My Dark Places by James Ellroy

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Synopsis

"Astonishing . . . original, daring, brilliant."
--Philadelphia Inquirer

In 1958 Jean Ellroy was murdered, her body dumped on a roadway in a seedy L.A. suburb.  Her killer was never found, and the police dismissed her as a casualty of a cheap Saturday night. James Ellroy was ten when his mother died, and he spent the next thirty-six years running from her ghost and attempting to exorcize it through crime fiction. In 1994, Ellroy quit running.  He went back to L.A., to find out the truth about his mother--and himself.  

In My Dark Places, our most uncompromising crime writer tells what happened when he teamed up with a brilliant homicide cop to investigate a murder that everyone else had forgotten--and reclaim the mother he had despised, desired, but never dared to love. What ensues is a epic of loss, fixation, and redemption, a memoir that is also a history of the American way of violence.

"Ellroy is more powerful than ever."
--The Nation  


From the Trade Paperback edition.
 

About James Ellroy

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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 best sellers. His novel American Tabloid was Time magazine's Best Book (fiction) of 1995; his memoir, My Dark Places, was a Time Best Book of the Year and a New York Times Notable Book for 1996. His novel The Cold Six Thousand was a New York Times Notable Book and a Los Angeles Times Best Book for 2001. Ellroy lives in Los Angeles.
 
Published September 22, 2009 by Vintage. 447 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Political & Social Sciences, Literature & Fiction, Crime. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for My Dark Places

Kirkus Reviews

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Ellroy's short, simple sentences set up a punchy but monotonous rhythm that's as unrelenting as a jackhammer--and as wearing, since the book, bogged down in background that indulges Ellroy's fascination with police procedure, is overly long.

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Publishers Weekly

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The novelist's gritty memoir features a new epilogue.

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Publishers Weekly

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Crime novelist Ellroy (American Tabloid) was 10 in 1958 when his mother, a divorced nurse and closet alcoholic, was found strangled to death in a deserted schoolyard in California's San Gabriel Valley.

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BC Books

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James Ellroy dives into the darkest of places: his mother's life and his own past.

May 18 2007 | Read Full Review of My Dark Places

BC Books

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It was the single incident that propelled Ellroy through a life as an introverted child, a teen criminal, a con, a drug addict, and finally a writer.

May 18 2007 | Read Full Review of My Dark Places

AV Club

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James Ellroy was 10 years old when his mother was raped and strangled, her corpse dumped on a playground in a white-trash L.A. suburb. Ellroy...

Mar 29 2002 | Read Full Review of My Dark Places

Entertainment Weekly

Having achieved success with a string of blackly hopeless crime novels, James Ellroy (American Tabloid, White Jazz, L.A.

Nov 15 1996 | Read Full Review of My Dark Places

Red Room

Ellroy is a product of the old writing adage, “write what you know.” He is an expert on LA crime and cops, as his life fell into its path in 1958, when his mother was brutally murdered and the crime unsolved.

Jul 10 2012 | Read Full Review of My Dark Places

Artswrap

Book review Book review: The Hilliker Curse: My Pursuit Of Women "Full Dark, No Stars": Stephen King's relentlessly horrible new book Trending on Artswrap The Fun Stuff - James Wood Believe - UK Tour - J...

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Reader Rating for My Dark Places
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