“This Storm” by James Elroy is classic noir fiction that transports readers into the turbulent world of World War II Los Angeles, a city gripped by war, pessimism, resignation, and moral ambiguity. The sentence structure matches the mood with short sentences, .quick descriptions, and no-nonsense conversations.
“Note the tattoo. It’s there on the right forefinger-thumb web. It’s an “SQ” circled by snakes. Remember Tommy Glennon’s tattoo stencil? It’s flat out just like that.”
Readers are immersed in 1941 Los Angeles, the people, the blackouts, the contentious politics, the uncertainty, the fear, but mostly and the individual stories and the personal tragedies. The characters are crude and rude, yet focused and straightforward. The conversations are politically incorrect and exceedingly real. The story begins when an unusually intense rain and the resulting mud slides unearth a body in Griffith Park.
“Let’s go. We’ve got mud slides in Griffith Park. They’ve dislodged a body by the golf course.”
Characters pull readers into the narrative, almost talking directly to them, allowing them to eavesdrop on conversations and thoughts, throwing them into turmoil in the midst of regular life in L.A. Every detail reinforces the time
“This Storm” is filled with war, domestic spies, counter-intelligence, and political misdeeds. I received a copy of “This Storm” from James Elroy and Random House Publishing. It is a wild ride from the first page to the last. I recommend that you plan your time carefully because once you start “This Storm” you will not put it down until the end.