Brown's Requiem Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Brown's Requiem

Fritz Brown, a burned-out ex-LA cop, makes ends meet by doing car repo's. His "private detective agency" is little more than a tax shelter. When a fat and obnoxious golf caddy who carries a surprising amount of cash hires Brown to investigate his beautiful cello-playing sister's relationship with a wealthy Jewish furrier (an apparent sugar daddy), Brown gradually finds himself mucking through family secrets, Mexican pornography, police corruption, and an 11-year-old arson case that was supposedly solved by a respected senior police officer. This is an admirable debut novel by a writer destined for future greatness. The dialogue is a little too clean and clear, but piquant details include the hero's love of classical German composers, an appreciation of LA golf courses, a good solid look at life in Tijuana and Ensenada, and passing references to Philip Marlowe and Ellroy's ongoing obsession, the Black Dahlia.
Click here to see the rest of this review

The review of this Book prepared by David Loftus

BROWN'S REQUIEM is the first novel, published in 1981, of the american writer James Ellroy.

Fritz Brown is a private detective. Until now, his life has been a mess : excluded from the Los Angeles Police Department, a former drug and alcohol addict, he works in his spare time for Cal Myers, a car seller, and tries to bring back to his boss cars that haven't been completely paid.

One day, a fat golf caddy pays him to spy on his sister and her old mentor Sol Kupferman. Then begins for Fritz Brown a redemptive trip that will lead him to Mexico and deep into a corrupted Los Angeles.

The review of this Book prepared by Daniel Staebler

Chapter Analysis of Brown's Requiem

Click on a plot link to find similar books!

Plot & Themes

Tone of story    -   Dry-cynical How difficult to spot villain?    -   Somewhat obvious Time/era of story:    -   1980's-1999    -   1960's-1970's Spying/Terrorism Thriller    -   Yes What % of story relates directly to the mystery, not the subplot?    -   60% Special suspect?    -   chronically deranged person Murder of certain profession?    -   criminals Misc. Murder Plotlets    -   "All in the family" murder Kind of investigator    -   hard boiled/private eye Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Any non-mystery subplot?    -   searching for $$$/treasure Crime Thriller    -   Yes Crime plotlets:    -   escape/rescue from kidnappers Murder Mystery (killer unknown)    -   Yes General Crime (including known murderer)    -   Yes Who's the criminal enemy here?    -   drug dealers    -   finding a known killer

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   private investigator Age:    -   20's-30's


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   California The Americas (not US):    -   Yes The Americas:    -   Mexico Desert?    -   Yes Misc setting    -   resort/hotel    -   fancy mansion

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   very gorey references to deaths/dead bodies and torture Explicit sex in book?    -   Yes What kind of sex:    -   actual description of sex    -   descript. of breasts    -   descript. of other female areas Unusual forms of death    -   perforation--bullets    -   perforation--swords/knives Unusual form of death?    -   Yes Amount of dialog    -   significantly more descript than dialog

Books with storylines, themes & endings like Brown's Requiem

James Ellroy Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
2 Ways to Search!

Our Chief Librarian