The Time of the Hunters Moon lI would think that since James Ellroy is one of my favoriteiving novelists that I d check every now and then to see if a new book is in the works Nope I think I treat all my favorites as Pynchon s new books may come out at some point but they will be rare Vegas Vacation (Destination: Desire, like unicorns so it s not worth poking around to see if you can find one and this would be a sad way to find unicorns because you re guaranteed to probably never find on if you neverook But my ack of awareness paid off nicely when after months of putting off ooking through any of the Book Expo of America BEA materials I finally succumbed on the night before it started and saw James Ellory is signing at 3pm at Random House One might think that at this point I d fire up the magic machine that gives information about all kinds of things and ook up James Ellory and New Book or maybe even go to the ittle search function at the top of this page and type in James Ellroy and see what his new book was Nope Didn t do that either which wouldn t have been difficult since I was on this magical information giving machine at the timeInstead I typed Random House Friday 2pm David Mitchell 3pm James Ellroy and added to a magical program on the machine that would allow me to see what I typed on the first magical machine on an eually magical pocket sized version of the machine What wondrous times we Stepdog live in Myack of initiative to find out what exactly I was going to be getting signed by James Ellroy didn t stop me from bothering Karen with uestions about what the book could be Do you think it s a Another Way Home long book Do you think it is one of those very niceooking re issues with a Chip Kidd cover but which are ultimately kind of unsatisfying Do you think it s a continuation of the American Trilogy Of course Karen didn t know and maybe some of these uestions I kept to myself but I did wonder about them and again I did nothing to satisfy my curiosity This all ead to a nice surprise First that I d get to have anything signed by James Ellory who I hadn t even thought might be at BEA and second because it was a major novel I didn t realize this though until a few seconds before he signed a copy of the book and handed it to me though Even when I finally broke down and ooked up to see what I d be standing in ine to get I still only gave a cursory glance at the description and felt a ittle disappointed Japanese Americans World War 2 Los Angeles I wanted some American History to keep on rolling from where his Bill Veeck's Crosstown Classic (Chicago Shorts) last noveleft off Give the dirt and collusion on Reagan s America slander the Clintons You don t always get what you want Still reading After a fairly unsatisfying moment of getting to meet James Ellroy I Antarctica leafed through the new tome in my hands and thought wow this is going to be awesome I saw the book ended with aist of characters and where else they appear in the seven novels that make up the LA and Underworld series of novels Saw that this was the first of a uartet that would be part of the same world but come before the start of The Black Dahlia Saw Beyond the Laboratory: Scientists as Political Activists in 1930s America lots of familiar names Hello old morally dubious friendsAnd of course this was the first thing I read as soon as I got home from BEA ok this is aie I finished the new Hardcase Lawrence Block that I got about two hours before Perfidia but I had started it while waiting on the Random House ines so while technically a BEA book it shouldn t count There were so many books that I d picked up in the few days there that I was excited to read but none of them had any chance of being read before this 700 page novel which Ellroy says is his ongest page count novel I feel Cartesian Questions: Method and Metaphysics like hisast couple were onger but it might have just been the scope and writing style that packed so much into the pages than this one didPreambling enough I should talk about the book The title comes from a song specifically the Glenn Miller version of it You can isten to it while reading the rest of this review or just imagine that you re part of Dudley Smith s opium induced imagination starts on December 6th 1941 A Saturday morning with a stake out of a pharmacy that had been held up multiple times in the past month LAPD s only Japanese cop has created a device to take pictures automatically of every icense plate that parks in front of the pharmacy He and Ray Pinker sit and watch to see if the device works and it isn t ong before the store is held up This is how Ellroy decided to start his saga that would result in all the bad shit that goes down through the seven other books A simple armed robbery Later in the day a Japanese family is found dead in their house Mom dad their panty sniffing pervy son and young daughter Seppuku A note about the coming apocalypse December 6th The next morning obviously is Pearl Harbor The story is told from four perspectives with each chapter switching from one to the other this Pearl Harbor The story told from four perspectives with each chapter switching from one to the other this get a ittle confusing it spots because after the first go around you aren t told whose perspective you are seeing you just have to remember that it goes Hideo Ashida Kay Lake William Parker Dudley Smith This isn t usually difficult but there are a couple of spots when the characters start colluding where it took me a bit to figure out where we wereAshida is the only Japanese cop on the LAPD mentioned above kay ake is a young dilettante with Kay Lake is a young dilettante with morals William Parker is a real The Rise and Fall of the New Deal Order, 1930-1980 life LAPD cop and would be the chief of police in the 1950 s and 60 s And finally Dudley Smith the menacing villain through much of the original LA uartetThis novel follows theast weeks of 1941 as World War 2 is beginning for the United States Japanese Americans in Los Angeles are being rounded up and internment camps are Confession looming as the new must be places toive of February 1942 As civil rights are being trampled the case of the Japanese family is turned into a public relations tool Corruption is everywhere and all four of the main characters are colluding for various advantages of ife during wartime It s fairly standard Ellroy stuff A few really tough guys holding each other by the balls while pointing a throw down piece at the other one s head and some people who have to collude with these tough guys if they are going to survive But it s in these conspiracies within conspiracies that Ellroy excels and the scale might be smaller than in American Tabloid where a president ultimately gets killed by these schemes but they are still just as engaging to read The stand out in this novel was Dudley Smith It s been years since I read the LA uartet so some of my memories are hazy but what I remember in those was Dudley Smith as a ooming menace An untouchable corrupt and brutal cop who et nothing get in his way Here we see the rise of Dudley Smith he s already the exemplar of the brutal Irish cop but there is also the humane side of him exposed He comes across ike Pete Bondurant would become as his story unfolded in The Cold Six Thousand I m probably going to remember this book as the Ballad of Dudley Smithspoiler for those who have read Black Dahliaview spoilerWas he the father of Elizabeth Short in the original novel I don t remember him being so I Curators of the Buddha ll have to go back and read that one when I get the time hide spoiler Where do I even begin to start Most all of us have heard of James Ellroy but I must admit that I was only familiar with his work by reputation and from the movie LA Confidential I have purchased his books but never read one until I decided to start this It grabs you from the beginning and I am amazed at the intricate plot and wonder how he can keep everything in order It is hard enough for the reader to keep up with allet alone the author I enjoyed the book although I felt it easily could have been 100 150 pages shorter since some plot Another Way Home: The Tangled Roots of Race in One Chicago Family lines are throw away than necessary or if necessary are just too darnong winded But we get to see in this book the beginning of many of the characters and corruption that he carries over into his Cezanne a Study of His Development later works Everyone has an angle everyone is trying to make a buck on the upcoming Japanese internment and the murder investigation is almost a side story to what Ellroy portrays as the corrupt LAPD Ready to tackle of his works I guess when the notion of shared ownership was developed for the movies so that the various Marvel superheroes movies and forthcoming Star Wars films all share characters and plots James Ellroy was one of theucky recipients of the original memo As here we have the first of a new series of crime novels which You Owe Me One link directly into his LA uartet and The Underworld USA Trilogy and I will personally be disappointed if there aren t references to his muchess well regarded Lloyd Hopkins trilogy This is a preuel so younger versions of characters from both those series appear here And as a preuel it comes with the normal preuel problems if we ve read the original uartet a certain amount of jeopardy and danger is removed as we know which of these characters have to survive further why don t the characters in the ater set but earlier written novels mention anything about the events of this book That s the problem of writing a preuel in a shared universe so much is already set in concreteBut incredibly we have than just the usual as Ellroy has given himself an elephant of a continuity problem by early on making clear that Elizabeth Short notable victim in the original LA uartet is the daughter of Dudley Smith the symbol of all roguish policemen in the. 7 dicembre 1941 Il Giappone ha bombardato Pearl Harbor Gli Stati Uniti sono a un passo dalla guerra e a Los Angeles scatta un'ondata di arresti I cittadini nipponici sospettabili di alto tradimento finiscono dietro e sbarre La bandiera dell'odio razziale sventola alta perciò nessuno dovrebbe preoccuparsi uando i uattro membri di una famiglia giapponese vengono trovati morti dentro casa tanto più
Free download PerfidiaSame books Surely there s no indication of that anywhere in the original uartet and it s such a jarring ink that one can only wonder why Ellroy thought it was a good idea It s Confederate Cities: The Urban South during the Civil War Era like the joke in theast Austin Powers film that Austin and Dr Evil are brothers but that joke done for real by Ian Fleming for James Bond and Blofeld in some Convents and the Body Politic in Late Renaissance Venice lost novel after You Only Live Twice Maybe it s a decision that will work betterater on in this new uartet but right now it feels Edicts of Asoka like an author having a character heikes and just shoe horning her in any way he canIt s December 1941 on the eve of and right after Pearl Harbour Two LA cops Dudley Smith and William Parker as well as police chemist Hideo Ashida find themselves investigating the brutal murder of a Japanese family and this being Ellroy dealing with the kind of personal demons which would fill an entire sub strata of hellThe fact that this is the second LA uartet suggests immediately that it s closely related to The Black Dahlia LA Confidential The Big Nowhere and White Jazz than the other books That s positive as it makes for a experience Upgrade Soul less hysterical and focused than thoseater novels It s not as good a novel though as those in the original LA uartet as it s still a bit hysterical and can probably be focused but it s aiming for the same targets and hits a ot of the time If you ike those books you Elizabeth I: Translations, 1544-1589 ll buy into thisJust a note though on theanguage Ellroy will argue that the reason there is so much racism and uestionable social attitudes in his work is that this is how his characters would have spoken what they would have believed I can accept that But then he s clearly having so much fun with the racism and with the various anti homosexualanti womenanti anyone who isn t a red blooded white American male barbs insults and slurs that it mitigates his argument somewhat Can he really say that he s just representing his character s belief system when he s clearly in Dolphin Confidential: Confessions of a Field Biologist love with the rhythm and pace he gets from using racial epithets in every other sentence I can see why some people wouldn t get too far into this book or into most other works by Ellroy for that matter and I also know why peopleike me who are well disposed to this type of fiction and to this author in particular can enjoy it whilst still being made to feel a tad uncomfortable Vacuuming I oathe vacuuming It is outranked in its futility and annoyance only by aundry Thus I read and read while my house becomes dirtier and dirtier Until Perfidia That fateful afternoon when I put down Perfidia unable to force myself to read any onger and did the unthinkableI start with the staircase which is the easiest and most gratifying part of the house to vacuum given its hardwood floors and ack of obstacles Begone powdery dirt and mud clumps I reach the top of the stairs and have a clear Imaginary Runner line of vision to both the couch in theiving room and the closet where I could now stow the vacuumI From Cottage to Bungalow: Houses and the Working Class in Metropolitan Chicago, 1869-1929 look from Perfidia perched on the couch to the vacuum in my hands Perfidia Vacuum DecisionI continue to vacuum the main floor starting with the brown area rug that sheds wool as though it is a creature in heat On my hands and knees I vacuum underneath the bookshelves sucking up the fist sized tumbleweeds composed of the fur of two cats and twoong haired dogs I navigate the twenty four chair Fresh Water legs under the dining table I scour the dreaded zone around theitter box for those pesky piss saturated particles that roll for miles I sweep the pizza crust crumbs off the kitchen counter have I really eaten that much pizza and into the vacuum s ravenous path I am slippery with sweat and have reached a natural stopping point as everything on this floor has been clearedI French Daguerreotypes look from Perfidia to the vacuum Perfidia Vacuum DecisionI drag the vacuum to the base of the next staircase the dreaded carpeted staircase Each of its sixteen stairs reuires multiple passes each time using a different attachment No bristles Bristles For the edges For the flat surfaces I eventually reach the top My back aches I could wrap up the vacuum s cord and call it uits Perfidia Vacuum DecisionI vacuum the top floor of the house The bathroom tiles which have been delicatelyaced with hair hair so From Notes to Narrative: Writing Ethnographies That Everyone Can Read long it could only be mine Under the nightstands Behind the headboard In the dark recesses of the closet Around the piles of books on the office floor I am exhausted My house has not been cleaner in weeks perhaps months The carpetooks two shades From the Enemy's Point of View: Humanity and Divinity in an Amazonian Society lighter Perfidia Vacuum DecisionI empty the vacuum s bag for the third time I have nearly filled a trash bag with the detritus I descend the two flights of stairs to the trash can in the garage I return to my new friend and gentlyay it on its side before attacking the ong fibers stuck in the bristles with scissors Later I
set the vacuum upright and slowly wind the electrical cord around and around and aroundMy thoughts return to Perfidia Obscenelythe vacuum upright and slowly wind the electrical cord around and around and aroundMy thoughts return to Perfidia Obscenely slowly wind the electrical cord around and around and aroundMy thoughts return to Perfidia Obscenely huge its 691 pages Confusing with its arge cast of characters and Twelve Days of Pleasure lack of explanation Staccato in its writing Crude and blunt Baffling popularityScrew Perfidia I start aoad of aundry When it comes to crime fiction I cut my teeth hell I fractured my fucking jaw on James Ellroy s LA uartet And as far as I am concerned many imitate the man s style but this particular king is in no danger of being dethroned in this ifetime Every handful of years or so when a new backbreaker by Ellroy struts onto the bookstore shelf I m one of the first suckers clawing my way through the pages I Gustave Caillebotte: The Painter's Eye ll go on the record and say that since Ellroy wrote The Black Dahlia and began hisong task of rewriting the Grand Illusion: The Third Reich, the Paris Exposition, and the Cultural Seduction of France last half of 20th century American history as a sleazy pulp novel he has redefined what a crime novel is capable of Ellroy s LA is a world where cops are criminals politicians are criminals where everyone is a criminal and occasionally some of these criminals aren t as terrible of monsters as the rest Neither optimism nor nostalgia are notions Ellroy tries to sell his readersSadly Perfidia which is supposed toaunch a preuel uartet of novels that will tie together all the strings of his LA uartet and his Underworld USA trilogy into one cohesive work crumbles under its own ambition and Ellroy s Ellroy ness as a writer is completely to blame I don t really have the heart to take the scalpel to this book and besides fellow Ellroy devotee Kemper did a wonderful job at pointing out all the cracks in the Ellroy fa ade in his own review and in a much thoughtful and creative way than I can imagine His beefs are my beefs with the writing the plotting and the historical context I will briefly add that several of the characters who serve as this novel s protagonists have played arge roles in previous chronologically ater installments and much of the information that is revealed about them as well as their actions during these wild days after the bombing of Pearl Harbor don t match up with what has already been written which goes against Ellroy s whole mission statement of making this series of tentatively eleven books gel together as one Great Plains: America's Lingering Wild long asife uber novel Also knowing the fate of every character in the book removes a Hard Bread (Phoenix Poets lot of the tension of wondering who the hell is going to manage to walk away from this book alive For those not in the know Ellroy is mostikely the originator of the Electromyography for Experimentalists literary trope of having one character empty an entire clip of a gun point blank into the head of another characterBut why three stars Because it is still an Ellroy It s a big bold incredibly violent wild densely plotted rude nightmarish sexy morally reprehensible novel written in a completely idiosyncratic bee bop staccato of simple sentences New readers may find aot to Forgetful of Their Sex: Female Sanctity and Society, ca. 500-1100 love in this book Me I m just hoping he works out some of these kinks by next book I have so few auto buy authors these days I used to have many but one by one I drop them when the stories turn predictable and the writing stale One actually died but anywayEllroy is heavy reading and his dirty staccato style is what makes the scenery come alive If you ve glommed the rest of his catalog you know several players here Perfidia is a preuel of sorts to his other series It begins just before the attack on Pearl Harbor with the murder of a Japanese family in LA Throughout the investigation the story peels awayayers to reveal corruption within the police force sympathies for opposing forces and a ot of bad anguage Ellroy doesn t write rainbows and unicornsThe only problem I have with Ellroy s books is I have to go back and read the others again to jar my memory One day I l sit and have a good bingeAs much as I ove books I don t explode into rainbows often when I hear of a pending release but but but new James Ellroy Hello Mr Ellroy Mr Kemper I hear that you are somewhat familiar with me I am Please tell me what you know Be succinct You are haunted by the unsolved murder of your mother which occurred when you were a child and Wicked Loving Lies led you to become obsessed with crime and women You freuently dreamed of scenarios in which you could save damsels in distress Youet your rich fantasy La heredera del mar life rule you and with no ambition or discipline you became a homeless drunk and drug addict in your teens You eventually hit bottom and got sober You became a writer and used your fascination with true crime and post war Los Angeles to create what you called the LA uartet You started with a fictionalized version of the He potrebbe trattarsi di un suicidio rituale Le indagini però partono ugualmente proprio perché ci si prepara a distruggere e depredare una delle comunità straniere più ricche e integrate della California è necessario mostrarsi irreprensibili Ellroy racconta conucida ferocia ventitre giorni tra i più drammatici della storia americana chiamando in scena una folla di personaggi che i suoi etto. Lack Dahlia case and one of the books LA Confidential became an acclaimed movie You wrote a trilogy called Underworld USA that followed bad men doing bad things in the shadows of recent American history You investigated the death of your mother with an ex cop and published the results as a memoir You wrote a second autobiography in which you admitted that much of what you wrote about your state of mind in the first book wasn t true You recently published a new novel called Perfidia that you state is the start of a new Second LA uartet What are your impressions of Perfidia Please be brief Perfidia begins the day before Pearl Harbor is attacked by the Japanese Many of the characters are ones you used in other books ike Dudley Smith a corrupt police officer who was a arge part of the LA uartet and Kay Lake from The Black Dahlia Others are based on real ife people ike William Whiskey Bill Parker another LAPD officer who would go on to become the chief of police A new addition is a brilliant police crime scene technician Hideo Ashida of Japanese descent The murder of a Japanese family coincides with the news of the attack and the investigation takes place as LA is consumed by a mixture of patriotism and paranoia Corruption enters the scene immediately with many people scheming on ways to profit from the war even as the ships are still burning at Pearl Harbor That s a summary I asked for your impressions There is a ot here to appeal to your fans The wartime setting with a mystery that blends fiction with history against a LA that is completely corrupt is something that you know how to utilize to provide a gritty noir atmosphere Your plotting with the characters aligning and betraying each other almost at whim is as dense and intricate as ever Your style of short sentences in a stream of consciousness patter as the perspective shifts from character to character is still sharp and you retain the knack of writing scenes of brutal violence that seem to pass in moments yet eave Xenophon And His World (Historia Einzelschriften) lasting effects That s the positive side Please tell me where you think the book wasacking While some Geography of the Gaze: Urban and Rural Vision in Early Modern Europe longtime fans will be delighted at the way you ve incorporated so many characters from your other books it also brings some of the problems inherent to preuels into the mix Explain If you know that a character is alive and has a career with the police department in a book set after Perfidia then I know that they will not die orose their job in this book despite anything that may occur This naturally removes some of the drama Naturally Please continue If not done well the characters may act in ways or accumulate knowledge that seems at odds with the other incarnation For exampleview spoiler the idea that Dudley Smith is the father of Elizabeth Short the Black Dahlia is something that is pretty shocking and wasn t even hinted at that I can recall in his previous appearances hide spoiler awesome just awesome one of the best portraits of obsession in all of fictionone of those books that just tractor beams the reader grinds her up and shits her out blast me forth from your rectum mr ellroy gobble me whole and crap me out do it do it do it it s awe inspiring what ellroy does here grabs tons of characters from his First LA uartet perfidia is book one of the Second LA uartet and Underworld USA Trilogy and throws em into his most densely plotted and highly charged environment yet doesn t get better so why not 5 stars well ellroy s plotting is so dense brutal and bombastic that one simply feels pummeled it s exhilerating but a kind of diminishing returns syndrome sets in whereby the reader simply cannot maintain the Groove: An Aesthetic of Measured Time level of excitement and focus that ellroy demands it s a conunudrum the benzedrine and blood fueled mania creates an effect that a few nice n easy moments would distrupt however the reader just cannot maintain for 700 pgs of this stuff wo some nice n easyTHANK YOU KAREN BRISSETTE Black Dahlia The Big Nowhere LA Confidential White Jazz American Tabloid The Cold Six Thousand Blood s A Rover Big bold and uncompromising if you haven t read Ellroy before this probably isn t a good place to start His house style uniue eclectic perhaps even eccentric full of police and other slang which he never deigns to explain is on full display here and we just have to plunge ourselves into his corrupt and tainted world and find our way as best we can Ellroy is an uncompromising writer we either accept his world on his terms or we get out All the same there are places where the clippedaconic tone starts to feel a bit One Wild Weekend like a parody of itself something I didn t feel in the earlier booksSet in 1941 around the time of Pearl Harbour a Japanese family is found dead and with a Japanese investigator on the case while his compatriots are being interned the racial politics of the book are fraught Characters from the earlier booksater in terms of chronology abound and some of the opaue elements of The Black Dahlia and LA Confidential are explained the troubling sexless relationship between Kay Lake and Lee Blanchard while we get a shocking revelation about Elizabeth Short the Dahlia and spend uite a Forgetful of Their Sex lot of time within the mind of Dudley Smith as well as hearing some of the events that have made him who he is I was uite unsure about theatter with its rather pat bad childhood psychopathic adult easy connectionDon t come to this expecting a inear defined story Ellory s characters are defined
by slippery dialogue and contested actions rather than by what aslippery dialogue and contested actions rather than by what a narrative expository voice might say about them and it helps if you ve met them before in the earlier books set in the 1950s So this is the kind of book that I sometimes felt ost in but even when I had no idea what was happening it remains unputdownable A dense stubborn book which refuses to accommodate itself to a reader s convenience Ellroy does my head in but in a good way Before I get into it all allow me to make a few statements for context I have read every one of Elloy s novels My first exposure came in the form of his short story High Darktown which introduced me to The Black Dahlia protagonist Officer Lee Blanchard and his obsessions and demons I was hooked I devoured every word the man wrote before and since My favorite piece is still White Jazz the F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby last of the LA uartet and a sizzling piece ofiterature that still speaks to me in both style and substance This new work is part of a new uartet of novels that will Walled (The Line, link the LA uartet and the Underground Trilogy into one massive work that technically spans the years 1910 1972 and creates one whole body of work I applaud theevel of detail and the eye that Ellroy has for the city of LA which he is undoubtedly the Noire Poet Laureate of If you are Cruel Attachments: The Ritual Rehab of Child Molesters in Germany looking for a good old fashioned tale of dirty cops and the dirty deeds they do theook no further The main character of Perfidia is none other than the notorious Dudley Liam Smith who fans will recognize from his role in the LA uartet as being one of the most evil cops ever to wear a badge The story is pretty straightforward Smith and a brilliant Japanese ME Hideo Ashida must solve a string of murders during the period of the attack on pearl harbor In fact the book takes place in real time from Dec 6th to Dec 29th Soon enough Smith and Ashida find themselves cavorting in a war torn racist and savagely immoral LA where cops historical figures and Hollywood starlets cross paths and indulge in a variety of self destructive behaviors as a shadowy remorseless conspiracy threatens to destroy anybody caught near in its bloody vortex Its vintage Ellroy replete with crackling dialogue and enough gore to satisfy his most jaded devotee So what s the problem you ask Three major ones in my opinion The first one is Dudley Smith is a character beyond redemption and following his exploits is much ike reading Killer on the Road only there is no release from the evil deeds that Smith perpetrates The idea of a it takes evil to beat evil wears thin and the attempts to humanize such a monstrous figure fall flat Secondly Ellroy is simply incapable of writing ethnic characters convincingly Ashida seems ike a collection of CSI ike devices to move the investigation forward instead of a real character Combine that with the over used trope of him being in the closet and you get a ukewarm version of something Ellroy has done before and much better in the form of Deputy Danny Upshaw from the Big Nowhere The fact that Ashida worships these bad white men and will do anything to stay in their world is a bit color blind but doesn t ring true in its execution Much Tempting Fate like the way the Marshall Bowen character fails in Blood s a rover Ellroy s white world while entertaining for its banality is far too self conscious to explore the obvious racism of the time Characters just accept it and there roles thinking that their mere existence is the push back Lastly the other big character in the book is realife future chief of police William H Parker who Ellroy molds into a character that seems suitable to his world Frankly the characterization is so contrived and off the mark that those section are not only difficult to read mark that those section are not only difficult to read are nearly unbelievable But hey this is a work of fiction so that is a matter of taste and style I am sure that some will ove this book and herald it as Ellroy s return to the genre he oves My problem is I ve been sent this One Giant Leap loveetter by him before. Ri hanno già imparato ad amare o a odiare senza mezze misure dal sergente Dudley Smith all'infiltrata Kay Lake; dagli sbirri Lee Blanchard e Buzz Meeks al gangster ebreo Mickey Cohen Tutti di ualche anno più giovani rispetto ai tempi di Dalia nera e LA Confidential ma già immersi fino al collo in uell'intrico di verità e menzogna idealismo e violenza dentro il uale batte il cuore nero dell'Americ.