Excerpt from The Cold Six Thousand by James Ellroy, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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The Cold Six Thousand

by James Ellroy

The Cold Six Thousand
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  • First Published:
    May 2001, 688 pages
    Jun 2002, 688 pages

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Moore stared. Moore trembled. Moore shook.

Wayne said, "Wendell Durf"

Moore shoved him. Moore ran outside.

The council booked him a biggg suite. A bellboy supplied history. JFK loved the suite. JFK fucked women there. Ava Gardner blew him on the terrace.

Two sitting rooms. Two bedrooms. Three TVs. Slush funds. Six cold. Kill that nigger, boy.

Wayne toured the suite. History lives. JFK loved Dallas quail.

He turned the TVs on. He tuned in three channels. He caught the show three ways. He walked between sets. He nailed the story.

The punk was Lee Harvey Oswald. The punk shot JFK and Tippit. Tippit worked Dallas PD. DPD was tight-knit. Moore probably knew him.

Oswald was pro-Red. Oswald loved Fidel. Oswald worked at a schoolbook plant. Oswald clipped the Prez on his lunch break.

DPD had him. Their HQ teemed. Cops. Reporters. Camera hogs all.

Wayne flopped on a couch. Wayne shut his eyes. Wayne saw Wendell Durfee. Wayne opened his eyes. Wayne saw Lee Oswald.

He killed the sound. He pulled his wallet pix.

There's his mother-back in Peru, Indiana.

She left Wayne Senior. Late '47. Wayne Senior hit her. He broke bones sometimes.

She asked Wayne who he loved most. He said, "My dad." She slapped him. She cried. She apologized.

The slap tore it. He went with Wayne Senior.

He called his mother--May '54--he called en route to the Army. She said, "Don't fight in silly wars." She said, "Don't hate like Wayne Senior."

He cut her off. Binding permanent 4-ever.

There's his stepmom:

Wayne Senior ditched Wayne's mom. Wayne Senior wooed Janice. Wayne Senior brought Wayne along. Wayne was thirteen. Wayne was horny. Wayne dug on Janice.

Janice Lukens Tedrow made rooms tilt. She played indolent wife. She played scratch golf. She played A-club tennis.

Wayne Senior feared her spark. She watched Wayne grow up. She torched reciprocal. She left her doors open. She invited looks. Wayne Senior knew it. Wayne Senior didn't care.

There's his wife:

Lynette Sproul Tedrow. Perched in his lap. Grad night at Brigham Young.

He's shell-shocked. He got his chem degree--BYU'59--summa cum laude. He craved action. He joined Vegas PD. Fuck summa cum laude.

He met Lynette in Little Rock. Fall '57. Central High desegregates. Rednecks. Colored kids. The Eighty-Second Airborne.

Some white boys prowl. Some white boys snatch a colored boy's sandwich. Lynette hands him hers. The white boys attack. Corporal Wayne Tedrow Jr. counters.

He beats them down. He spears one fuck. The fuck screams, "Mommy!"

Lynette hits on Wayne. She's seventeen. He's twenty-three. He's got some college.

They fucked on a golf course. Sprinklers doused them. He told Janice all.

She said, "You and Lynette peaked early. And you probably liked the fight as much as the sex."

Janice knew him. Janice had the home-court advantage.

Wayne looked out a window. TV crews roamed. News vans double-parked. He walked through the suite. He turned off the TVs. Three Oswalds vanished.

He pulled his file. All carbons: LVPD Dallas County Sheriff's.

Durfee, Wendell (NMI). Male Negro DOB 6-6-27 Clark County, Nevada.

Pander beefs-344 up. "Well-known dice-game habitue." No busts outside Vegas and Dallas.

"Known to drive Cadillacs."

"Known to wear flamboyant attire."

"Known to have fathered 13 children out of wedlock."

"Known to pander Negro women, white women, male homosexuals & Mexican transvestites."

Twenty-two pimp busts. Fourteen convictions. Nine child-support liens. Five bail jumps.

Cop notes: Wendell's smart Wendell's dumb Wendell cut that cat at Binion's.

Excerpted from The Cold Six Thousand by James Ellroy. Copyright 2001 by James Ellroy. Excerpted by permission of Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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