Edward Bunker

Edward Bunker

Edward Bunker (1933-2005) spent many years in prison before he found success as a novelist. Born in Los Angeles, he accumulated enough terms in juvenile hall that he was finally jailed, becoming at seventeen the youngest ever inmate at San Quentin prison. He began writing during that period, inspired by his proximity to the famous death row inmate and author Caryl Chessman. Incarcerated off and on throughout the next two decades, he was still in jail when his first book, No Beast So Fierce, was published in 1973.

Paroled eighteen months later, Bunker gave up crime permanently, and spent the rest of his life writing novels, many of which drew on his experiences in prison. Also an actor, his best known role was as Mr. Blue, one of the bank robbers in Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs. He died in 2005.

“Edward Bunker is a true original of American letters. His books are criminal classics: novels about criminals, written by an ex-criminal, from the unregenerately criminal viewpoint.” — James Ellroy

“At 40 Eddie Bunker was a hardened criminal with a substantial prison record. Twenty-five years later, he was hailed by his peers as America's greatest living crimewriter.” — The Independent 

“I don’t know if any politicians read Bunker. But they should.”  — The Guardian

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