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Preview — Clandestine by James Ellroy
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"To Andy -
From the first page, you can notice that Ellroy's sensibility is closer to th ...more
I really liked the first half of the novel, and the cop who finds that his need for justice is too constrained by the police department. This is the formula that gives you Batman. It's also the formula that gives you Magneto. There's a dangerous line, and unlike many vigilante stories this one admits th ...more
He is indeed a master. His beautiful, lyrical writing of brutal and dark subjects is inspiring. I read this book many years ago and now have re-read it. It tells the story of a young ambitious policeman in Los Angeles who suspects a serial killer is at work in the deaths of two women. In t ...more
Plus side: a few of the characters are the most compelling of Ellroy's creations, I really didn't know what was really going on until the last chapter.
Downside: I had a very hard time understanding the motives of the very complex main character, Fred Underhill. Seems that Ellroy was trying to include as many disparate traits in one man as he could get away with, and I don't think he really does get away with it. ...more
The main character is something of a cipher and mishmash, at first an ambitious good guy but later like a younger Dudley Smith himself without much transitional explanation. Too many characters are too similar both in name and traits. The nine year-old(!) child who nearly looked like a man and acted like a perverted teenage delinquent, what was up with that? Why did our hero "fall in love" ...more
Los Angeles, 1951. A soli ventisei anni Freddy Underhill è già considerato un poliziotto di grande talento, destinato a una brillante carriera. Un giorno però viene assassinata una donna amica del detective e la polizia incarcera un innocente che, dopo un interrogatorio brutale, confessa e si suicida. Un errore madornale, per cui Underhill viene scelto come capro espiatorio. Lasciata la polizia, l'ex detective va alla deriva, si trasforma in un relitto umano. Ma quando, anni dopo, un'altra donna...more
All of Ellroy's later moves show clearly in this early work. His steady eye and steady hand dangling the narrative tangles above the blood, guts, and wonder of Los Angeles - a seething citywide hell bog that giveth and taketh away.
Certainly a good read for any Ellroy fan. But not the best pla ...more
The first part of the book is vintage, LA Quartet level Ellroy in which we follow our hero and his partner through their lives as LA patrolmen.
The second part of the book features three characters from the LA Quartet (including Dudley Smith) and plays out as an ethical character study and commentary on justice, due process and what being a man ...more
il personaggio di freddy pare un po' troppo raffazzonato, quasi che sia succube degli eventi (nessun ellroy's hero) è succube degli eventi; quello di lorna, invece, sembra troppo abbozzato e poco "pensato". lo spunto narrativo comunque è buono e la trama regge, al limite dell'impossibile, però, con qualche scivolone nel paradosso.
Set up ...more
This book came along as a ring book. Will be reading it soon.
At first I had a little difficulty getting into this book. A diiferent style of writing / placed in a different period with habits and objects I know the name of in Dutch but I'm not familiar with in English.
When I read over / through that, I liked the story.
Somewhere half way though, I thought of putting it down. It as quite violent, brutal and I started to dislike the book because of it. Not be ...more
I liked the book. it started off slow but then it really picked up. it's main character Freddy Underhill an ex cop goes on a hunt for revenge it gets a little confusing with all of the characters and twists and turns in the plot. overall it was a good read. definitely a book you ha ve to read in a short time or you have to refresh yourself if you take your time in reading it.
Supposedly, the story goes that the original submission for L.A. Noir was insanely long. The publisher wouldn't touch it until it was trimmed down, but Ellroy couldn't find anywhere to make cuts. A joking remark, 'Maybe I should take out all the and's and the's and stuff', led to the telegraphic style that makes his work so raw and brilliant.
Which is what fascinates me. All the other elements are here: th ...more
As a noir book, it not only hits the spot, it fulfills everything you can imagine. Except the ending. I am truly ambivalent about the ending. Is a noir book supposed to have a happy ending? Was this a happy ending? I recommend this book to anyone a fan of the genre, then answer the questions above.
A fast paced ending and an intricate plot save this book after an early resolution. A slow-moving middle section is thankfully not extensive. While it is fairly easy to guess who the villain ...more