An exclusive book club moderated by LARB's Editor-in-Chief Tom Lutz

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Tom Lutz handpicks four books a year and conducts an exclusive book club with LARB members. Books are shipped to your door in advance. The book club meeting is held on Facebook, and all members are sent an exclusive interview between Tom and the author, either by video or audio stream.

For questions about Tom’s Book Club, email us at membership@lareviewofbooks.org.

Our Next Book Club

PERFIDIA by James Ellroy

For the fifth installment of Tom's Book Club, Tom Lutz, founder and Editor-in-Chief of the Los Angeles Review of Books, has chosen James Ellroy's Perfidia (Knopf, September 2014). This epic, 700+ page novel by the "demon dog of American crime fiction" is an awe-inspiring vision of social, moral, and human chaos in wartime Los Angeles.

Thank you to all of our book club members who joined us live in person or via live stream with James Ellroy on December 6 at Emerson College Los Angeles! We'll announce our next book club selection at the beginning of the new year.

Become a LARB member for access to book club events and more.

About the Book

It is December 6, 1941. America stands at the brink of World War II. Last hopes for peace are shattered when Japanese squadrons bomb Pearl Harbor. Los Angeles has been a haven for loyal Japanese-Americans—but now, war fever and race hate grip the city and the Japanese internment begins.

The hellish murder of a Japanese family summons three men and one woman. William H. Parker is a captain on the Los Angeles Police Department. He’s superbly gifted, corrosively ambitious, liquored-up, and consumed by dubious ideology. He is bitterly at odds with Sergeant Dudley Smith—Irish émigré, ex-IRA killer, fledgling war profiteer. Hideo Ashida is a police chemist and the only Japanese on the L.A. cop payroll. Kay Lake is a twenty-one-year-old dilettante looking for adventure. The investigation throws them together and rips them apart. The crime becomes a political storm center that brilliantly illuminates these four driven souls—comrades, rivals, lovers, history’s pawns.

Perfidia is a novel of astonishments. It is World War II as you have never seen it, and Los Angeles as James Ellroy has never written it before. Here, he gives us the party at the edge of the abyss and the precipice of America’s ascendance. Perfidia is that moment, spellbindingly captured. It beckons us to solve a great crime that, in its turn, explicates the crime of war itself. It is a great American novel.

About James Ellroy
James Ellroy was born in Los Angeles in 1948. He is the author of the L.A. Quartet: The Black Dahlia, The Big Nowhere, L.A. Confidential, and White Jazz, and the Underworld U.S.A. Trilogy: American Tabloid, The Cold Six Thousand, and Blood’s A Rover. These seven novels have won numerous honors and were international best sellers. Ellroy currently lives in Los Angeles. www.jamesellroy.net

Previous Book Club Events

Helen Oyeyemi

Helen Oyeyemi Book Club / Discussion with Tom Lutz

June 16, 2014

David Grand

David Grand Book Club / Discussion with Tom Lutz

October 12, 2014



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