21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An truly outstanding novel!
This book, James M. Cain's debut novel, is arguable the finest of its genre and certainly of its period. Whereas previous first person narrative crime novels were seen from the eyes of the law, "The Postman Always Rings Twice" describes the crimes committed from the perpetrator's point of view. The novella moves along at a fast speed and can be read in one...
Published on 20 Jun 2001
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Postmqn Always Rings Twice.
The story is straightforward written in a worh a day Amer English. The characters are drawn with a few significant strokes and the trail ofactions flow easily. I shared the emotional pains of the man and his partner. Theey were responsible for the liquidation of the husband, still .......
Published 10 months ago by Kanen Ragoonaden
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful short read,
I was surprised at how short this book is but it really pulls a pithy pinch and is most enjoyable. It is fast paced and you can almost hear the characters speaking the words. Great story and highly recommended
5.0 out of 5 stars The best of noir,
This is one of the best noir thrillers and, in my opinion, one of the best books of the last century. The writing is first class and the story grips you from the beginning.
4.0 out of 5 stars Period-feel noir, darkly humorous and with its own twisted morality,
I actually think I prefer the film(s). I love film noir, and I think the filmmakers took the best parts of this story and made more of it than its original.
It's not at all bad though. A drifter lists after a roadside café owner's wife, taking a job there to be close to her. They start the affair we see coming, and decide that they want to get her husband out of the way. Can they commit the perfect murder? Can their 'love' survive intrigue? Double cross? Detection?
Frank, our drifter, is pretty honest about himself - he knows he's not made to settle down, doesn't try to keep away from another man's wife. Cora is written to be the more scheming character, the cheating wife who might be using her new lover. I felt pity for her husband Nick ('the Greek'), who may not be a romantic hero but is just a regular, decent guy. Our lovers find him inconvenient though and the 100-page books ages to fit in murder attempts, court scenes, holidays, deaths and even a puma.
The dialogue feels a bit stilted and stereotyped occasionally (which also plays better on screen), and I felt some confusion with the lawyer-talk, but it's nice and dark, funny and very much of its period.
5.0 out of 5 stars YOU MADE THE BED, NOW LIE IN IT!,
THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE by James M Cain
This book is a riveting classic of duplicity, love found, lost, and then found again, even eighty years after its first publication date. It has moments of gut wrenching suspense interspersed with examples of heartless cruelty, and innocent, young, sweet love. The writing is taut, sufficiently descriptive and perhaps most surprisingly, the story is still relevant today.
The best laid plans of mice and men can be lain flat by the simplest of things and early in the book, a cat of all things spoils the party for our two duplicitous love birds.
i find it hard to believe that two people who can be so cruel and heartless can ever amount to anything and if fate or karma has a say in the way things turn out for any of us in this world, then young Cora and the tramp Frank Chambers don't gave much to look forward to. And they won't get any sympathy from me.
This book is a classic of the genre. Those with any interest in crime, suspense, noir, or even the odd love story should get something from reading this delightful work of literature. Full marks for this one.
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliantly Constructed Thriller,
A great read and surprisingly graphic considering the era in which it was written. Very true to the film version.
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Roman Noir,
This is a fascinating read if you are interested in the evolution of the modern crime novel as the action is views through the eyes of the perpetrator rather than the onvestigator
4.0 out of 5 stars Hard Boiled - One of the best examples,
TPT is a perfect book for those who do not have a lot of time or perhaps prefer to complete a book in one or two sittings. I bought it before a 6 hour flight and it was a perfect travelling companion. Within the first few pages the book grips you and it never lets up.
This book would not be suitable for those who enjoy long evocative descriptions of landscape or deep psychological profiles. The sentences are short, the wiritng is simple and the story itself is at times brutal, cruel and ultimately sad. Characters with very little to lose act on impulse without thinking through fully the consequences (moral and otherwise) of their actions. Although there is a twist of sorts at the end, you know very early on that this is not going to be a story with a happy ending for anyone.
I gave it 4 stars out of 5 because I wouldn't class this book as great literature but it is certainly one of the best examples of the hard-boiled genre.
I also read 'Double Indemnity' which is also exellent but I much preferred TPT.
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast-paced crime classic,
This is a really great book. Its very short, without a single wasted word and if you've seen the two film versions, then you're in for some shocks. Can't reveal too much, as it might spoil it for the 'uninitiated'.
What's truly fascinating for me now, while reading it, is working out how and why David Mamet made the critical choices he did for his 1980s screenplay featuring Jack Nicholson & Jessica Lange.
I've seen sections of the Lana Turner version (lipstick scene most notably), but its just too dated for my taste: I want tables, unbaked bread and flour everywhere!
In case you're interested, the book was favourably reviewed on the book show for The World Service, by that woman with the deep voice - whatshername? - which prompted me to download the printed version.
(The Jack Nicholson screen version is in my top 5 all-time best movies.)
Adios People !
5.0 out of 5 stars packs a powerful punch,
This review is from: The Postman Always Rings Twice (Paperback)
While the story is quite short, it packs a powerful punch. It's a long time since I've read a novel, where my first action on finishing it is to go back to the beginning and start again. It has a small cast of principal characters and is very well plotted, with a credible and clever story and a noir sensibility that leaves the reader emotionally drained by the end. The writing is tight, thin on thick description, and proceeding through a series of nicely judged scenes that documents a fatal attraction and its consequences. A powerful book, that's worth reading twice.
5.0 out of 5 stars So simple..,
This is one of the most stunning books of the last century. It concerns a drifter, Frank, who accidentally ends up at a roadside sandwich bar on his travels. The owner of the cafe offers Frank work, and after having a glance at the owners wife, Frank decides to remain. This is the trigger for a modern tragedy exploring sexual passion, repulsion, deceit, the struggle for survival, the need for freedom, the desire for stability, success (however modest) - and all that in a novella of 110 pages.
Cain has written the story from the point of view of Frank himself - and it is therefore very simple, minimal and accessible. Frank speaks throughout his tale with great honesty - even when this disgusts the reader - the result is a tale that is both disturbing and compelling. I picked it up for a bed time read at 11 p.m. and didn't put it down until I had finished at around 01:30.
Recommend? To Grown ups - without hesitation.
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The Postman Always Rings Twice (CRIME MASTERWORKS) by James M. Cain (Paperback - 1 Dec 2005)
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