Ellroy confidential

Ellroy confidential
James Ellroy: ‘I think I get better and better’. fergal phillips

James Ellroy’s hard-boiled, two-fisted crime novels are windows into a long-gone Los Angeles, with plenty of historical liberties being taken. ‘Absolute factual accuracy means nothing to me.’

James Ellroy would prefer that this article did not begin with an extended account of his difficult background. The unsolved murder of his mother is a source of trauma, the 71-year-old novelist says, but it’s not to be credited for his entry into the world of crime writing. So, rather than talking about that, or his years living on the streets of Los Angeles while addicted to drugs and alcohol, he chooses to start this interview from a safer place in his past: the point in his childhood when he began to devour the written word.

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