Re: RARA-AVIS: La -La Land

From: M Blumenthal (
Date: 23 Sep 2001

John Lau wrote

> Since the theme of this month is still Los Angeles, I'm surprised no one's
> mentioned the LA LA Land books by Robert Campbell. I've got an excuse,
> never read them. But that's because no self respecting native of Los
> Angeles, as few of us as there may be, would ever refer to El Lay as La La
> Land.

When I introduced the topic I included a quote from Campbell's In La- La Land We Trust. I'm almost finished with Alice in La-La Land. Before this I had only read his Jimmy Flannery books. The Jimmy Flannery books are not hard boiled, and I don't think they are great as mysteries, but they give a great picture of Richard M. Daley's Chicago as it is popularly perceived. and are funny. I think his His La La books are meant to do the same with Los Angeles, but his city is the one at Hollywood and Vine. Once you accept his is people are grotesques, the books are ok.

BTW, Campbell's detective, Whistler, like Bosch and Elvis Cole, lives in a stilt house in the hills. I guess that's the way to live in Los Angeles even though, as Whistler says, "In summer I'm afraid of the brushfires charging down the hillside. In winter I'm afraid the rains will wash me down on top of the traffic. In between I'm afraid I'll walk in my sleep and take a dive off the balcony."

That's a lot different view than Elvis Cole's who seems to regard his house and its location as idyllic.

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