The popular sale Little Sister outlet online sale

The popular sale Little Sister outlet online sale

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Description

Product Description

Crime fiction master Raymond Chandler''s fifth novel featuring Philip Marlowe, the "quintessential urban private eye" (Los Angeles Times). 

In noir master Raymond Chandler''s The Little Sister, a movie starlet with a gangster boyfriend and a pair of siblings with a shared secret lure private eye Philip Marlowe into the less than glamorous and more than a little dangerous world of Hollywood fame. Chandler''s first foray into the industry that dominates the company town that is Los Angeles.

From Library Journal

Chandler is not only the best writer of hardboiled PI stories, he''s one of the 20th century''s top scribes, period. His full canon of novels and short stories is reprinted in trade paper featuring uniform covers in Black Lizard''s signature style. A handsome set for a reasonable price.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

"Raymond Chandler is a master." -- The New York Times

“[Chandler] wrote as if pain hurt and life mattered.” -- The New Yorker

“Chandler seems to have created the culminating American hero: wised up, hopeful, thoughtful, adventurous, sentimental, cynical and rebellious.” --Robert B. Parker, The New York Times Book Review

“Philip Marlowe remains the quintessential urban private eye.” -- Los Angeles Times

“Nobody can write like Chandler on his home turf, not even Faulkner. . . . An original. . . . A great artist.” — The Boston Book Review

“Raymond Chandler was one of the finest prose writers of the twentieth century. . . . Age does not wither Chandler’s prose. . . . He wrote like an angel.” -- Literary Review

“[T]he prose rises to heights of unselfconscious eloquence, and we realize with a jolt of excitement that we are in the presence of not a mere action tale teller, but a stylist, a writer with a vision.” --Joyce Carol Oates, The New York Review of Books

“Chandler wrote like a slumming angel and invested the sun-blinded streets of Los Angeles with a romantic presence.” —Ross Macdonald

“Raymond Chandler is a star of the first magnitude.” --Erle Stanley Gardner

“Raymond Chandler invented a new way of talking about America, and America has never looked the same to us since.” --Paul Auster

“[Chandler]’s the perfect novelist for our times. He takes us into a different world, a world that’s like ours, but isn’t. ” --Carolyn See

From the Inside Flap

A movie starlet with a gangster boyfriend and a pair of siblings with a shared secret lure Marlowe into the less than glamorous and more than a little dangerous world of Hollywood fame. Chandler''s first foray into the industry that dominates the company town that is Los Angeles.

From the Back Cover

Raymond Chandler''s fifth novel has Philip Marlowe going to Hollywood as he explores the underworld of the glitter capital, trying to find a sweet young thing''s missing brother. Along the way he uncovers a little blackmail, a lot of drugs, and more than enough murder.

About the Author

Raymond Thornton Chandler (1888 - 1959) was the master practitioner of American hard-boiled crime fiction. Although he was born in Chicago, Chandler spent most of his boyhood and youth in England where he attended Dulwich College and later worked as a freelance journalist for The Westminster Gazette and The Spectator. During World War I, Chandler served in France with the First Division of the Canadian Expeditionary Force, transferring later to the Royal Flying Corps (R. A. F.). In 1919 he returned to the United States, settling in California, where he eventually became director of a number of independent oil companies. The Depression put an end to his career, and in 1933, at the age of forty-five, he turned to writing fiction, publishing his first stories in Black Mask. Chandler’s detective stories often starred the brash but honorable Philip Marlowe (introduced in 1939 in his first novel, The Big Sleep) and were noted for their literate presentation and dead-on critical eye. Never a prolific writer, Chandler published only one collection of stories and seven novels in his lifetime. Some of Chandler’s novels, like The Big Sleep, were made into classic movies which helped define the film noir style. In the last year of his life he was elected president of the Mystery Writers of America. He died in La Jolla, California on March 26, 1959.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

ONE

The pebbled glass door panel is lettered in flaked black paint: "Philip Marlowe . . . Investigations." It is a reasonably shabby door at the end of a reasonably shabby corridor in the sort of building that was new about the year the all-tile bathroom became the basis of civilization. The door is locked, but next to it is another door with the same legend which is not locked. Come on in--there''s nobody in here but me and a big bluebottle fly. But not if you''re from Manhattan, Kansas.

* * *

It was one of those clear, bright summer mornings we get in the early spring in California before the high fog sets in. The rains are over. The hills are still green and in the valley across the Hollywood hills you can see snow on the high mountains. The fur stores are advertising their annual sales. The call houses that specialize in sixteen-year-old virgins are doing a land-office business. And in Beverly Hills the jacaranda trees are beginning to bloom.

I had been stalking the bluebottle fly for five minutes, waiting for him to sit down. He didn''t want to sit down. He just wanted to do wing-overs and sing the prologue to Pagliacci. I had the fly swatter poised in midair and I was all set. There was a patch of bright sunlight on the corner of the desk and I knew that sooner or later that was where he was going to light. But when he did, I didn''t even see him at first. The buzzing stopped and there he was. And then the phone rang.

I reached for it inch by inch with a slow and patient left hand. I lifted the phone slowly and spoke into it softly: "Hold the line a moment, please."

I laid the phone down gently on the brown blotter. He was still there, shining and blue-green and full of sin. I took a deep breath and swung. What was left of him sailed halfway across the room and dropped to the carpet. I went over and picked him up by his good wing and dropped him into the wastebasket.

"Thanks for waiting," I said into the phone.

"Is this Mr. Marlowe, the detective?" It was a small, rather hurried, little-girlish voice. I said it was Mr. Marlowe, the detective. "How much do you charge for your services, Mr. Marlowe?"

"What was it you wanted done?"

The voice sharpened a little. "I can''t very well tell you that over the phone. It''s--it''s very confidential. Before I''d waste time coming to your office I''d have to have some idea--"

"Forty bucks a day and expenses. Unless it''s the kind of job that can be done for a flat fee."

"That''s far too much," the little voice said. "Why, it might cost hundreds of dollars and I only get a small salary and--"

"Where are you now?"

"Why, I''m in a drugstore. It''s right next to the building where your office is."

"You could have saved a nickel. The elevator''s free."

"I--I beg your pardon?"

I said it all over again. "Come on up and let''s have a look at you," I added. "If you''re in my kind of trouble, I can give you a pretty good idea--"

"I have to know something about you," the small voice said very firmly. "This is a very delicate matter, very personal. I couldn''t talk to just anybody."

"If it''s that delicate," I said, "maybe you need a lady detective."

"Goodness, I didn''t know there were any." Pause. "But I don''t think a lady detective would do at all. You see, Orrin was living in a very tough neighborhood, Mr. Marlowe. At least I thought it was tough. The manager of the rooming house is a most unpleasant person. He smelled of liquor. Do you drink, Mr. Marlowe?"

"Well, now that you mention it--"

"I don''t think I''d care to employ a detective that uses liquor in any form. I don''t even approve of tobacco."

"Would it be all right if I peeled an orange?"

I caught the sharp intake of breath at the far end of the line. "You might at least talk like a gentleman," she said.

"Better try the University Club," I told her. "I heard they had a couple left over there, but I''m not sure they''ll let you handle them." I hung up.

It was a step in the right direction, but it didn''t go far enough. I ought to have locked the door and hid under the desk.

TWO

Five minutes later the buzzer sounded on the outer door of the half-office I use for a reception room. I heard the door close again. Then I didn''t hear anything more. The door between me and there was half open. I listened and decided somebody had just looked in at the wrong office and left without entering. Then there was a small knocking on wood. Then the kind of cough you use for the same purpose. I got my feet off the desk, stood up and looked out. There she was. She didn''t have to open her mouth for me to know who she was. And nobody ever looked less like Lady Macbeth. She was a small, neat, rather prissy-looking girl with primly smooth brown hair and rimless glasses. She was wearing a brown tailor-made and from a strap over her shoulder hung one of those awkward-looking square bags that make you think of a Sister of Mercy taking first aid to the wounded. On the smooth brown hair was a hat that had been taken from its mother too young. She had no make-up, no lipstick and no jewelry. The rimless glasses gave her that librarian''s look.

"That''s no way to talk to people over the telephone," she said sharply. "You ought to be ashamed of yourself."

"I''m just too proud to show it," I said. "Come on in." I held the door for her. Then I held the chair for her.

She sat down on about two inches of the edge. "If I talked like that to one of Dr. Zugsmith''s patients," she said, "I''d lose my position. He''s most particular how I speak to the patients--even the difficult ones."

"How is the old boy? I haven''t seen him since that time I fell off the garage roof."

She looked surprised and quite serious. "Why surely you can''t know Dr. Zugsmith." The tip of a rather anemic tongue came out between her lips and searched furtively for nothing.

"I know a Dr. George Zugsmith," I said, "in Santa Rosa."

"Oh no. This is Dr. Alfred Zugsmith, in Manhattan. Manhattan, Kansas, you know, not Manhattan, New York."

"Must be a different Dr. Zugsmith," I said. "And your name?"

"I''m not sure I''d care to tell you."

"Just window shopping, huh?"

"I suppose you could call it that. If I have to tell my family affairs to a total stranger, I at least have the right to decide whether he''s the kind of person I could trust."

"Anybody ever tell you you''re a cute little trick?"

The eyes behind the rimless cheaters flashed. "I should hope not."

I reached for a pipe and started to fill it. "Hope isn''t exactly the word," I said. "Get rid of that hat and get yourself a pair of those slinky glasses with colored rims. You know, the ones that are all cockeyed and oriental--"

"Dr. Zugsmith wouldn''t permit anything like that," she said quickly. Then, "Do you really think so?" she asked and blushed ever so slightly.

I put a match to the pipe and puffed smoke across the desk. She winced back.

"If you hire me," I said, "I''m the guy you hire. Me. Just as I am. If you think you''re going to find any lay readers in this business, you''re crazy. I hung up on you, but you came up here all the same. So you need help. What''s your name and trouble?"

She just stared at me.

"Look" I said. "You come from Manhattan, Kansas. The last time I memorized the World Almanac that was a little town not far from Topeka. Population around twelve thousand. You work for Dr. Alfred Zugsmith and you''re looking for somebody named Orrin. Manhattan is a small town. It has to be. Only half a dozen places in Kansas are anything else. I already have enough information about you to find out your whole family history."

"But why should you want to. I''m fed up with people telling me histories. I''m just sitting here because I don''t have any place to go. I don''t want to work. I don''t want anything."

"You talk too much."

"Yes," I said, "I talk too much. Lonely men always talk too much. Either that or they don''t talk at all. Shall we get down to business? You don''t look like the type that goes to see private detectives, and especially private detectives you don''t know."

"I know that," she said quietly. "And Orrin would be absolutely livid. Mother would be furious too. I just picked your name out of the phone book--"

"What principle?" I asked. "And with the eyes closed or open?"

She stared at me for a moment as if I were some kind of freak. "Seven and thirteen," she said quietly.

"How?"

"Marlowe has seven letters," she said, "and Philip Marlowe has thirteen. Seven together with thirteen--"

"What''s your name?" I almost snarled.

"Orfamay Quest." She crinkled her eyes as if she could cry. She spelled the first name out for me, all one word. "I live with my mother," she went on, her voice getting rapid now as if my time is costing her. "My father died four years ago. He was a doctor. My brother Orrin was going to be a surgeon, too, but he changed into engineering after two years of medical. Then a year ago Orrin came out to work for the Cal-Western Aircraft Company in Bay City. He didn''t have to. He had a good job in Wichita. I guess he just sort of wanted to come out here to California. Most everybody does."

" Almost everybody," I said. "If you''re going to wear those rimless glasses, you might at least try to live up to them."

She giggled and drew a line along the desk with her fingertip, looking down. "Did you mean those slanting kind of glasses that make you look kind of oriental?"

"Uh-huh. Now about Orrin. We''ve got him to California, and we''ve got him to Bay City. What do we do with him?"

She thought a moment and frowned. Then she studied my face as if making up her mind. Then her words came with a burst: "It wasn''t like Orrin not to write to us regularly. He only wrote twice to mother and three times to me in the last six months. And the last letter was several months ago. Mother and I got worried. So it was my vacation and I came out to see him. He''d never been away from Kansas before." She stopped. "Aren''t you going to take any notes?" she asked.

I grunted.

"I thought detectives always wrote things down in little notebooks."

"I''ll make the gags," I said. "You tell the story. You came out on your vacation. Then what?"

"I''d written to Orrin that I was coming but I didn''t get any answer. Then I sent a wire to him about Salt Lake City but he didn''t answer that either. So all I could do was go down where he lived. It''s an awful long way. I went in a bus. It''s in Bay City. No. 449 Idaho Street."

She stopped again, then repeated the address, and I still didn''t write it down. I just sat there looking at her glasses and her smooth brown hair and the silly little hat and the fingernails with no color and her mouth with no lipstick and the tip of the little tongue that came and went between the pale lips.

"Maybe you don''t know Bay City, Mr. Marlowe."

"Ha," I said. "All I know about Bay City is that every time I go there I have to buy a new head. You want me to finish your story for you?"

"Wha-a-at?" Her eyes opened so wide that the glasses made them look like something you see in the deep-sea fish tanks.

"He''s moved," I said. "And you don''t know where he''s moved to. And you''re afraid he''s living a life of sin in a penthouse on top of the Regency Towers with something in a long mink coat and an interesting perfume."

"Well for goodness'' sakes!"

"Or am I being coarse?" I asked.

"Please, Mr. Marlowe," she said at last, "I don''t think anything of the sort about Orrin. And if Orrin heard you say that you''d be sorry. He can be awfully mean. But I know something has happened. It was just a cheap rooming house, and I didn''t like the manager at all. A horrid kind of man. He said Orrin had moved away a couple of weeks before and he didn''t know where to and he didn''t care, and all he wanted was a good slug of gin. I don''t know why Orrin would even live in a place like that."

"Did you say slug of gin?" I asked.

She blushed. "That''s what the manager said. I''m just telling you."

"All right," I said. "Go on."

"Well, I called the place where he worked. The Cal-Western Company, you know. And they said he''d been laid off like a lot of others and that was all they knew. So then I went to the post office and asked if Orrin had put in a change of address to anywhere. And they said they couldn''t give me any information. It was against the regulations. So I told them how it was and the man said, well if I was his sister he''d go look. So he went and looked and came back and said no. Orrin hadn''t put in any change of address. So then I began to get a little frightened. He might have had an accident or something."

"Did it occur to you to ask the police about that?"

"I wouldn''t dare ask the police. Orrin would never forgive me. He''s difficult enough at the best of times. Our family--" She hesitated and there was something behind her eyes she tried not to have there. So she went on breathlessly: "Our family''s not the kind of family--"

"Look," I said wearily, "I''m not talking about the guy lifting a wallet. I''m talking about him getting knocked down by a car and losing his memory or being too badly hurt to talk."

She gave me a level look which was not too admiring. "If it was anything like that, we''d know," she said. "Everybody has things in their pockets to tell who they are."

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4.3 out of 54.3 out of 5
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Top reviews from the United States

R. Stone
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Amazon must do better policing the kindle additions they sell as this is ...
Reviewed in the United States on January 11, 2018
Don''t buy the Kindle edition. Important part of the book is completely left out. Amazon must do better policing the kindle additions they sell as this is not the first time this has happened to me. Also, the typos in many of the kindle books are making me question whether... See more
Don''t buy the Kindle edition. Important part of the book is completely left out. Amazon must do better policing the kindle additions they sell as this is not the first time this has happened to me. Also, the typos in many of the kindle books are making me question whether to buy anymore Kindle books.
35 people found this helpful
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Dave Wilde
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Dorothy, You''re Not in Kansas Anymore
Reviewed in the United States on February 19, 2020
"The Little Sister" continues Chandler''s Philip Marlowe franchise, a private eye series that became the mold for so many private eyes that followed in the succeeding decades. Chandler had the knack of combining the gritty realism and day to day language if the streets with... See more
"The Little Sister" continues Chandler''s Philip Marlowe franchise, a private eye series that became the mold for so many private eyes that followed in the succeeding decades. Chandler had the knack of combining the gritty realism and day to day language if the streets with a witty prose that sometimes had no match in the way he could turn a phrase.

Chandler used his alter ego Marlowe to poke fun at stereotypes of people. And there''s no better example of that than the client who waltzes into his office, all innocent schoolgirl from small time Kansas, all prim and proper, and librarian-like. Marlowe pokes fun at her over and over, not buying her wild-eyed innocence. Not buying her story about her Bible-reading brother and why he''s disappeared.

Chandler does this again and again through this series which is worth rereading more than once. He keeps poking at caricatures of people, particularly his clients and their families. And often when you scratch the surface, there''s more to people than you''d assume. In the end, people are far more complex than you''d think at first glance.

Once again, Chandler gives us a complex, headturning plot that doesn''t make sense until the end. But the end when it all comes together is fully satisfying.
5 people found this helpful
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RPL
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Raymond Chandler strikes again!
Reviewed in the United States on December 3, 2020
Chandler''s private eye, Philip Marlowe, is the central character in this fast-moving, complex crime puzzler that propels the reader along a track of deception in a world of brilliantly-described environmental sight and sound. The time is the 1940''s; the place is southern... See more
Chandler''s private eye, Philip Marlowe, is the central character in this fast-moving, complex crime puzzler that propels the reader along a track of deception in a world of brilliantly-described environmental sight and sound. The time is the 1940''s; the place is southern California warped by the distorted values of Hollywood. In his characteristic dark, cynical and defiant mindset, Chandler''s anti-hero takes on a co-cast of crooks, cops of varying reputability, entry-level movie stars and numerous peripheral characters all of whom are delineated in delightful detail. Each scene is so fully described and developed that one feels that he is seeing and hearing the action on every page. The violence is subtly muted.

So many authors subsequent to Chandler wrote crime stories, some successfully, in this noir style that the style became somewhat formulaic. It''s important to understand that Chandler is an original and that to revel in his darkness is a key to the fullest appreciation of this important and eminently enjoyable book.
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Warren A. LewisTop Contributor: Historical Fiction Books
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Marlowe For Hire-Investigating for Free
Reviewed in the United States on November 14, 2019
This is a good solid story, although I have to admit at times I had to re-read sections because I missed some key element of the passage that got me lost in the story, and then the explanation at the end rambles a bit and becomes hard to keep up, next to impossible to... See more
This is a good solid story, although I have to admit at times I had to re-read sections because I missed some key element of the passage that got me lost in the story, and then the explanation at the end rambles a bit and becomes hard to keep up, next to impossible to follow. That is, at least until you re-read it. Women seem to want to throw themselves at Phillip Marlowe throughout the book, and to his credit, he stays focused on solving his mystery.

Orfamay Quest hires him to find her brother, irritating him at one moment by judging him, throwing herself at him the next, then being judgmental again. Two actresses introduce him to the seedy side of Hollywood. With an opportunity to walk away from this one, to his credit Marlowe stays with this one until he finds his answers and solves the case.
3 people found this helpful
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Mike Morrison
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Fun, typical Raymond Chandler!
Reviewed in the United States on July 27, 2020
If you like Philip Marlowe, you''ll love this. It has all the usual stuff: Confusing identities, colorful characters, scheming miscreants, unforeseen plot twists, colorful settings, and the usual plethora of fun asides and clever wisecracks. It''s just plain fun to... See more
If you like Philip Marlowe, you''ll love this. It has all the usual stuff: Confusing identities, colorful characters, scheming miscreants, unforeseen plot twists, colorful settings, and the usual plethora of fun asides and clever wisecracks.

It''s just plain fun to read, and, as usual, it requires effort to keep all the players and events straight. Chandler''s method is to tell Dear Reader only the same things Marlowe knows, so if a character lies to him, he''s lying to Dear Reader, too. A helpful literary device is, Marlowe occasionally encounters a new character, and he relates all he knows up to that point. It''s a clever way of reminding Dear Reader what''s going on.

It''s great fun! If you''re familiar with Raymond Chandler, get this! If you''re new to the genre or the author, this is a good place to start!
One person found this helpful
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Elaine Bailey
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Savage shortcuts to nowhere
Reviewed in the United States on October 11, 2018
The L.A. in this book is a hollow and soulless place with empty, despairing people. Chandler writes noir, with whiskey breakfasts and corpses and nyphomaniacs, where the quest for justice is always dangerous, hard work. But he describes a washed out functionary he has to... See more
The L.A. in this book is a hollow and soulless place with empty, despairing people. Chandler writes noir, with whiskey breakfasts and corpses and nyphomaniacs, where the quest for justice is always dangerous, hard work. But he describes a washed out functionary he has to pass by as ''what happens when people trade life for existence and ambition for security.'' Many of the inhabitants of his city have sold out for meaningless things, while others lurk in the shadows, taking savage shortcuts to nowhere. Authority toadies corruptly to money. Marlowe reels off a scathing indictment of the place to Dolores, who replies that it''s like that in most big cities, making him describe what makes this city less than any other. Marlowe has the moral standing to point this out. His difficulties often stem from his own sense of obligation to his client, which makes him unwilling to do the easy thing if it would mean betrayal. Read this book, in other words!
3 people found this helpful
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RJ Stokely
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A Good Book - Just Not as Good as the Rest in the Series
Reviewed in the United States on September 2, 2014
The Little Sister is the fifth entry in Chandler''s Philip Marlowe series. This is a good read and recommended for fans of the genre, I will warn you that it is no Farewell, My Lovely or The Big Sleep. There is an overall tone of loneliness in The Little Sister as Marlowe... See more
The Little Sister is the fifth entry in Chandler''s Philip Marlowe series. This is a good read and recommended for fans of the genre, I will warn you that it is no Farewell, My Lovely or The Big Sleep. There is an overall tone of loneliness in The Little Sister as Marlowe crosses paths with gangsters, blackmailers, hop heads, and starlets all for an eccentric young girl looking for her brother. The dialogue and stream of consciousness style are well done and as usual very witty. Chandler also delivers a scathing critique on the film industry which is not to be missed.
Yet, there is something missing when one compares this to his other works. The level of suspense does not seem to be quite there as it was in previous entries. Marlowe seems a bit tired. However, this is worth a read, especially if you have read previous entries. If you enjoy this I would recommend the illustrated edition, and the film adaptation from 1969 (called "Marlowe) starring James Garner.
16 people found this helpful
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Cody Seibel
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A Good Marlowe. Not the Best, but Good.
Reviewed in the United States on August 5, 2019
This is a solid novel, and decent Chandler, but not his best. At his best, Chandler puts down more great lines in a chapter than most Hollywood movies can fit in a feature. On top of that, he layers deeply drawn character, descriptive prose that puts... See more
This is a solid novel, and decent Chandler, but not his best.

At his best, Chandler puts down more great lines in a chapter than most Hollywood movies can fit in a feature.

On top of that, he layers deeply drawn character, descriptive prose that puts most contemporary poetry to shame, and discourses on society, manners, and life-as-lived that run...

...as deep as the hole a dame can put in your heart. A hole so deep it gets to your liver, and you start to think you can fill it with gin. But you can''t, the way you can''t drown a fish.

Though, men drown in gin every day.

...

Listen, if you want *good* prose, read Chandler! Not reviews!
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Top reviews from other countries

Roysie
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Faultless Author ! Faultless Novel !
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 3, 2015
Despite it''s 1960''s theme I adore the the film "Marlowe", which was released in 1969 and starred James Garner and had a great supporting cast that included Gayle Hunnicutt, Bruce Lee, Carol O''Connor, the one and only Rita Moreno, and Jackie Coogan et al. I first saw...See more
Despite it''s 1960''s theme I adore the the film "Marlowe", which was released in 1969 and starred James Garner and had a great supporting cast that included Gayle Hunnicutt, Bruce Lee, Carol O''Connor, the one and only Rita Moreno, and Jackie Coogan et al. I first saw it on TV in the 1970''s shortly after my parents had upgraded from a rental B&W TV set to a rental colour TV set. The film was brill and when I found out it was based on Chandler''s book "The Little Sister" I became hooked. In the B&W TV years & then later colour TV years I always watched and thoroughly enjoyed those movies built around Chandler''s writing. Bogey & Bacall in "The Big Sleep", Dick Powell in "Farewell My Lovely", Robert Montgomery in "Lady in the Lake" (uniquely filmed in 1st person viewpoint) etc, and thats when I started buying his entire collection of novels and collections of short stories. My collection was complete and over the years I read and re-read all of the books, absorbing all of the stories (even the pre-Marlowe short stories that featured such characters as a hotel detective). Just over 2 years ago myself and my wife moved house and guess what happened. Finally unpacked all packing boxes and I''ve lost the entire book collection (it may have been accidently left at a charity shop along with other items that weren''t required when we moved, or might even have been left in a bin - I''ll never know). The task for me now is to rebuild my collection from scratch. My 3rd purchase (1st via amazon) is "The Little Sister". A brilliant novel with a very clever plot and a superb denouement. The way the book ends leaves me wanting more and thats such a good feeling. You almost want to complete the story arc to your own satisfaction but Chandler purposely ends the story in that particular way, and it''s so utterly mesmerising. A message to Raymond Chandler from beyond the grave. I salute you and I thank you so very much.
3 people found this helpful
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R de Bulat
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
One of Chandler''s best stories
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 20, 2013
I wrote recently about an omnibus edition of Chandler''s novels; this is the one that was missing. All of Raymond Chandlers detective books are excellent and you would be hard pushed to choose one that stands out beyond the rest; each have their qualities, but few are as...See more
I wrote recently about an omnibus edition of Chandler''s novels; this is the one that was missing. All of Raymond Chandlers detective books are excellent and you would be hard pushed to choose one that stands out beyond the rest; each have their qualities, but few are as hard hitting and as dark as this one. The story involves the search for a missing brother, instigated by his little sister. Early on, Phillip Marlowe''s suspicions are raised and he hustles himself a Hollywood starlet, in the making, as a client: giving nothing away, the plot is involved and eventually reaches it conclusion with all loose ends tidied up, but no-one escapes from the critical eye that cynically dissects the post-war era and Hollywood and what the City of Los Angeles is becoming - old values gone and the new given over to the selling of sex - in the movie industry, in relationships between people, for the purposes of making a buck, or a lot of bucks, depending where you are in the food chain. This is the darkness, a world weary detective who has seen too much and likes too little of what he sees now, making the whole weary business mean and sordid: no-one comes out of it unscathed. Despite the darkness, this is not a gloomy story; it has pace and action, with written descriptions that make the time and place real. Not to be missed; if you haven''t read it, I encourage you to do so and if you haven''t got it, get it - it is worth reading again.
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Dr W. H. Konarzewski
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Another cynical masterpiece
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 1, 2014
I''m not sure I followed all the twists and turns of the plot, but just about enough to keep up with the story. Like many of Chandler''s readers, I suspect, I read him primarily because of the sheer brilliance and poetry of his language - his ability to capture a scene or a...See more
I''m not sure I followed all the twists and turns of the plot, but just about enough to keep up with the story. Like many of Chandler''s readers, I suspect, I read him primarily because of the sheer brilliance and poetry of his language - his ability to capture a scene or a character or an expression. His profusion of similes are in a class of their own. e.g. "She laughed. I guess it was a silvery tinkle where she was. It sounded like somebody putting away saucepans where I was." e.g. "A smile picked delicately at the corners of her lips, very slowly like a child trying to pick up a snowflake." There are one or two minor irritations. I find it tiresome that almost every female character falls instantly in love with Marlowe, but perhaps that''s just jealousy... This is one of Chandler''s great works. I might read it again one day to try and find out what it was all about. And then a third time, just for the language.
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ror124
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
The greatest crime writer ever
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 7, 2017
While I couldn''t keep track of the plot all the way through (but who cares it has a great finale) this book must be one of the greatest pieces of American literature for the style alone. It is dazzling and makes you stop, scratch your head and smile or laugh aloud. He is as...See more
While I couldn''t keep track of the plot all the way through (but who cares it has a great finale) this book must be one of the greatest pieces of American literature for the style alone. It is dazzling and makes you stop, scratch your head and smile or laugh aloud. He is as tantalising and spellbinding as a polar bear on roller skates.
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Bobster
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Fantastic
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 11, 2013
A classic crime and detective novel from the 1940''s, but it''s still hugely readable and entertaining even now. Some things never change - and the criminals, bad guys, gamblers, corrupt policemen and beautiful women Marlow encounters seem timeless. I read this in 2 sittings...See more
A classic crime and detective novel from the 1940''s, but it''s still hugely readable and entertaining even now. Some things never change - and the criminals, bad guys, gamblers, corrupt policemen and beautiful women Marlow encounters seem timeless. I read this in 2 sittings and immediately ordered more. Chandlers Philip Marlow is a great character, always just about managing to be a good guy, but only just sometimes, a hard boiled detective who''s comfortable in Los Angeles seedy underworld, but who''s got his own kind of moral code. A strength of character and integrity greater than those around him. Chandlers one of these authors that can develop a character in a sentence, and the one liners and dialogue are immense, there''s hardly a passage that isn''t quotable and the characters jump off the page. Nevertheless, its not just the great characters and snappy one liners, the plot is pacey and exciting and there''s a nice twist at the end. Buy one of Chandler''s books and it''s a cert you''ll read them all. I actually quite envy anyone who''ll be reading Raymond Chandler for the first time, he''s head and shoulders above the rest.
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