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A Little Yellow Dog (Easy Rawlins #5)

4.0 of 5 stars 4.00  ·  rating details  ·  2,252 ratings  ·  80 reviews
JFK is President and Ezekiel (aka Easy) Rawlins has a job with the Los Angeles Board of Education as a school janitor. No dogs are allowed on the school premises but Pharaoh, the dog in question, belongs to Idabell Turner, a curvaceous teacher whose husband has murder on his mind.
Paperback, 272 pages
Published September 5th 1997 by Picador USA (first published 1996)
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Tfitoby
“It was a regular family scene. All we had to do was clean up a few murders and a matter of international dope smuggling, then we could move next door to Donna Reed.”

Easy Rawlins is back. 1963, two years on from the disastrous end to Black Betty he is out of the doing favours for people business; living the straight life, working hard, keeping his head down and watching his two adopted children grow. But all that changes when a beautiful woman (aren't they always) pays him some attention, on her...more
Larry Bassett
If you read your first book in a mystery series and only gave it three stars, why would you move immediately on to the next book in the series? It is a mystery and I haven’t figured that out yet myself. In spite of the fact that the plot of the first book twisted my brain mercilessly, making me feel a little stupid, there was a good deal of captivating writing. I thought maybe I had missed something crucial and would catch up with it in a second book. Or maybe I am just having a moment of false...more
Dev
(3.2) I've said this before if you want to read crime fiction of LA in the 40's-70's, read James Ellroy, but then read the Ez Rawlins mysteries to get a handle on the black side of town during those turbulent, lawless times. Some of the tropes of the genre are here: the femme fatales and the loose women, the cops on the take and the desperate folk living on the margins of a city; however, the gamechanger is that the detective's black and that gives his desperation, his lone gunman like mentality...more
Cameron Wiggins
This is the first Walter Mosley novel that I have read, but I definitely plan on reading more of his work. A Little Yellow Dog is a good book, in my humble opinion. I stumbled across Mosley in another book I was reading. The main character was always picking up another Walter Mosley novel. I am glad that I did. Mosley is perhaps best known for Devil in a Blue Dress.
This novel takes place circa 1963 in Los Angeles when it is not so easy to be black. Easy Rawlins, a black man, is trying to get his...more
Cynthia Sinsap
By a certain point I started reading faster just to get it finished
Sandy Bookwitch
"It was the dog's fault..."

These are the words just after the title page instead of an author dedication in this volume.

Mosley's great hardboiled detective, Easy Rawlins, has been living a normal workingman's life the last couple years. No more prowlin' around "in the streets" as he says. He's got a great job, two great kids, he isn't drinking and life is fine as fine can be. Even his best buddy Mouse, a cold-blooded killer, is working for wages and contemplating the state of his immortal soul.

B...more
Cam
Another mystery that's great to see Mosley's observations about the times, race relations, philosophy, and the ever-evolving Easy Rawlins and his attempts to live a normal life even as he gets dragged into yet another situation almost beyond his control. His kids are growing up, he has a regular job as a facility supervisor with the school district that he finagled earlier, and he continues to read and enjoy great jazz and blues. One of his teacher's ends up leaving her dog with him as she skips...more
MB Taylor
I finished reading A Little Yellow Dog last night. As soon as I opened it I wondered why I don’t read more Mosley. I have 35 books by the guy and all but 7 are in my unread pile. I love his writing. Then as the story progressed I remembered why I don’t read them more quickly. He makes me feel the characters' pain too much.

Easy Rawlins is a great character and I’ve appreciated the stories of his life as they’ve progressed in time from 1948 (Devil in a Blue Dress) to 1962 (A Little Yellow Dog). I...more
Guy
“Alwéér Mosley?” Wel ja, ik hou niet zo van amuse-bouchekes. Als ik iets nieuws leer kennen – hetzij een band, een gerecht, een auteur – en het bevalt me, dan word ik gulzig, dan wil ik meer, dan wil ik het volledige palet geproefd hebben of op z’n minst weten waarover ik het heb als het eens ter sprake zou komen mocht ik iemand tegenkomen die er ook mee vertrouwd is. En omdat de hoofdstedelijke bibliotheek van Brussel zo’n fijne keet is die ervoor zorgt dat ik die boeken allemaal gratis kan lez...more
Ellen
Easy Rawlins tries to change his ways, but the streets just keep pulling him back to his old way of life.

I usually enjoy reading every book in the Easy Rawlins series, but this one was a little disappointing. Being a dog lover, I may have found this book less favorable because of the way the little yellow dog was portrayed. After all, the dog seemed to be the cause of Easy's misfortune throughout the novel, but really, it's due to his changed lifestyle. In that case, I think the dog hated Easy s...more
Carol Storm
I love the Easy Rawlins series, but the best books are the early ones, such as A RED DEATH, BLACK BETTY, and DEVIL IN A BLUE DRESS.

The trouble with this story is that it reads more like a soap opera. Easy keeps pining over his woman who's left, and then a new woman comes around, and it gets really tiresome. The kids he adopts are tiresome too. It's like he's trying too hard to prove he can be respectable.

Bring back Mouse!
Frank Jude
Sep 12, 2008 Frank Jude rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Hammett, Chandler and ther rest.
Shelves: fiction-novels
Easy Rawlins and his friends and lovers are a wonderful cast of characters. This noir-ish tale satisfies by playing with the 'genre' offering acute social commentary and sheer poetry at times. After describing a jazz trumpeter's soaring solo, the following passage takes the reader up to the flowery heavens and deposits her right back on earth:

"Lips sat down and wiped his face. The room cheered him. Cheered him for all the years he'd kept us alive in northern apartments living one on top of the o...more
Gina
Started by reading new Mosley and not going back to read or reread as I understand the family saga he is creating. what I loved about this one was the story of how Feather came to have the dog XXX who hates Easy. Because Easy tried to help a teacher @ Sojourner Truth jr high, but fails. The dog belongs to the dead teacher and in the end Easy can't give it away because Feather loves, etc. While trying to help him Mouse gets shot and since he is back with Etta Mae and sober, Etta Mae takes mouse a...more
Lynn G.
I didn't enjoy this book as much as I had other Walter Mosley books. Part of the problem is that this book is part of a series that features the character Easy Rawlins in each story, and I read A Little Yellow Dog first, not realizing that several of the other characters in the book were recurring. That aspect put me at a disadvantage. I wasn't able to really understand the history between and among all these characters as well as I should have and, likely, would have had I begun at the beginnin...more
Chana
I didn't enjoy it very much. Starts with the main character coming in to his job as the supervisor of the janitorial service in L.A. school district, finding a teacher there with her little dog. The dog is not allowed and he tells her so but they end up having sex on her desk and the main character gets stuck with babysitting the dog. Then someone turns up dead on school property. And the first lady, the teacher, she disappears after telling people that her dog got hit by a car.
There are more d...more
P.e.
This was a real good book. In this stoy Easy has a real paying job but trouble still finds him. He now must find the the ansewers to get himself off instead of someone else. There is a lot of twists in this story and Iliked this one very much. The dog does have a part in the story and Easy for a while thinks it might help him. The characters for the most part are the same afew different and some from the first book come into play to help him out. But it is still up to him to find the killer or k...more
Adam Hegg
This is my first Easy Rawlins book and I am quite taken. This is strange for me as I am a completist and always start with the first book in a series. This exception was made simply because a good friend of mine expressed a love of the character so I picked up the only book on the library featuring him.

This book was perfectly balanced for me considering I am in a light reading type of mood. The crime was easy to follow but still filled with enough twists and turns to keep me interested and I fe...more
Judith
This is the first of Walter Mosley's books that I'd read. It's an "Easy Rawlins" mystery... fast-paced, suspenseful, hard-hitting on the race relations problems of 1960s Los Angeles. Easy is the maintenance manager of a public school, with a good-sized staff and considerable responsibility - a far cry from his past life on the streets, in the company of very rough characters. Mosley himself is mixed race, white-black, and he writes with an interesting and informed perspective about both sides of...more
Jacqueline Avant
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
George Nicholis
2011. One of the better Easy Rawlins mysteries. Easy's now the head custodian at a high-school in L.A., trying to make it as a legit family man. But of course, a body shows up that ends up spinning his life upside down. The best part of these stories is the domestic relationship between Easy and his adopted son and daughter. Seeing how these kids have grown and how they react to their father coming home bloody, beaten, drunk and stabbed is heartbreaking. His kids are forced to grow up fast, and...more
Saz Gee
After Chandler & Macdonald, Mosley is the best
Steve
The fifth Easy Rawlins mystery takes place in 1963. Easy has turned his life around, and has been working as a maintenance supervisor for a city school for the past two years. Unfortunately, he becomes involved in a situation that drags him back into the criminal side of Los Angeles which he thought he had left behind. Soon, both the police and criminals are coming after him, and he needs to find a way back to the “normal” life that he’d been living. A great mystery and fast read.
Mary
1964: Easy has given up the street life and has taken on a job as a supervising custodian at Sojourner Truth High School. But his newly found carefree lifestyle is threatened when two corpses are discovered at the school and the police think Easy is involved.

I've read others in the Easy Rawlins series and I don't remember them being as dark as this one. There was just something I didn't enjoy about this book.
Nancy
I first picked up Walter Mosley because I'd read that he was one of Bill Clinton's favorite authors---made me curious. There's no doubt--Mosley's Easy Rawlins is a very charming character and his adventures through South L.A. are both interesting and enlightening. There is a fascinating moral code in Easy's world---which makes for good reading---and it is fun to speculate about his appeal to Clinton.
Mark Heeyeaah
Walter Mosley is a great writer. His style is clean and unlabored and his stories are classic examples of the genre. But he distinguishes himself within an otherwise formulaic genre (Crime Novels) by injecting his stories with rich African American culture and he is not shy about making race criticisms in the spirit of Langston Hughes and James Baldwin (although not quite the same ilk).
Greg Strandberg
All like all the books in this series, and this one was no different. What makes them so good is you see Easy's job as a janitor, well boss of janitors, and this book has a lot to do with the school.

The family relationships continue which is great, but the story and the little dog that hates Easy is good. Boy, writing this review right now makes me wish there were more of these books!
William
Interesting depiction of a life that I know almost nothing about. A little gritty in parts. I am not sure the police of !960's are quite as bad as described but what do I know. LA had a bad reputation when I got to California in 1967. I've had an aversion to it and even books about it ever since. The few scenes between Rawlins and the dog were delightful and very believable.
Judith
A Little Yellow Dog is one of Walter Mosley's Easy Rawlins mysteries, full of the easy sound of Mosley's prose and the hard living in Watts in the early 60s. Easy has a steady job now, supervising custodian of Sojourner Truth Junior High School, and even Mouse has gone straight. But when a corpse is found on the school grounds, Easy is a suspect with a rap sheet.
Frances
Walter Mosley has a gift for language. There were times when I had to stop and catch my breath. At first it was a little slow, took some time to get into the story and the characters but by the end of the novel, I felt like I knew them and cared about them. You'll learn more about black culture in the 60's. A sorrowful book with its moments of hope.
aPriL loves HalLowEen
I'm not sure I like Easy Rawlins in this book since his heart is almost darker than anything that has gone on in the previous books in the series. A very interesting mystery, but it left me wondering if Easy can survive his life much longer. His inability to trust is HUgE. Here's hoping Easy finds something give him succor in the next book.
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Walter Mosley (b. 1952) is the author of the bestselling mystery series featuring Easy Rawlins, as well as numerous other works, from literary fiction and science fiction to a young adult novel and political monographs. His short fiction has been widely published, and his nonfiction has appeared in the New York Times Magazine and the Nation, among other publications. Mosley is the winner of numero...more
More about Walter Mosley...
Devil in a Blue Dress (Easy Rawlins #1) The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey Black Betty (Easy Rawlins #4) Little Scarlet (Easy Rawlins #9) Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned

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“It was a regular family scene. All we had to do was clean up a few murders and a matter of international dope smuggling, then we could move next door to Donna Reed.” 4 likes
“Mrs. Turner gripped my baby finger.

It's amazing how a man can feel sex anywhere on his body.”
3 likes
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