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Judith Freeman

Old World Meets New Age in Thriller Nowhere-Land

A.W. Hill’s thriller, Nowhere-Land, featuring the L.A. private investigator and spiritual shaman, Stephan Raszer, may be the first truly 21st-century mystery I’ve read. It feels new, radical in the way that the movie Blade Runner felt new. Just as Blade Runner offered a vision of a future in which technology......

The Big Sleep: Raymond Chandler, 50 Years Dead

Raymond Chandler died 50 years ago this week. On March 26, 1959, at 3:50 in the afternoon, he took his last breath in the Scripps Clinic in La Jolla, having drunk himself to death, though the official cause of his demise was listed as pneumonia. He was 71 years old,......
Nina Revoyr; Credit: Leslie Barton

The Age of Dreaming

One of the many pleasures of Nina Revoyr’s quietly powerful new novel, The Age of Dreaming, is the portrayal of its central character, an aging Japanese silent-film star named Jun Nakayama. The novel is set in 1964, and Jun is living in a small apartment in West Hollywood, forgotten and......
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Goodbye, Dutton's!

Judith Freeman When I think of the many readings I’ve attended and given at Dutton’s, one always stands out: a Sunday afternoon, many years ago, a program of readings by homeless writers, with a smattering of L.A. literary celebs. We were each to read for 10 minutes, no more (in......

Lists

JUDITH FREEMAN (author of Red Waterand other novels) Mary Gaitskill’sVeronica (Pantheon) is a harrowing, moving novel about a once-beautiful ex-model and her friendship with an older woman dying of AIDS. Youth and beauty, death and disease, friendship and its sometimes strange pairings. Gaitskill is brilliant at many things. Edgy, disturbing,......
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A Passion for Cashin

I had never heard of designer Bonnie Cashin until I read an article about her three years ago in the New York Times Magazine, written by Stephanie Day Iverson, who was doing her thesis on Cashin. Cashin had just died, at the age of 91, and Iverson, who had become......
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L. A. Flaw

Photo by Debra DiPaolo L.A. HAS BEEN CALLED MANY THINGS BY MANY PEOPLE -- BIG, messy, centerless, the ugliest city on Earth, the biggest hick town in all the hick land. That it is a bleached-out, sprawling whore of a metropolis, where a single street can stretch for over 70......