by Charles Higham
University of Wisconsin Press, 2004
eISBN: 978-0-299-20363-4 | Cloth: 978-0-299-20360-3 | Paper: 978-0-299-20364-1
Library of Congress Classification HV6534.L7H54 2004
Dewey Decimal Classification 364.15230979494

    For more than eighty years, the famous unsolved murder of William Desmond Taylor, the legendary bisexual film director, has generated debate and controversy.  Now, best-selling author Charles Higham has solved the crime.  Higham uncovers the corruption and intrigue of Los Angeles in the Roaring Twenties—and the film industry moguls’ complete domination of the city’s authorities.
    When it was discovered that a famous star of the day had probably killed Taylor, a massive cover-up began—from the removal of crucial evidence to the naming of innocent people as killers—which has continued until now to protect the truth.  Murder in Hollywood goes beyond the killing to unearth unknown details about the life of Taylor before his arrival in Hollywood, as well as the stories and histories buried by the crooked authorities and criminals involved the case. The author’s exclusive interviews with the culpable star, his unique possession of long-vanished police records, and the support of the present-day Los Angeles county coroner—who examined the evidence as if the murder had taken place now—have ensured a hair-raising thriller.
    Charles Higham successfully presents the most plausible and convincing solution yet to the mystery.  In the process he paints a vivid portrait of Hollywood in the 1920s—from its major stars to its bisexual subculture. The result is a compelling answer to a long-standing mystery and a fascinating study of a place, and an industry that, as today, let people reinvent themselves. Murder in Hollywood is more extraordinary than any crime of fiction and more exciting than any action adventure movie.