At first I thought I wouldn't be able to listen to this because of Ellroy's sentence style. I counted something like 15 sentences in a row that began with the word WAYNE. At first the style seemed like a parody but later I realized how brilliant it was. The style captures the blunt and brutal character of the key individuals portrayed and of the roll bigotry and hatred played in 1960's USA. If you listen to this you must pay attention. Ellroy's unique style, the complexity of the story, and the fact that this author (refreshingly) doesn't insult his reader's intelligence all demand that you think as you listen. This is an amazing story told poetically. You might back up the audio to catch an important sentence you missed, (Ellroy claims there is not an unnecessary or wasted word in the book. Actually I think I caught one somewhere around the 18th hour) but chances are better that you'll back to listen again to his beautifully crafted writing. If you listen to the sample and are put off by the style you may be doing yourself a disservice. In short time you'll adjust to the style, and before long you'll be addicted to it.
This book has go to be the biggest insult to a reader's intelligence in years. Don't believe the hype. If you aren't comatose, you'll easily see each "revelation" coming long before the author drops it on you as if revealing something extraordinary. Brown even has a character (Sophie) whose main literary purpose appears to be repeating anything important said by other characters just in case the reader isn't paying attention.
If you like the idea of this book, do yourself a favor and read Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose instead. It's vastly superior.
Don't believe the radical right negative reviews. Do your own thinking about this book.
This story was completely engaging and beautifully read.
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