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Perfidia

Narrated by: Jeff Harding
Length: 26 hrs and 26 mins
4 out of 5 stars (13 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

It is December 6, 1941. America stands at the brink of World War II. Last hopes for peace are shattered when Japanese squadrons bomb Pearl Harbor. Los Angeles has been a haven for loyal Japanese-Americans - but now war fever grips the city, and the Japanese internment begins. The hellish murder of a Japanese family summons three men and one woman.

William H. Parker is a captain on the Los Angeles Police. He’s superbly gifted but consumed by dubious ideology. He is bitterly at odds with Sergeant Dudley Smith – ex-IRA killer, fledgling war profiteer.

Kay Lake is a 21-year-old dilettante looking for adventure. Hideo Ashida is a police chemist and the only Japanese on the payroll. The investigation throws them together and rips them apart.

©2014 James Ellroy (P)2015 Isis Publishing Ltd

What members say

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

fever dream

Another immersion in the dark, conspiratorial imagination of Ellroy. Dudley Smith is one of the most evil and mesmerising characters in lliterature.

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Profile Image for Julian Summer
  • Julian Summer
  • 27-06-2015

Weird book, excellent reader

Like many of Ellroys books the prose style is strange and takes a lot of time getting used to. There is little in the way of normal descriptive narrative, so the reader has to glean what he can from disjointed conversations and peculiar, almost surreal data dumps. Sometimes these are diary extracts, sometimes news broadcast and sometimes newspaper extracts. All that having been said, I really enjoyed this ( slightly overlong ) book. The setting in the anti-Jap hysteria of post Pearl Harbour Los Angeles is fascinating and the corruption of police and local officials truly horrifying. The plot is extremely convoluted and, together with the Ellroy style means that a listener really has to concentrate,. However, the reader (Jeff Harding) is amazing, using many different voices and accents. Truly brilliant, especially the women. Bottom line, I strongly recommend this book.

12 of 14 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for PropheticTM ☆☆☆☆☆
  • PropheticTM ☆☆☆☆☆
  • 04-08-2018

Typical Vintage Ellroy

Perfidia is a beast of a crime fiction novel which is much more satisfying as an Audiobook, I promise! Jeff Harding does a smashing job with the narration, 1940s L.A. street slang comes alive.

A Japanese family murder in L.A. with a backdrop of Pearl Harbour is the setting that Ellroy uses to showcase historical figures, Hollywood stars and other characters from previous Ellroy series in a vast and rewarding tale.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Andrew  Pratley
  • Andrew Pratley
  • 08-08-2019

First rate historical thriller

I gave this book top billing because if your a fan of James Ellroy you should love it. If your not or haven't read any of his books then I wouldn't start with this one. For a start it is long. It has 120 chapters & is written in a a very singular style that you will either love or hate. I listened to it as well whilst reading it. Jeff Harding who does the narration does a wonderful job.

The novel is as much a work of historical fiction as it is a thriller. I always enjoy thrillers that have good sense of time & place. It is full of wonderful characters some of who are wholly fictional whilst others are based on real people who actually lived at the time. The time period is a number of days prior & post the attack of Pearl Harbor in 1941. The setting is Los Angeles. This is not a city of angels. It is quite the reverse. One of the central characters Dudley Smith is a truly horrible individual.He is not strictly a villain. He is instead a truly three dimensional character who is mostly villainous. It is a brutal book, at times, but Ellroy never lingers since is not his style. The violence is not in my opinion gratuitous but it is not for those of a sensitive nature.

I found it an immersive experience & was sad when it came to an end. Always a good sign.

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Profile Image for Mrs. S. M. Mezulis
  • Mrs. S. M. Mezulis
  • 29-07-2018

1940s corruption and violence<br />

if this is your thing and you understand 1940s American slang then maybe you'll like this book but I struggled to finish it. I didn't like the way it was narrated in short, sharp, repetitive bursts throughout. I wouldn't listen to any more by this author.

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Profile Image for Jpluton
  • Jpluton
  • 11-07-2018

puzzled

I have tried to get into this book several times but cannot make head nor tail as to what is going on. Very disappointing.

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Profile Image for Melanie D
  • Melanie D
  • 14-06-2019

Dismal narration makes the book unfinishable

I'm a huge James Ellroy fan, but do I ever wish I'd checked who the narrator was. It's the same guy who ruined The Midnight Line by Lee Child. His narration follows the same style in every book, and I guess you either like it or you don't, but for this one it reached the point where I couldn't bear to torture myself any further.

I've read enough James Ellroy, and suffered through enough of this audiobook, to know the underlying book is fine, and that if you're a fan of his other works it'll be worth reading. What's not worth it is putting up with hours of Jeff Harding murdering the text. My first 1 star review for an audiobook, which means this is truly, exceptionally awful.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful