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"Aren't our lives strange?"

- Gail Hendee to Pete Bondurant, 1958

Gail Hendee Edit

Gail Hendee is a character who appears in American Tabloid, the first book in James Ellroy's Underworld U.S.A. Trilogy. She is introduced as the girlfriend and partner-in-crime of Pete Bondurant, and portrayed as a woman who suffers a great deal emotionally because of their hectic and dangerous life.

Early life Edit

Not much is known or mentioned about Gail's early life. During a conversation with Pete, Howard Hughes mentions that Gail has written articles in the Hush-Hush scandal-rag under a variety of pseudonyms. By the late-1950's, Gail had been living together with Pete in the 'surveillance house', owned by Hughes. Pete and Gail work 'divorce gigs' together - shakedowns of married men who are prone to infidelity. It is mentioned that Gail suffers emotionally because of her part in these extortion schemes, and that "apart from the money, she hated it".

American Tabloid (1958-1963) Edit

Part I: Shakedowns (November-December 1958) Edit

Appearance Edit

Gail is described an attractive woman with great curves and long, brown hair; it is mentioned that even after some time with Gail, "her looks still got to" Pete.