Los Angeles, 1950.
The city of angels is now the city of the angel of death.
Three detectives with three different angles will be drawn together into a circle of lies and murder. Danny Upshaw is an LA sheriffs detective with a group of bodies that will lead him to find out more about himself than he bargained for. LAPD lieutenant Malcolm "Mal" Considine is locked in a bitter custody battle for his son, whilst being drawn into the corrupt district attorneys plan to route out communists in Hollywood. Turner "Buzz" Meeks, a disgraced former cop, is now working for millionaire Howard Hughes and gangster Mickey Cohen. Buzz may try to right a few his wrongs along the way.
All three men will come together with front row seats to a nightmare...
1988 novel by James Ellroy and the second part of his "L.A. Quartet."
- Anyone Can Die: By the end of the book both Mal and Danny are dead.
- Ambition Is Evil: The District Attorney is starting another hunt into communists hidden in Hollywood. He doesn't care if the rumors are true and he is only using the investigation as a means to further his career.
- Mal joins the investigation into communism. [[spoiler:
- Artistic License History: Another murder that was never solved in real life is given a resolution.
- Body Horror: The Murders in the book are carried out with extreme vengeance and torture.
- Broken Pedestal: Claire Katherine De Haven is a figure on the Hollywood social circuit and is a communist sympathizer in order to help people in need. she also enabled a known rapist and murderer get away with his crimes.
- Cowboy Cop: Danny Upshaw and Mal both bend the law when they try to do the right thing.
- Dirty Cop: Both the LAPD and the LA county sheriffs department are filled with them.
- Buzz was sacked from the LAPD for this reason.
- Driven to Suicide: Danny Upshaw in a bid to avert anyone finding out about his homosexuality
- Gayngst: Danny Upshaw
- Meaningful Background Event:
- Police Brutality: Danny actively beats up men in a bid to find the killer.
- Politically Correct History: Averted massively.
- Sliding Scale of Law Enforcement: Danny and Mal are trying to do the right thing. Other cops may vary...
- The Reveal: Reynolds was the father of the murderer Coleman, he then formed a sexual relationship with him and drove him mad.
- Turn in Your Badge: Danny Upshaw