It’s  always a special pleasure to read books set in Los Angeles and realize, time and time and again, how lucky we are to live in this mythical and storied city. The 1960’s and 70’s LA in particular has a special aura about it, an atmosphere that Eve Babitz, whose work was recently reissued by New York Review Books Classics, captured so well. The tomes in question are “Eve’s Hollywood”, first published in 1974 is a fictional memoir, and the essay collection “Slow Days, Fast Company: The World, the Flesh, and L.A.,” which originally saw light in 1977.  Both books draw on Babitz’s  glittering  coming of age in the post-war Los Angeles: born in 1943 to a musician father and an artist mother and with a Igor Stravinsky as a godfather, Eve was the muse that inspired Jim Morrison to write LA Woman , a romantic interest of Ed Ruscha and a belle de jour that gained notoriety when photographed while playing chess with Marcel Duchamp au naturel at Duchamp’s retrospective at the Pasadena Museum of Art in 1963. Babitz’s prose is brilliant and cool –  get a taste of it over at the Curbed LA’s amazing “Eve Babitz’s guide to Los Angeles” , which they describe as a “tour of the writer’s sexy, smoggy city of the 1960s and ’70s”.


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