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A Good Place To Start

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American Tabloid 2

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Categorization is odious. There is tremendous overlap among genres. These pigeonholes are offered only as a convenience.

James Ellroy (1948 - )

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pmarca February 3rd, 2006 12:07 AM PST

Ellroy's masterpiece is "LA Confidential", a mindblowing fictionalized history of postwar Los Angeles. If you have seen the movie but not read the book, you are missing 90% of the story. If you liked the movie, you will love the book.

"LA Confidential" has both a prequel ("The Big Nowhere") and a sequel ("White Jazz").

"White Jazz" may be to "LA Confidential" what "Empire Strikes Back" was to "Star Wars". It also departs from Ellroy's usual three-protagonist approach by having a single protagonist (who may also be the toughest Ellroy character ever).

Ellroy's other masterpiece is "American Tabloid", which is a spellbinding fictionalized history of early '60's American history, particularly around JFK.

Ellroy's novels before "The Big Nowhere" were not that interesting, and his novels since "American Tabloid" have become stylized to the point of self-caricature and are largely unreadable.

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