Easy Rawlins returns to solve a mystery set amid the flames of the hottest summer L.A. has ever seen.
Just after devastating riots tear through Los Angeles in 1965 - when anger is high and fear still smolders everywhere - the police turn up at Easy Rawlins's doorstep. He expects the worst, as usual. But they've come to ask for his help.
A man was wrenched from his car by a mob at the riots' peak and escaped into a nearby apartment building. Soon afterward, a redheaded woman known as Little Scarlet was found dead in that building - and the fleeing man is the obvious suspect. But the man has vanished.
The police fear that their presence in certain neighborhoods could spark a new inferno, so they ask Easy Rawlins to see what he can discover. The vanished man is the key, but he is only the beginning. Easy enlists the help of his longtime friend Mouse to break through the shroud. And what Easy finds is a killer whose rage, like that which burned in the city for weeks, is intrinsically woven around deep-set passions -- feelings echoed within Easy himself.
THE MORNING AIR still smelled of smoke. Wood ash mainly but there was also the acrid stench of burnt plastic and paint. And even though I knew it couldnt be true, I thought I caught a whiff of putrid flesh from under the rubble across the street. The hardware store and Bernards Stationery Store were both completely gutted. The Gonzalez Market had been looted but only a part of its roof had been scorched. The corner building, however, Lucky Dime Liquors, had been burned to the ground. Manny Massman was down in the rubble with his two sons, kicking the metal fixtures. At one point the middle-aged store owner lowered his head and cried. His sons put their hands on his shoulders.
I understood how he felt. He had everything in that liquor store. His whole life. And now, after a five-day eruption of rage that had been simmering for centuries, he was penniless and destitute.
In his mind he hadnt done a thing wrong to anyone down in Watts. He had never ...
This is Mosley's eighth book in the Easy Rawlins series, and the setting is Los Angeles during the Watts riots of 1965. Mosley combines a highly involving mystery with a no holds barred commentary about race relations in the white- run America of the 1960s - a period of time that is still so recent that I'm not sure it could even be classified it as 'historical fiction'. This is a very powerful read and believed by many critics to be Mosley's strongest in the series.
If you liked Little Scarlet, try these:
San Francisco's Chinatown, 1940: Miranda Corbie, a private investigator, stumbles upon the fatally shot body of Eddie Takahashi. The Chamber of Commerce wants it covered up. The cops acquiesce. But Miranda wants justice - whatever it costs.
Riveting suspense in the tradition of Dennis Lehane and Michael Connelly, City of the Sun introduces retired detective Frank Behran imposing, charismatic former cop who agrees to take the case of a boy whos been missing for over a year.
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