A slice of 20 LA noirs, for reading and watching
Denise Hamilton -- writer, former reporter and editor of the new anthology "Los Angeles Noir 2: The Classics" -- has shared some of her noir knowledge with The Times' LA magazine. There she's come up with a list of 20 Noir Essentials focused on Los Angeles.
Going chronologically, her list begins in 1932 with "Fast One" by Paul Cain -- no relation to the better-known James M. Cain -- and ends with 2009''s "LA Noir: The Struggle for the Soul of America’s Most Seductive City" by John M. Buntin.
Interestingly, Hamilton's noir list includes books, stories and films. I guess in Los Angeles, the movie of a book casts a long shadow. I've only read (or seen) seven:
"The Long Goodbye" by Raymond Chandler
"The Postman Always Rings Twice" by James M. Cain
"Devil in a Blue Dress" by Walter Mosley
"Blade Runner" (film)
"L.A. Confidential" by James Ellroy
"L.A. Noir: The Struggle for the Soul of America’s Most Seductive City" by John Buntin
I'd consider all of these classics, too. But since I'm missing 13, that means I'm a little behind on my noir consumption. Reading "Los Angeles Noir 2" might help -- but in the meantime, what are your classic L.A. noir suggestions?
-- Carolyn Kellogg