, are told from the perspective of rhino-skin-sporting LAPD dick Rick Jenson, who's got a sore spot for a tough 'n' tumble Hollywood actress. Ellroy's punchy, lingo-laden prose and caustic edge are as sharp as ever, but readers unaccustomed to his penchant for alliteration may not be able to stomach the newer stuff, where sentences like 'Crime crystallized crisp in my cranial cracks,' interspersed with Dragnet-like reportage, are the order of the day. Agent, Nat Sobel. (Sept. 14)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Dig him, hepcats: James Ellroy, demon dog, narrator of nocturnes, alliterative all-star of the caper canon....Die-hard fans will dig this day-trippers will think it's a dud." Booklist
"Although not a detective novel per se, Destination: Morgue! serves up more mystery and crime in 400 pages than any other three books I can think of offhand." BookPage
"Ellroy rips into American culture like a chainsaw in an abattoir." Time
"One of the great American writers of our time." Los Angeles Times
"Nobody in this generation matches the breadth and depth of James Ellroy's way with noir." Detroit News
"Ellroy is either our greatest obsessive writer or our most obsessive great writer. Either way, he is turning the crime novel's mean streets into superhighways." Financial Times
The bestselling author of My Dark Places and L.A. Confidential returns with a new collection of flash-lit scenes from America's capital of kink Los Angeles.
About the Author
James Ellroy was born in Los Angeles in 1948. His L.A. Quartet novels The Black Dahlia, The Big Nowhere, L.A. Confidential, and White Jazz were international bestsellers. American Tabloid was Time's Novel of the Year; his memoir My Dark Places was a Time Best Book of the Year and a New York Times Notable Book; and his most recent novel, The Cold Six Thousand, was a New York Times Notable Book and a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year. He lives in Kansas City.