Whoops -- I've been meaning to add: I now have an (almost) complete collection of the Philip Marlowe books by Raymond Chandler!
His setting is Los Angeles in the 30s, 40s and 50s.
Does anyone know if L.A. now is anything like what it was back then? *curious* Obviously the language, the fashions and the prices have changed quite a bit -- but he mentions Santa Rosa, San Diego, the incessant humid heat, the bays, the hydrangeas etc...
Of course, I don't expect anyone in L.A. nowadays to walk down the street in suits and shoulder-holsters, or to call detectives a "shamus" or a "private dick".
That'd be far too much of a coincidence!