*Read all of first-round matchups in the Best L.A. Novel Ever tournament.

*Read the essay kicking off the tournament and see the complete brackets.

We read Evelyn Waugh and James M. Cain. We plowed through Dominick Dunne and gave the unjustly neglected Kate Braverman a chance. We learned What Makes Sammy Run and finally figured out why They Shoot Horses, Don't They?.

It's taken us four months, but we finally finished the first round of our tournament seeking the Best L.A. Novel Ever. There were some major upsets: Managing Editor Jill Stewart declared that Michael Connelly's Black Echo is better than Raymond Chandler's The Big Sleep. Sacrebleu! F. Scott Fitzgerald got knocked out in Round 1. So did T. Coraghessan Boyle, John Gregory Dunne and Charles Bukowski.

All the action continues next week, when we'll attempt the impossible and choose a winner between The Loved One and Play It As It Lays. 'Til then, here are the updated brackets — let us know in the comments section your prediction for the book that'll go all the way.

And make sure to check out any match-ups you've missed; we've provided a complete list below.

The Hollywood Region

The Hollywood Region

The Rebels & Outcasts Region

The Rebels & Outcasts Region

The Lost Souls Region

The Lost Souls Region

The Noir Region

The Noir Region

Round 1 match-ups:


The Last Tycoon vs. The Loved One

What Makes Sammy Run? vs. The Player

An Inconvenient Woman vs. Play It As It Lays

They Shoot Horses, Don't They? vs. The Day of the Locust


Oil! vs. The Revolt of the Cockroach People

If He Hollers Let Him Go vs. Locas

The Tortilla Curtain vs. The Tattooed Soldier

Tropic of Orange vs. A Single Man


Empty the Sun vs. Golden Days

Less Than Zero vs. City of Night

White Oleander vs. Lithium for Medea

Ask the Dust vs. Post Office


The Monkey's Raincoat vs. Devil in a Blue Dress

True Confessions vs. L.A. Confidential

The Black Echo vs. The Big Sleep

Double Indemnity vs. Inherent Vice

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