Monday, January 31, 2011
Review: The Black Dahlia
On January 15, 1947, the body of a beautiful young woman was found in a vacant lot in Hollywood. The victim, a Massachusetts-born aspiring actress, quickly became known as the Black Dahlia, lending Elizabeth Short in death a fame that she never enjoyed in life. In this much-acclaimed novel, originally published in 1987, James Ellroy transforms a ghoulish morgue story into a garish crime hunt through hell.
This was a read-a-long with the book club over at The Lost Entwife's blog. I've not really ventured very far into the True Crime section of the bookstore/library, so I wasn't sure what to expect. This was definitely a departure from my normal reading fare. I'm not entirely sure I liked it or not.
There were a couple of things that made me a bit squeamish about this book. The language. Yeah, I know that it fits with the time period but I'm not down with the "n" bomb and such. The sexist language was also a stumbling block for me. I guess I'm just too sensitive about that. A product of my generation maybe? Who knows. I just know it kept me from fully immersing myself into this book.
I did like the story though. I mean I wanted more about the real case, but I liked the story about Lee and Bucky and how they came together to her case. I won't go into details because I do think that this was a decent book and I don't want to spoilerize things. I do think I'll recommend this to people that have a tendency to enjoy crime stories.
I did like it all-in-all, grumps about it and all. I think I may have went into it thinking it was going to be one thing but it turned out to be something else, if that makes sense?