The L.A. Daily Mirror Holiday Gift Guide

Spencer Tracy, Cover

Here are some recommendations for things that might please a Daily Mirror reader. The out of print books can usually be found on

    • “Spencer Tracy: A Biography,” by Daily Mirror contributor James Curtis.
    • “Hollywoodland,” by Daily Mirror contributor Mary Mallory.
  • And remember, one of the best gifts, an annual subscription to the L.A. Daily Mirror, is free. The best bargain in town is a card for the Los Angeles Public Library. Also free.
  • “Nuestro Pueblo,” drawings by Charles Owens with text by Joseph Seewerker. This is one of my favorite books about Los Angeles. If you haven’t seen it, you should really get a copy. Long out of print, it’s available on Bookfinder.
  • “The Los Angeles Book,” by Lee Shippey and Max Yavno. Great photos of the city, accompanied by text that can be ignored. Available on Bookfinder.
  • “Los Angeles: A Guide to the City and Its Environs.” The WPA guide to Los Angeles is a snapshot of the city before World War II. There are vintage copies on Bookfinder, and it’s possible to find reprints in some bookstores and on Amazon.
  • “Selected Letters of Raymond Chandler,” by Frank McShane. This is great reading, like chatting with Chandler. Available on Bookfinder.
  • “The Notebooks of Raymond Chandler,” by Frank McShane. A short but entertaining book that reveals the nuts and bolts of mystery writing. Available on Bookfinder.
  • “Dancing Bear: An Inside Look at California Politics,” by Gladwin Hill. One of the best books about California politics I have ever read, with great insight on Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan. Available on Bookfinder.
  • “They Call Them Camisoles,” by Wilma Wilson. This is a harrowing book about a former actress’ time in Camarillo. The original is incredibly rare and expensive. The book has been reissued as “They Call Them Camisoles – Revisited”  by Wilma Wilson and Kirsten Anderberg and is on Amazon for $25.99.
  • “Headline Happy,” by Florabel Muir. Her description of the dead Bugsy Siegel is worth the price of the entire book. Available on Bookfinder.
  • “The Dark Side of Fortune,” by Margaret Leslie Davis. A well-researched biography of Edward L. Doheny. Available on Bookfinder.

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in Art & Artists, Books and Authors, Eve Golden, James Curtis, Marion Eisenmann, Mary Mallory and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to The L.A. Daily Mirror Holiday Gift Guide

  1. Eve says:

    Aren’t you sweet–and I haven’t even started begging for plugs yet!


  2. Mary Mallory says:

    I agree wholeheartedly – run and join the Los Angeles Public Library, or your local library as fast as you can. Here in LA, with your member card, you can search The Los Angeles Times for free on Proquest, either downtown or at home, through the link on the Central Library site and with your card ID number. Downtown’s history section has great reference materials, as does the Pasadena and Glendale Central Libraries.

    The WPA guide has been republished this year and is available for sale at larger bookstores.


  3. love that cover photo on the Tracy book.


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