American Tabloid has ratings and reviews. Kemper said: James Ellroy has called me a panty sniffer to my face. Granted, he calls everyone at hi. First it was Bruce Willis, then Tom Hanks and now James Franco: multiple actor- turned-director-producers have tried to adapt James Ellroy’s. Although it follows his L.A. Trilogy chronologically, Ellroy’s visceral, tightly American Tabloid. James Ellroy, Author Knopf Publishing Group $25 (5p) ISBN.
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Edgar Hoover, Howard Hughes, Jimmy Hoffa, Cuban political exiles, and various loose cannons conspire in a covert anarchy Where three renegade law-enforcement officers—a former L. Learn more click to open popover Customers who viewed this item also viewed Page 1 of 1 Start over Page 1 of 1 This shopping feature will continue to load items. In order to navigate out of this carousel please use your heading shortcut key to navigate to the next or previous heading.
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Brilliance Audio; Unabridged edition September 6, Language: Start reading American Tabloid: Don’t have a Kindle?
Try amsrican Kindle edition and experience these great reading features: Is this feature helpful? Thank you for your feedback. Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a customer review. Showing of reviews. Top Reviews Most recent Amwrican Reviews. There was a jzmes filtering reviews right now. Please try again later. In particular, he crafts three white lawmen or in one case, a former lawman who find themselves working together and against each other in dealings with the mafia, the FBI, the CIA, Cuban refugees after Castro’s revolution, and the Kennedy family.
Almost every page in the book is plausible and I found myself frequently checking the names of minor characters online to see if they were real people. The story is so compelling and the characters so convincingly portrayed that I think my impressions of J Edgar Hoover, Jack Kennedy, and others may be permanently changed, despite the fact that intellectually I know this book is a work of fiction.
James Ellroy’s American Tabloid: will it ever make it to the big screen?
So why just four stars? First, Ellroy is weak in crafting the voices of his characters. They may be southern or northern, educated or not, of Irish or Italiian or Cuban background, but they all basically talk the same. Near the beginning he tries to explain this by saying that two of the characters one from Quebec and the other from Alabama had worked hard to eliminate their childhood accents, but this comes across as pleading by Ellroy for us to forgive his inability to give them believable voices.
In scenes where several of these characters are talking with each other, it can be hard to tell who is saying what.
A line like “I hear you are working for Hoover now” could come from the mouth of any of them, directed to any of the others. Second, Ellroy rushed the end of the book. He knew he wanted to get to Dallas, Novemberand it feels like at some point mid in the narrative he felt pressed for time.
He speeds up the story, skips details, character motivations become less believable, plot holes are left open. The story’s final conceit, that Jack Kennedy was killed as a way to stop Bobby Kennedy’s prosecution of the mob, doesn’t really work given what has been established about the Kennedy family by that point especially the fact that much sllroy the Kennedy family’s own money, in this story, comes from financing mob activities.
Finally, and this is a minor point, with the exception of a brief bit about Marilyn Monroe, the story is almost relentlessly dark. The book would have benefitted from more humor, interludes to give the reader a break from the darkness and desperation. Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase. Kennedy as a Yankee Bill Clinton. Edgar Hoover as an American Stalin. And Jimmy Hoffa, Joe Pesci-style.
You can’t hate a book that gives you these images. Parts are intriguing might-have-been history; eklroy are ridiculously false; parts are out-and-out absurd. And yet, the book entertains, fascinates, and resonates. In portraying America in the Kennedy years, Ellroy chainsaws one of our sacred cows; it’s almost as if Seymour Hersch decided to write gleeful trash for “The Enquirer.
Such devices are not neccesarily bad; however, like a precocious kid chiding his mom for crying during a film, they tend to remind the reader that the book in hand is, after all, nothing more than an entertaining story. And yet, as such, there is much to like. Ellroy’s lightning-fast style is at its best here, the clipped jamrs just brusque enough to paint the picture. Too, interesting characters inhabit the multi-layered plot; perhaps most interesting is the “Death Wish”-like transformation of wimp FBI agent Ward Littell into a stone-cold mob lawyer.
Which brings to mind a might-have-been of my own: Martin Luther King, Jr. Yet somehow, AMERICAN TABLOID overcomes these flaws, carves out rules of its own, and holds the reader’s attention from first page to disappointing last, proving positively that Ellroy is not just a crackerjack crime writer; he has artistic fingers on the pulse of the mainstream as tablkid.
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: American Tabloid (): James Ellroy, Christopher Lane: Books
People spitting their teeth out. Is that what you look for in a novel? Uames you are in the right gutter. Kindle Edition Verified Purchase. In other reviews of this book, much has been made of the clipped writing style that James Ellroy used for this novel. Suffice it to say that the technique’s novelty did not wear out before I got to the last page, but I don’t know if I could handle reading a second novel written in this fashion. The characters are so hard boiled that you could hammer nails with them, and Ellroy renders historical characters in such a breezy, freewheeling manner that it feels as though one might walk through your door in the next minute.
Not that you’d want to spend any personal time with these violent sleazeballs. Edgar Hoover spring vividly to life, and no peccadillo is too taboo for Ellroy’s characters to ruminate over as they jostle back and forth between the historical interludes, rendered as secret agency memos and headlines, which serve as bookends for each chapter. You don’t so much as identify with these characters, as you do identify against them and root for their demise.
Jamws might need a shower or two after reading this thing. See all reviews. Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers.
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