Re: RARA-AVIS: Ellroy

Date: 22 Nov 2002

> At 12:32 PM 21/11/2002 -0800, you wrote:
> >Can anybody here quote a paragraph from Ellroy
> >that, to them, shows him a great writer?
> Not me, but then I'd have the same difficulty reciting Ginsberg's HOWL from
> memory and I find the same kinetic energy in Ellroy's opening take-down in
> White Jazz. More so, in fact. Wasn't it the Detroit Free Press labelled
> Ellroy a "blood poet"? Spot on.

As long as we're speaking our minds based upon informed opinion here, let me weigh in again. Likening Ellroy to Ginsberg is like mentioning the work of Stan Lee (of Marvel Comics fame) in the same breath with that of Mario Puzo (of Godfather fame). We're talking about two different levels of work here
(although one thing that Ellroy and Puzo have in common is that they wrote one good work of fiction). I'm certain the Ellroy would be pleased by the comparison, but that should be expected.

Kerry, as for your earlier contention that Ellroy explores the themes of the "chaotic" 20th century world, I disagree whole-heartedly with that. IMO, the only landscape Ellroy is exploring (mytho-poetic or otherwise) is the interior landscape of his own dark, twisted psyche (which is part of what makes his non-fiction work, "My Dark Places" such riveting stuff). If he's working out his issues and getting paid for it, great for him. But I find nothing epic about his obsession with corruption, and *over*-emphasis on the profane.


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