- Paperback: 240 pages
- Publisher: Penguin; 01 edition (5 April 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0241962528
- ISBN-13: 978-0241962527
- Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 1.5 x 18.1 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 116,304 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Thin Man (Penguin Essentials) Paperback – 5 Apr 2012
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Harsh lights and romantic black shadows: this is the heyday of American crime writing (Guardian)
The ace performer (Raymond Chandler)
From the Inside Flap
Nick and Nora Charles are Hammett's most enchanting creations, a rich, glamorous couple who solve homicides in between wisecracks and martinis. At once knowing and unabashedly romantic, The Thin Man is a murder mystery that doubles as a sophisticated comedy of manners. --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
The world view is probably somewhat autobiographical as Hammett spent more of his time in Hollywood late in his career, rather than working as a fiction writer. The echoes of F. Scott Fitzgerald are very strong, especially to Tender Is The Night.
For those who love the classic "tough guy" stories by Hammett, this one can never have the same appeal. Nick is still tough, but he mostly shows it by taking abuse with style. That's a feminine kind of toughness that comes from maturity. He passes off the chances to trade punches when they arise.
The characterizations of Nick and Nora Charles are the strength of the novel. But the book transcends that by also creating a picture of a flawed marriage between two people with hearts of gold who love each other, but are also killing each other. The development of the relationship is brilliant.
The mystery itself isn't very mysterious. It just has lots of red herrings. If you judge mysteries by the quality of the plot unfolding of that mystery, you will probably rate this book at 3 or 4 stars.Read more ›
Hammett first made his reputation as a pulp magazine author, churning out a series of short stories in a lean, mean prose that drew numerous fans and built critical attention. One of the most popular characters of his short story work was known as "the Continental Op"--an insurance detective ("Op" being short for "operative") whose various adventures would ultimately form the basis for this, Hammett's second novel-length effort.
Although some will disagree, I personally consider THE DAIN CURSE an noticeable improvement over Hammett's first novel, RED HARVEST. Like most of Hammett's work, both works are noteable for their hard-hitting prose, both offer convoluted plots, and both provide us with archetypical characterizations--but where I find RED HARVEST a strangely flat and slightly up-hill read, THE DAIN CURSE hooks you with the first few pages and holds your attention with ease throughout the entire course of the novel.
The story is, as previously stated, convoluted. The Op is called in to investigate stolen diamonds--but strangely enough, these diamonds are not really precious: they are imperfect stones loaned by a jeweler to scientist/artist Leggett, who experiments with them in an effort to improve their quality.Read more ›
Often over-shadowed in the eyes of readers by the novels that preceeded and followed, "The Maltese Falcon" and "The Thin Man," "The Glass Key" is Hammett at the very top of his form. Writing as no one had before, or has since.
Nobody does in any detecting because they are all sozzled. Any attempt at a student drinking-game would result in an A & E stomach-pumping every 20 pages. Drinks occur at any and every moment of the day with the main excuse often being, 'to cut the phlegm'. Charming.
The book felt like a short story that had been grossly inflated. If this book had not had Mr Hammett's name on the cover I would have thrown it in the bin. The first 40 pages and Mr Hammett's track record force me to give it two stars, but this is a lazy work padded with tedious dialogue that faills to progress the story.
Mr Hammett's last novel. Maybe he knew that the star had burned brightly.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Having watched all the movies in The Thin Man franchise in the last couple of years, I decided it was time to sit down and read the Dashiell Hammett book that started it all. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Mark Baker - Carstairs Considers
Dashiell Hammett's creative period was very short, effectively terminated in the 1940s by chronic ill health (TB), alcoholism, and political persecution because of his extreme... Read morePublished 21 months ago by Brian R. Martin
As a classic detective story, the book is hard to fault, with a well constucted plot and enough clues scattered about to maintain the reader's interest. Read morePublished on 21 April 2014 by E. Orr