Black Dahlia & White Rose
By Joyce Carol Oates
(Ecco Press, Paperback, 9780062195708, 274pp.)
Publication Date: April 2014
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Unafraid to venture into no-man's-lands both real and surreal, Oates takes readers deep into dangerous territory in eleven stories that showcase the keen rewards of her relentless brio and invention. Whether charting the inner lives of two beautiful and mysteriously doomed women in 1940s Los Angeles--Elizabeth Short, otherwise known as the Black Dahlia, and her roommate, Norma Jeane Baker, soon to become Marilyn Monroe--the psychological compulsion of a well-to-do businessman's wife who is ravished by, and elopes with, a lover who is not what he seems, or the uneasily duplicitous relationships between young women and their parents, Black Dahlia & White Rose explores the menace that lurks at the edges of and intrudes upon even the seemingly safest of lives--and maps with rare emotional acuity the transformational cost of such intrusions.