AMERICAN TABLOID, the first part of the Underworld U.S.A. trilogy has been published in 1995.
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Ellroy alternates three different points of view describing the 1958-1962 period. There's Kemper Boyd's, a FBI agent sent by Edgar G. Hoover into the Kennedy's family circle in order to get informations about the intentions of John and Robert Kennedy. Kemper Boyd becomes a fervent admirer of the new President and has some difficulties to reconcile his task for the Minister of Justice Robert Kennedy, his ties with the bosses of the american mafia and his C.I.A. engagement among the anticastrist groups.
There's also the point of view of Pete Bondurant, a canadian hitman who's sharing the esteem of Jimmy Hoffa and the main figures of the mob. He's hired by Kemper Boyd to train the men who will be the heroes of the Bay of Pigs' affair. He'll convince the mob to finance this operation for the C.I.A. in order to get back the Havana casinos.
Finally, there is Ward Littell, a close friend of Kemper Boyd who desperately hopes to rejoin the Kennedy clan he's always admired. He'll steal the hidden accounting books of the mafia but is broken by Edgar G. Hoover who describes him as an alcoholic to Robert Kennedy. Dreaming of revenge, he'll become then the lawyer of the main figures of the american mob.
The review of this Book prepared by Daniel Staebler