Ben’s review of The Black Dahlia (L.A. Quartet, #1) > Likes and Comments

Comments Showing 1-46 of 46 (46 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony This your first Ellroy, sir?

message 2: by Ben (new)

Ben Sure is. Figured I'd have to give him a try given all the raves from you GR friends.

message 3: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony He's a genius. I wonder what the other ravers think of this one...don't wait as long as me with the Hemingway to write your review, sir, I'm looking forward to it:)

message 4: by Matt (new)

Matt What do you think of his later work, RA? I'm reading 'American Tabloid' currently and find that stilted prose style to be sort of addicting.

message 5: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony I love Ellroy, Tad, but I can't keep his books straight. They all run together after a while. I'm reading his new one now, and his stilted prose is in full effect.

I read an article yesterday about Ellroy's love of classicial music. Apparently he's a Beethoven fanatic.

message 6: by [deleted user] (new)

I wish I had a nickel for every time RA has typed 'sir' on this website.

message 7: by Chris (new)

Chris I wish I had a dime for every time someone wished they had a nickel. That would be a shitload of dimes.

message 8: by Ben (last edited Sep 28, 2009 12:17PM) (new)

Ben His style doesn't seem all that unusual or stilted to me. A little, sure, but not in the extreme measure I had expected.* Maybe I'm just not picking up on it? Did those of you who read this, along with some of his other work, find the writing style in The Black Dahlia different from some of the others?

*This has been a pleasant surprise, by the way.

message 9: by Chris (new)

Chris Ben -- I've only read The Black Dahlia and My Dark Places and the writing style is completely different: relatively normal in the former, stilted and practically unreadable in the latter.

message 10: by Ben (last edited Sep 28, 2009 12:48PM) (new)

Ben Thanks, Chris. Now I wonder if he changes it up depending on the book, or -- I see he wrote The Black Dahlia many years before My Dark Places -- if he happened to change his style sometime inbetween the two, keeping with the new style consistently since the change.

message 11: by Chris (new)

Chris In the thread for my review of My Dark Places, brian wrote:

"rumor goes that when ellroy handed in the manuscript for white jazz the publishing company told him it was way too big and he hadda cut much out. rather than cut out scenes and b-plots, ellroy decided to take out every unnecessary word, thus arriving at his trademark style. not sure if it's true, but it sounds cool."

message 12: by Megha (new)

Megha Chris wrote: "In the thread for my review of My Dark Places, brian wrote:

"rumor goes that when ellroy handed in the manuscript for white jazz the publishing company told him it was way too big and he hadda cut..."

I am reading American Tabloid currently. His style here does include incomplete sentences and missing words, but it is not unreadable, at least so far. In fact, I am really enjoying his writing.

message 13: by Ben (last edited Sep 28, 2009 01:27PM) (new)

Ben Perfect, that answers my question. Thanks again, Chris. Recalling your review, I think my reaction to his newer style would be similar to yours. Obviously some people prefer it, though, so I guess the next Ellroy I try will be one with that trademark style.

I'll just give up after 50 pages if it wears on me. (I'm a quitter like that.)

message 14: by Chris (new)

Chris I'm actually thinking about reading that one soon, Megha, and I'm hoping I'll enjoy the writing more than My Dark Places. It's good to hear that you're enjoying it.

message 15: by Ben (new)

Ben Thanks, Megha. That's good to know.

message 16: by Gary (new)

Gary I was an ellroy virgin till i read BLACK DAHLIA. liked it.

i can't find AMERICAN TABLOID in bookstores. i have book #2,and will wait till book # 3 comes out in paperback. i want to read them in order. i guess i am going to have to bite the bullet and order it. however, i plan on looking when in kansas city this weekend!

message 17: by Gary (new)

Gary I found it today in a Barnes and Noble at the Plaza in the old Macy's store building. Snatched it up, so now I have it!

message 18: by Gary (new)

Gary made comments on sarah's review of MY DARK PLACES.

message 19: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony Was the book not emo enough for you?


message 20: by Ben (new)

Ben HAHA!!! It was well-written and very clever, yet I didn't enjoy it. I'll try to explain.

message 21: by RandomAnthony (new)

RandomAnthony No, I hear you. This might have been my least favorite Ellroy, but I didn't want to say that early on and color your perceptions.

message 22: by Kim (new)

Kim That's a lot of use of italics, Ben...

message 23: by Ben (last edited Oct 27, 2009 07:57AM) (new)

Ben Heh. Surely overdone. We'll just call it experimentation.

message 24: by Kim (new)

Kim Or... Snark. ;)

message 25: by Colin (new)

Colin McKay Miller Ah, the problem of what people should like...

Agreed on the part about being predisposed to liking something. Nerds are the worst about that (though they'll--really, we'll--claim others are).

message 26: by Kimley (new)

Kimley Ellroy and Roth - I'm so confused. Can't decide whether or not to read either of them.

message 27: by Ben (last edited Oct 27, 2009 10:38AM) (new)

Ben I've read only one from each, and didn't like either. I'll try Roth again, but Ellroy I can tell is never gonna be my bag. You should probably try both at some point in time, though, given their reputations. Don't you think?

message 28: by [deleted user] (last edited Oct 27, 2009 12:23PM) (new)

Don't be so sure about Ellroy, Benji. This book didn't exactly give me a handy either -- I didn't even bother to finish it -- but I'm currently reading Ellroy's American Tabloid, and it's an ass-kicking, names-taking hardcore adrenaline rush. Very different (I think) from this book...

message 29: by Kimley (new)

Kimley Yeah, Ben, I'm not actually undecided on whether or not to read these two writers. Obviously, anyone who can bring about such antagonistic responses is worth at least checking out. The main problem is trying to decide which work to start with.

message 30: by Ken (last edited Oct 27, 2009 05:35PM) (new)

Ken Crime writer? I've got far to go in that genre. Got stuck at the crossroads of Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett. With intersections like that, who needs to drive on?

(P.S. Shallow comment of the day: When it comes to books, there are certain covers that I'd just hate to carry around. This looks like one of 'em.)

message 31: by Ben (new)

Ben Don't let me dissuade you, Newengland. If you like those other guys, you could love Ellroy; plus, I know you like tough-guy, macho books, and there are tons of tough guys in this.

And you are absolutely correct about the cover. I carried this thing around the airport with me, and you should have seen the looks I got. Surely they were unread fools if they judged ME by the book's cover, but what can one do? Most people ARE unread fools. : )

message 32: by Bram (last edited Oct 28, 2009 12:30PM) (new)

Bram Kimley wrote: "Ellroy and Roth - I'm so confused. Can't decide whether or not to read either of them."

Me neither Kimley. I've been close to reading each of them a couple times now, but these mixed messages are tough.

I worry about where to start with a lot of authors and then usually just pick up something else. While I'm thinking about this, where should I start with Kafka?

message 33: by [deleted user] (last edited Oct 28, 2009 01:09PM) (new)

While I'm thinking about this, where should I start with Kafka?

No contest. "The Metamorphosis" and then The Trial. The Castle is kind of a pain in the ass. I've never read Amerika.

message 34: by Bram (new)

Bram Awesome, thanks. Got any info on translations? I think I was actually temporarily defeated in my Kafka quest by mixed messages on translations. I really obsess over translations and am convinced that they have an impact ranging from mild to medium.

message 35: by Kimley (new)

Kimley As usual, David is right. The cockroach is the place to start with Kafka!

message 36: by Eddie (new)

Eddie Watkins The Country Doctor!

message 37: by Kimley (new)

Kimley The Trial however is probably the best example of the word "Kafkaesque".

message 38: by Eddie (new)

Eddie Watkins I think Harold Bloom prefers this version:

though I've never made a comparison myself.

message 39: by Bram (new)

Bram Thanks for the info, Eddie. I may keep an eye out for that version.

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio Kimley wrote: "The Trial however is probably the best example of the word "Kafkaesque"."

I was looking for a clip of this scene in The Squid and the Whale where the kid is trying to impress this girl and he refers to Kafka as being "very Kafkaesque." It's pretty funny. But I found this instead. I'd forgotten all about this show:

message 41: by Kimley (new)

Kimley MFSO, this link goes to your search results page. Which clip did you mean to link to?

Pretty funny just how many "Kafkaesque" results you got!

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio Whoops. This was what I meant to link to:

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio That show would be pretty hilarious to watch again. That's some early 90s kitsch right there.

message 44: by Kimley (new)

Kimley Ha ha - yes, teenage angst is indeed very Kafkaesque! The transforming boobs shot especially!

message 45: by Gary (new)

Gary notice i said i liked it.not loved it. i am really looking forward to hitting AMERICAN TABLOID, because i have heard from others ,even not on the website on how great it is,and different then this book.

message 46: by Jane (new)

Jane I was beginning to think that I was only GR s reader who didn't like the book. It started as a crime novel, a murder and detective, a who done it. But it twisted into a Great Gatsby/ 50 Shades/ and what else? Corruption from all angles. I forced myself to finish, hoping for a speck of justice. Alas, not to be.

back to top