My Dark Places

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9780099549611: My Dark Places

ELLROY IS A UNIQUE VOICE IN AMERICAN FICTION' - JONATHAN KELLERMAN. On 21 June 1958, Geneva Hilliker Ellroy left her home in California. She was found strangled the next day. Her 10 year-old son James had been with her estranged husband all weekend and was informed of her death on his return. Her murderer was never found, but her death had an enduring legacy on her son - he spent his teen and early adult years as a wino, petty burglar and derelict. Only later, through his obsession with crime fiction, triggered by his mother's murder, did Ellroy begin to delve into his past. Shortly after the publication of his ground-breaking novel WHITE JAZZ, he determined to return to Los Angeles and with the help of veteran detective Bill Stoner, attempt to solve the 38-year-old killing. The result is one of the few classics of crime non-fiction and autobiography to appear in the last few decades; a hypnotic trip to America's underbelly and one man's tortured soul.

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Review:

James Ellroy's trademark is his language: it is sometimes caustically funny and always brazen. When he's hitting on all cylinders, as he is in My Dark Places, his style makes punchy rhythms out of short sentences using lingo such as "scoot" (dollar), "trim" (sex), and "brace" (to interrogate). But the premise for My Dark Places is what makes it especially compelling: Ellroy goes back to his own childhood to investigate the central mystery behind his obsession with violence against women--the death of his mother when he was 10 years old. It's hard to imagine a more psychologically treacherous, more self-exposing way in which to write about true crime. The New York Times calls it a "strenuously involving book.... Early on, Mr. Ellroy makes a promise to his dead mother that seems maudlin at first: 'I want to give you breath.' But he's done just that and--on occasion--taken ours away."

From the Publisher:

This is not an AudioBook for the squeamish. Not only is this one of the best true-crime books I've ever read (or in this case, listened to), but it's his voice that puts it over the top. I listened to My Dark Places while walking around the city one Saturday afternoon. I remember leaving home, I remember flipping over the cassette - but the rest is a blur. This story will have you in a trance until he breathes his last word....
-Carrie, Random House AudioBooks Publicity

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Ellroy, James
Published by 1997-06-05. (1997)
ISBN 10: 0099549611 ISBN 13: 9780099549611
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Book Description 1997-06-05., 1997. Book Condition: New. Arrow. New edition. Paperback. Book: GOOD. 368pp. . Bookseller Inventory # NF-1741682

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Book Description ARROW, 1997. Book Condition: Neu. Neu - An investigation into the murder of crime writer, James Ellroy's mother. She was murdered in 1958 and the case was never solved, leaving her son to embark on years of petty crime and drinking. Only later, as a writer, did he begin to delve into his past and set out to solve the mystery. Englisch. Bookseller Inventory # INF1000104195

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Book Description Arrow/Children's (a Division of Random House, 1997. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0099549611

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