Shop for City Rail Travel Guides metro icon


[?] Subscribe To This Site

follow us in feedly
Add to My Yahoo!
Add to My MSN
Subscribe with Bloglines


old steet car

LA's Green History


world map

Sister Cities


Top 10 Reasons to take the

Los Angeles Metro Rail



chinese facade

Top Ten Best Attractions in

Los Angeles





Books About Los Angeles


colorful books

Famous authors, novelists, essayists, memoirists and historians have always been fascinated, appalled, captivated, horrified, and otherwise overwhelmed by the City of Angels. Our L.A. Electric Travel books about Los Angeles highlight works of fiction, humor, history, social commentary and guide books that will help you move beyond the media cliches and dig into the essence of America's most elusive and future leaning city.





Southern California: An Island on the LandSouthern California: An island on the land by Carey McWilliams

One of the definitive books about Los Angeles and the growth of Southern California: One of the inspirations for the screenplay Chinatown.



four ecologiesLos Angeles: The Architecture of Four Ecologies by Reyner Banham

Written by an eccentric Brit who bicycled through Death Valley and fell in love with Los Angeles.




LA NoirL.A. Noir: The Struggle for the Soul of America's most Seductive City by John Buntin

Before Daryl Gates and MS-13 there was Chief William Parker and Bugsy Siegal, L.A. Noir portrays the history of cops vs. gangsters in one of our favorite true crime books about Los Angeles.


Land of a Thousand DancesLand of a Thousand Dances: Chicano Rock 'n' Roll from Southern California by David Reyes and Tom Waldman

Tells the story of Chicano rock pioneers from Richie Valens to Los Lobos.




City of NetsCity of Nets by Otto Friedrich

A social and cultural portrait of Hollywood in the 1940's.





Social Commentary


Tattoos on the HeartTattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion by Gregory Boyle. The founder of Homeboy Industries describes how compassion is at the center of his crusade to help former gang members.




Reluctant MetropolisThe Reluctant Metropolis by William Fulton. How LA became the nearly unmanageable sprawl it is today, and a few ideas on how to make the city more liveable.





The Other SideThe Other Side: Notes from the New L.A., Mexico City and Beyond by Ruben Martinez. The Emmy award-winning journalist explores the new Latino culture and its American epicenter in Los Angeles.





Los Angeles Novelists


LA ConfidentialJames Ellroy: The demon dog of American mystery authors probes the dark underbelly of LA in the 1940's and 1950's.





Lemon CakeAimee Bender: A quirky, award winning author whose work often detours into magical realism.







Lincoln LawyerMichael Connelly: A former crime reporter for the L.A. Times, Connelly is the alarmingly prolific author of over twenty mystery novels viewing life and death in Los Angeles through the eyes of cops, lawyers and reporters.




White OleanderJanet Fitch: Author of "White Oleander", one of the all time best selling books about Los Angeles, Janet Fitch writes about the dark edge of California dreaming and the high intensity emotions of life in L.A.




White AlbumJoan Didion -- A novelist and a journalist, Didion has been turning her incisive intelligence and rabid curiosity on California for decades.






Devil In a Blue DressWalter Mosley -- South LA in the post-war years is the setting for Mosley's mystery novels featuring Easy Rawlins.





The Long GoodbyeRaymond Chandler: His creation of the acerbic, world-weary yet noble private eye Philip Marlowe defined the LA detective novel, and spawned the most colorful tough guy talk ever written.





MildredJames M. Cain: Cain's trilogy of Southern California novels -- "The Postman Always Rings Twice". "Double Indemnity" and "Mildred Pierce" have never been surpassed for their laconic, hard-bitten realism.





SouthlandNina Revoyr: Japanese-Polish-American author Revoyr writes about our city's hidden heritage, often exploring the early years of the Japanese community in L.A.





BakedMark Haskell Smith: Mayhem, bad behavior, greed, marijuana competitions and the most outrageous characters who ever crawled out of an L.A. bungalow are the hallmarks of Smith's black comedy books about Los Angeles.



Day of the LocustNathanael West: West's Hollywood novel "The Day of the Locust" is a classic, a savagely lowbrow tale set among the backlot hangers-on and battered dreamers who hope to make it big in the movies.




ask duskJohn Fante -- The ultimate hard luck LA author, Fante spun tales of strivers and strugglers in southern California, continuing to dictate his novels as he went blind.





Los Angeles Guide Books


L.A. BizarroL.A. Bizarro by Anthony Lovett and Matt Maranian. A humorous escapade through all that is obscure, absurd and perverse in L.A.





An Architectural Guide to Los AngelesAn Architectural Guidebook to Los Angeles by David Gebhard and Robert Winter. The bible of LA architecture; every significant building in every style imaginable is catalogued here in crisp, informative prose.




Counter IntelligenceCounter Intelligence by Jonathan Gold. L.A's Pulitzer Prize winning food writer follows his fearless palate to ethnic outposts, holes-in-the-wall and hidden kitchens across So Cal.




Secret StairsSecret Stairs: A Walking Guide to the Historic Staircases of Los Angeles by Charles Fleming. Novelist and entertainment reporter Fleming has written one of the most unexpected books about Los Angeles. This unique guide leads you to 200 outdoor staircases tucked away in LA's hills and dales; perfect for day hikes and a trip back to pre-automobile Los Angeles.


Return from Books About Los Angeles to Home





Guidebook to Los Angeles by Rail

la adventures

L.A. Adventures:

100 Fun Sights

15 Day Trips

3 Bicycle Tours

0 Gallons of Gas

(preview here)

Buy Paperback


Get E-book :

kindle logo


itunes book store




google play


kobo logo


Old Street car

LA Metro Rail Made Easy


movie camera

Watch LA Movies: iTunes



Wacko Cat

Debunking Myths of L.A.



Find Books About Los Angeles