James Ellroy – The Hilliker Curse – short review

The Hilliker Curse: My Pursuit of WomenThe Hilliker Curse: My Pursuit of Women by James Ellroy

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

As you would expect from Ellroy, the prose has a spark and rhythm that pulls you through from start to finish at pace. It’s more relaxed than The Cold Six Thousand, but then this is a memoir and it would be amiss to expect something in the same ilk.

For those of you who want exacting details of events, from early childhood to the present day, you’re going to be disappointed. Be sure, this is a thematic memoir that deals strictly with one aspect of Ellroy’s life: women. Everything that else that has happened in his life, from his wayward beginnings to the intricate and spellbinding novels, are just sideshows. Only Bloods a Rover is mentioned by name.

That said, by exploring this thread of his life, it’s easy to see why his novels turned out as they did, and for this reason it’s a revealing read. The themes in his books mirror the themes in his life so closely.

If you like Ellroy, you’ll like this. If you’ve never read Ellroy, go and do so first.

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