Los Angeles, 15th January 1947. A beautiful young woman walks into the night and meets a horrific destiny.
Five days later, her tortured body is found drained of blood and cut in half. The newspapers call her 'The Black Dahlia'. For two cops, what begins as an investigation becomes a hellish journey that takes them to the core of the dead girl's twisted life.
And soon professional curiosity spirals into obsession...
'A mesmerising study of the psycho-sexual obsession... extraordinarily well written' - The Times
'The outstanding crime writer of his generation' - The Independent
'A wonderful tale of ambition, insanity, passion and deceit' - Publishers Weekly
Narrator Hoye firmly nails young world-weary cop Bucky Bleichert in this audio version of Ellroy's 1987 crime novel. The flawed boxer-turned-lawman becomes obsessed with L.A.'s notorious unsolved 1947 torture-murder case, as well as the secret life of his missing partner, Lee Blanchard. Hoye proves a fine match for Ellroy's hardboiled prose, shuttling easily between hard and soft tones, crystallizing Bleichert's mix of cynicism, confusion, hurt and rage. Set in booming postwar Los Angeles, this tale of ambition, deceit and obsession builds to symphonic proportions. Throughout, Hoye skillfully modulates his narration to distinctly render each character corrupt cops, city officials, pimps, GIs, Mexican bar owners, prostitutes, society matrons and even the sound of a bullet piercing canvas. Hoye especially shines during heated police interrogations, able to shift his voice on a dime. The audio includes a new afterword from Ellroy, which might have delivered more punch had Ellroy read it himself. But in terms of this gritty, sprawling novel, Hoye was unquestionably the right man for the job. Simultaneous release with the Mysterious Press paperback movie tie-in (Reviews, Sept. 4, 1987).
An absolutely harrowing book that takes liberties with some of the facts and characters of a real life murder in 1940s Los Angeles, written by an author whose own mother was also murdered by an unknown attacker. Some of the imagery invoked is sickening, but this is excellent crime fiction nonetheless.
I didn’t finish the book. I got to part three and I really didn’t care. I didn’t really care about the characters. Feel as if I have wasted my time reading this book.