We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access .
The Black Dahlia Audiobook

The Black Dahlia

Regular Price:$23.93
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Publisher's Summary

On January 15, 1947, the tortured body of a beautiful young woman was found in a vacant lot in Hollywood. Elizabeth Short, the Black Dahlia, a young Hollywood hopeful, had been brutally murdered. Her murder sparked one of the greatest manhunts in California history.

In this fictionalized treatment of a real case, Bucky Bleichert and Lee Blanchard, both LA cops obsessed with the Black Dahlia, journey through the seamy underside of Hollywood to the core of the dead girl's twisted life.

©1987 James Ellroy; (P)2006 Random House, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Passionate, violent, frustrating...imaginative and bizarre." (Los Angeles Times)
"Ellroy's powerful rendering of the long-reaching effects of murder gives the case new meaning." (Library Journal)
"Building like a symphony, this is a wonderful, complicated but accessible tale of ambition, insanity, passion, and deceit, with the perfect setting of booming, postwar Los Angeles." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (540 )
5 star
 (181)
4 star
 (166)
3 star
 (117)
2 star
 (34)
1 star
 (42)
Overall
4.0 (289 )
5 star
 (116)
4 star
 (90)
3 star
 (55)
2 star
 (13)
1 star
 (15)
Story
4.2 (285 )
5 star
 (134)
4 star
 (92)
3 star
 (41)
2 star
 (8)
1 star
 (10)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    krista New Orleans, LA, United States 09-12-06
    krista New Orleans, LA, United States 09-12-06 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    62
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    17
    14
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "Entertaining."

    I enjoyed this listen, but would strongly warn those easily offended by violence, racial slurs, bias, language, and the like to choose an alternative. That said, this novel takes some time getting started as a good deal of time is devoted to establishing main character back story, but upon the discovery of "The Dahlia," the plot snaps along without losing any momentum or quality. Sometimes depressing, sometimes outright funny, sometimes uplifting, this novel easily takes its rightful place within the Noir/Crime genre, and for those who enjoyed "L.A. Confidential," it is a sure bet. **Bonus author interview included wherein author identifies his thought processes and motivations associated with the writing of "The Black Dahlia."

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Grasshopper.Craig Hidden Valley, CA 09-10-06
    Grasshopper.Craig Hidden Valley, CA 09-10-06 Member Since 2014

    Craig

    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Great naration"

    The book was very good, one of the better Audible listens in the two plus years that I've been a member. The narator deserves special mention: Without a doubt, the best naration of all the books I've listened to since joining Audible.

    13 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane Estevan, SK, Canada 09-23-06
    Jane Estevan, SK, Canada 09-23-06 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    48
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    25
    15
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "An oddly compelling story"

    Filled with spooky noir nuances, outrageous storylines and complex characters, this is a don't miss book. That's not to say that it doesn't have it's flaws. There are some plot points that make very little sense, and some of the story is downright gory. However, as a whole, it makes for great listening, full of old Hollywood lore and 40's detective lingo.
    I purchased and downloaded this well before the film release, fully intending to have it listened to before I saw the movie. I'm actually glad that I didn't read the book before the movie, because while the movie stands on it's own as entertainment, it is nothing next to the book. It's lengthy and requires your full attention, but I think you will find it's worth it.

    12 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Roseau, MN United States 03-21-11
    Amazon Customer Roseau, MN United States 03-21-11 Listener Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Black Dahlia"

    I woudn't recommend this book for anyone who cannot handle violence in their literature . . . that being said, the book was very compelling and didn't just cover the tragedy of the murder of a young woman; it also gave us a look at the darkness of the lives of our main characters. Being able to get a picture of what drove the characters to be portrayed in the manner they were helped the book flow better and gave insight to their actions. After reading this book I was driven to do internet searches and learn more about the true crime that occured - I had never heard of the Black Dahlia before. I did feel a little lost in the final chapters of the book as I felt they skipped around a lot; however I did walk away from the story feeling like justice was served in the story (and hopefully in real life). I have recommended this book to several of my friends.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    psykoace 04-23-08
    psykoace 04-23-08 Listener Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    19
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "GREAT BOOK"

    Let me say I am a rabid fan of James Ellroy.
    His genius is that he goes into his characters souls and he understands the human soul very well.
    Be aware that his mother was murdered in much the same way The Dahlia was murdered. This should give you more insight into of his characters feelings for The Dahlia.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ken Pittsburgh, PA, United States 03-14-07
    ken Pittsburgh, PA, United States 03-14-07 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    14
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Great Read"

    Ellroy immerses you in postwar L.A. His writing is as close as one can get to a time machine. And, yes, his writing is about the characters' reacting to the Dahlia murders: good fiction -- even good crime fiction -- is always about character.

    If only L.A. Confidential and The Big Sleep were available in unabridged versions. Ellroy simply can't be abridged/

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joe 09-22-06
    Joe 09-22-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Enthralling"

    Ellroy's rendering of post-war LA and its cops and their culture enthralled me as much as anything in this very entertaining book. That, together with strong, full characters, a believable plot and well-pitched narration, make this one of my favorite selections so far.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    chris 03-26-15
    chris 03-26-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "captivating"

    loved it, captured my attention the way through. Any hard driven detective can relate, and this book showed me the noir history of Los Angeles, be that it's fictional it still maintained a truth of history.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alyssa 06-21-16
    Alyssa 06-21-16 Member Since 2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    16
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The Black Dahlia"

    This book is definitely not for the faint of heart. Sometimes vulgar; sometimes explicit; sometimes downright gory. If you can stomach the vivid scenes depicted, it's a wonderful read. The narration is top notch. Hoye brings the story to life in ways most narrators tend to miss. The story itself is incredibly riveting, minus a couple "where did that even come from?" moments, it will keep you on your toes til the end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terry Warwick, NY United States 06-10-16
    Terry Warwick, NY United States 06-10-16 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    44
    9
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The best listening experience in 3 years!"

    Just finished listening and I am still reeling from the author's powerful prose. Excellent "film noir" atmosphere - the narrator's performance was absolutely superb! His voice was so versatile and compelling, it really made me stick with this book. I know I would have put it down if I was just reading by myself. His voice and the narrative take you right back to the 1940's, right after WWII. The writing is excellent - the subject matter is almost beyond a nightmare, not for faint hearted. The narrative is gritty, somewhat pornographic and definitely not of our politically correct times. I have to admit I found parts of it offensive. It was not easy to listen to, but the dialogue sounded authentic to how policemen must have spoke at the time.
    The storyline had so many highs and lows - twists and turns, especially near the end!
    This book is a work of fiction, based on two murders, one famous murder of a young woman in California and another murder of the author' s own mother. It's not just a crime drama, it's a study of obsession, guilt and redemption.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.