James Ellroy is the author of the groundbreaking Underworld USA Trilogy of novels—American TabloidThe Cold Six Thousand, and Blood’s a Rover. His L.A. Quartet novels—The Black DahliaThe Big NowhereL.A. Confidential, and White Jazz—were international bestsellers. My Dark Places, his memoir, was a Time Best Book of the Year and a New York Times Notable Book in 1996. His novel The Cold Six Thousand was a New York Times Notable Book and a Los Angeles Times Best Book for 2001. Ellroy lives in Los Angeles. 


Freddy Otash Confesses

James Ellroy is an American original of the most profane order. The bestselling author of the noir classics L.A. Confidential, The Black Dahlia, and The Cold Six Thousand, he has been hailed by the Los Angeles Times as "one of the best writers of our era." In his latest short fiction, Shakedown, he is as frenetically depraved as ever, minting an antihero who is a cad for the ages. 

Meet Freddy Otash: corrupt cop turned sleaze hustler, extortionist, pimp, and an actual historical figure who made the 1950s magazine Confidential the go-to source for the sins of the rich and famous. In his prime, Freddy raised hell, and in the pages of Shakedown he finds himself in purgatory—literally—waiting for a transfer. Will he make it to heaven, or is his fate trending south? Promised redemption if he confesses, Freddy writes a tell-all peopled by Hollywood greats like Liz Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, John Wayne, and Gary Cooper (to name a few), who are up to all sorts of wrong. Threesomes, foursomes, men’s room misadventures—anything goes in this licentious world. 

Shakedown explodes the postwar America of June and Ward Cleaver and breathes randy new life into the man who whetted our national appetite for sex and scandal and whose lack of scruples makes today’s gossip culture seem almost innocent. What’s true and what’s fiction? Ellroy’s not telling. 

Praise for Shakedown:

"Need paint peeled? Skin flensed? Zombies repelled? Expose the problem to Ellroy’s scabrous, excoriating look behind the curtains of golden-era Los Angeles and presto—solved. … Most definitely not nice, though if you like your language salty enough to float on without ever hitting water, then this is just the thing."—Kirkus Reviews