California Girl by T. Jefferson Parker
A Novel

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The Orange County, California, that the Becker brothers knew as boys is no more—unrecognizably altered since the afternoon in 1954 when Nick, Clay, David, and Andy rumbled with the lowlife Vonns, while five-year-old Janelle Vonn watched from the sidelines. The new decade has ushered in the era of Johnson, hippies, John Birchers, and LSD. Clay becomes a casualty of a far-off jungle war. Nick becomes a cop, Andy a reporter, David a minister. And a terrible crime touches them all in ways they could never have anticipated when the mutilated corpse of teenage beauty queen Janelle Vonn is discovered in an abandoned warehouse.


About T. Jefferson Parker

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Novelist T. Jefferson Parker was born in Los Angeles, California in 1953. He earned a bachelor's degree in English from the University of California, Irvine, in 1976, and initially worked as a reporter for a weekly newspaper. While writing for the Daily Pilot, he won three Orange County Press Club Awards. His first novel, Laguna Heat, was made into an HBO movie starring Harry Hamlin, Jason Robards and Rip Torn. His other works include The Triggerman's Dance, Where Serpents Lie, The Blue Hour, Red Light, and Cold Pursuit. Silent Joe and California Girl won the Mystery Writers of America's Edgar Award for Best Novel in 2002 and 2005 respectively. Silent Joe also received the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Best Mystery/Thriller. When not working on his books, Parker spends his time with his family, hiking, hunting and fishing, and playing tennis. He enjoys diving, snorkeling, and travel.
Published October 13, 2009 by HarperCollins e-books. 416 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Business & Economics, History, Action & Adventure. Fiction

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When the same setting is cordoned off as a murder scene fifteen years later, in October, 1968, with Janelle the brutally mistreated victim, Nick Becker, homicide detective for Tustin PD, is there.

Sep 01 2004 | Read Full Review of California Girl: A Novel

Book Reporter

While three of his novels (THE BLUE HOUR, BLACK LIGHT and BLACK WATER) have featured detective Merci Rayborn, most of his books have been stand-alone works, with Parker choosing to let each of his novels rise or fall on its own merits.

Dec 26 2010 | Read Full Review of California Girl: A Novel

Entertainment Weekly

Originally posted Oct 01, 2004 Published in issue #786 Oct 01, 2004 Order article reprints

Oct 01 2004 | Read Full Review of California Girl: A Novel

Reviewing the Evidence

T Jefferson Parker reconstructed the turmoil of the Vietnam era in Orange County, California in his last book, RED LIGHT.

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Bookmarks Magazine

Tom Nolan Knight Ridder 3.5 of 5 Stars "Set mainly in 1968 Southern California, Parker’s novel is an evocative trip back to the days of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll, hippies, LSD, Charles Manson, Richard Nixon, peace protests and the rising anger against the war in Vietnam.

Oct 10 2007 | Read Full Review of California Girl: A Novel

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