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“Packed with Hollywood personalities, Beltway types and felons, Buntin’s riveting tale of two ambitious souls on hell-bent opposing missions in the land of sun and make-believe is an entertaining and surprising diversion.”

Publishers Weekly

“A roller coaster ride....Gripping social history and a feast for aficionados of cops-and-robbers stories, both real and imagined.”

Kirkus Reviews






"Important and wonderfully enjoyable . . . a highly original and altogether splendid history that can be read for sheer pleasure and belongs on the shelf of indispensable books about America's most debated and least understood cities."

Tim Rutten, Los Angeles Times

"Buntin... has unearthed in the history of 20th-century L.A. a pervasive criminality that is far more appalling than anything to be found even in the most brutal novels of James Ellroy... An entertaining tale..."

Jonathan Yardley, Washington Post

“In his breathtaking dual biography of mobster Mickey Cohen and police chief William Parker, John Buntin confronts America’s most enigmatic city... in a tour de force of non-fiction narrative.”

Kevin Starr, California state librarian emeritus and University Professor and Professor of History, University of Southern California

“John Buntin's nonfiction cops and robbers narrative about Mid 20th century Los Angeles is not only compelling reading, but a heretofore unexplored look into the LAPD and the city it tried "To Protect and Serve" during one of the most colorful and tumultuous eras in the always provocative history of the City of Angels (and badmen). Dragnet, One Adam Twelve, Police Story, LA Confidential all rolled into one captivating book. Buntin nails it in this great read.”

LAPD Chief William Bratton

“LA Noir is a fascinating look at the likes of Mickey Cohen and Bill Parker, the two kingpins of Los Angeles crime and police lore. John Buntin's work here is detailed and intuitive. Most of all, it's flat out entertaining.”

Michael Connelly, creator of LAPD detective Hieronymous Bosch and the author most recently of The Scarecrow




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© 2009. John Buntin