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My Dark Places

James Ellroy: My Dark Places (UK 2010)

From the Publisher:
On 21 June 1958, Geneva Hilliker Ellroy left her home in California. She was found strangled the next day. Her 10 year-old son James had been with her estranged husband all weekend and was informed of her death on his return. Her murderer was never found, but her death had an enduring legacy on her son - he spent his teen and early adult years as a wino, petty burglar and derelict.

Only later, through his obsession with crime fiction, triggered by his mother's murder, did Ellroy begin to delve into his past. Shortly after the publication of his ground-breaking novel WHITE JAZZ, he determined to return to Los Angeles and with the help of veteran detective Bill Stoner, attempt to solve the 38-year-old killing.

The result is one of the few classics of crime non-fiction and autobiography to appear in the last few decades; a hypnotic trip to America's underbelly and one man's tortured soul.

James Ellroy: My Dark Places. America's Greatest Crime Writer Investigates his Mother's Murder. Windmill Books, ISBN: 9780099537847 (September, 2010), 416 p., £8.99.

 

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My Dark Places

James Ellroy: My Dark Places (USA 1997)

From the Publisher:
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.

James Ellroy: My Dark Places. An L.A. Crime Memoir. Vintage Books USA, ISBN: 0679762051 (August, 1997), 427 p., $14.95.

 

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My Dark Places

James Ellroy: My Dark Places (UK 1997)

From the Publisher:
On 21 June 1958, Geneva Hilliker Ellroy left her home in California. She was found strangled the next day. Her 10 year-old son James had been with her estranged husband all weekend and was informed of her death on his return. Her murderer was never found, but her death had an enduring legacy on her son - he spent his teen and early adult years as a wino, petty burglar and derelict. Only later, through his obsession with crime fiction, triggered by his mother's murder, did Ellroy begin to delve into his past. Shortly after the publication of his ground-breaking novel WHITE JAZZ, he determined to return to Los Angeles and with the help of veteran detective Bill Stoner, attempt to solve the 38-year-old killing. The result is one of the few classics of crime non-fiction and autobiography to appear in the last few decades; a hypnotic trip to America's underbelly and one man's tortured soul.

James Ellroy: My Dark Places. An L.A. Crime Memoir. Arrow, ISBN: 0099549611 (June, 1997), 351 p., £6.99.

 

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My Dark Places

James Ellroy: My Dark Places (USA 1996)

From the Publisher:
Jean Ellroy was murdered in 1958. Her body was dumped on a roadway in a run-down L.A. suburb. The killer was never found. The case was closed. It was a sordid back-page homicide that nobody remembered.

Except her son.

James Ellroy was ten years old when his mother died. His bereavement was complex and ambiguous. He grew up obsessed with murdered women and crime. His life spun hellishly out of control. He ran from the ghost of Jean Ellroy. He became a writer of radically provocative and best-selling crime novels. He tried to reclaim his mother through fiction. It didn't work. He quit running and wrote this memoir.

My Dark Places is Jean Ellroy's and James Ellroy's story - from 1958 to all points past and up to this moment. It is the story of a brilliant homicide detective named Bill Stoner, and of the investigation he and James Ellroy undertook to find Jean Ellroy's killer. My Dark Places is unflinching autobiography and vivid reportage. It is no less than a treatise on 38 years of American murder. It is James Ellroy's journey into and through his most forbidding memories.

James Ellroy: My Dark Places. An L.A. Crime Memoir. Alfred A. Knopf, ISBN: 0679441859 (November, 1996), 351 p., $25.00.

 

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