Don’t know how I ever managed to get her . . .
Over at the Los Angeles Times, Richard Rayner reviews The Long Embrace – Raymond Chandler and the Woman He Loved by Judith Freeman. The book focusses on Raymond Chandler and his obsession with another man’s wife.
Freeman traces the ups and downs of the marriage and career with utmost delicacy. We spend time with Billy Wilder and John Houseman, although “The Long Embrace” offers much more than a mere retelling. Spurred by Chandler’s restlessness, Freeman writes about L.A. with a tender precision and yearning that borders on the religious. “I headed out Sunset Boulevard, past Hollywood High School and the cheap divey hotels with the leggy hookers out front, past the Chateau Marmont, where Belushi died of an overdose and the gargantuan billboards loom over the strip, the Marlboro man and his horse like gods high in the sky,” she notes, describing a drive oceanward. “The farther you travel the more the air begins to change and become infused with a marine freshness. A mist develops. A faint fog appears, shot through with sunshine. A hazy light that says you’re almost to the beach. You smell the coast long before you see it. You sense you’re coming to the end of the land.”