The Big Sleep and Other Novels
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The Big Sleep and Other Novels

By (author) Raymond Chandler

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Raymond Chandler was America's preeminent writer of detective fiction, and this "Penguin Modern Classics" edition of "The Big Sleep and Other Novels" collects three of the best novels to feature his hard-drinking, philosophising PI, Philip Marlowe. Raymond Chandler created the fast talking, trouble seeking Californian private eye Philip Marlowe for his first great novel "The Big Sleep" in 1939. Often imitated but never bettered, it is in Marlowe's long shadow that every fictional detective must stand - and under the influence of Raymond Chandler's addictive prose that every crime author must write. Marlowe's entanglement with the Sternwood family - and an attendant cast of colourful underworld figures - is the background to a story reflecting all the tarnished glitter of the great American Dream. The hard-boiled detective's iconic image burns just as brightly in "Farewell My Lovely", on the trail of a missing nightclub crooner. And the inimitable Marlowe is able to prove that trouble really is his business in Raymond Chandler's brilliant epitaph, "The Long Goodbye". Raymond Chandler (1888-1959) was born in Chicago. It was during the Depression era that he seriously turned his hand to writing and his first published story appeared in the pulp magazine "Black Mask" in 1933, followed six years later by his first novel, "The Big Sleep", adapted into Howard Hawks' classic 1946 film noir, starring Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. If you liked "The Big Sleep and Other Novels", you might enjoy Dashiell Hammett's "The Thin Man", also available in "Penguin Modern Classics". "One of the greatest crime writers, who set standards that others still try to attain". ("Sunday Times"). "Raymond Chandler invented a new way of talking about America, and America has never looked the same to us since." (Paul Auster, author of "The New York Trilogy"). "Chandler wrote like a slumming angel and invested the sun-blinded streets of Los Angelos with a romantic presence". (Ross Macdonald, author of "The Drowning Pool").

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  • Paperback | 672 pages
  • 128 x 194 x 32mm | 439.98g
  • 03 Feb 2000
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • PENGUIN CLASSICS
  • London
  • English
  • 014118261X
  • 9780141182612
  • 16,000

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Author Information

Raymond Chandler was born in Chicago in 1888 and moved to England with his family when he was twelve. He attended Dulwich College, Alma Mater to some of the twentieth century's most renowned writers. Returning to America in 1912, he settled in California, worked in a number of jobs, and later married. It was during the Depression era that he seriously turned his hand to writing and his first published story appeared in the pulp magazine Black Mask in 1933, followed six years later by his first novel. The Big Sleep introduced the world to Philip Marlowe, the often imitated but never-bettered hard-boiled private investigator. It is in Marlowe's long shadow that every fictional detective must stand - and under the influence of Raymond Chandler's addictive prose that every crime author must write.

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Review text

This is the real thing! For a penny under a tenner you not only get The Big Sleep, but also Farewell, My Lovely and The Long Good-Bye, beautifully packaged together. These are the novels that started the PI tradition that is still being enthusiastically written today, and no crime fan should be without a complete set of Chandler on their shelves. (Kirkus UK)

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