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James Ellroy on His Mother's Murder

Ellroy was born in Los Angeles in 1948. After his mother was mysteriously strangled to death when he was ten, he grew up obsessed with crime. His life spun towards booze, drugs, theft, and jail. He eventually cleaned up his life and began writing. He has written several novels, many of which were international best-sellers, including "American Tabloid," "The Black Dahlia," and his most recent book, "My Dark Places," in which he tells the story of his mother's murder.

21:44

Other segments from the episode on December 2, 1996

Fresh Air with Terry Gross, December 3, 1996: Interview with James Ellroy; Interview with Ellery Eskelin.

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