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The Thin Man by Dashiell Hammett

The Thin Man

by Dashiell Hammett

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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Showing 1-5 of 60 (next | show all)
Hammett is well-known as the creator of hard-boiled detective Sam Spade, famously portrayed by Humphrey Bogart in such films as The Maltese Falcon. This book features the husband and wife detective "team" of Nick and Nora. I use quotes around team because Nora's role is considerably less prominent than Nick's in the actual crime-solving. With Hammett dialogue is paramount, so there is plenty of witty banter and the story moves along at a rapid pace, each new chapter picking up right where the last one left off. Setting is secondary to characterization and how the characters interact with each other. There is a lot of drinking and smoking; Nick frequently starts the day with a drink to "cut the phlegm" before eating his breakfast around noon or later. It was definitely an easy and entertaining read, but I have to say I was a bit disappointed at the end after all the build-up. ( )
  S.D. | Apr 4, 2014 |
So-so....not my cup of tea. I liked the movie better! ( )
  hemlokgang | Dec 28, 2013 |

Some good noir, for sure. I loved Nick & Nora. Now I've got to watch the film :)) ( )
  allisonneke | Dec 17, 2013 |
Definitely Hammett's most "meta" novel. Mimi is his best female character and Charles is easily the most silently layered and tortured detective I've ever read - easily Hammett's best lead. The novel's biggest problem is probably its lack of gunplay and action. But it's still one of the author's best. ( )
  Algybama | Nov 23, 2013 |
A crime fiction written in the 1930's by Dahiel Hammett about a retired detective in New York over the Christmas holiday who gets involved in solving a murder mystery. Just about eveyone in the book is a possible suspect. The couple are heavy drinkers in the social circuit who make sarcastic remarks about everyone. As far as mysteries go, I thought it was pretty good and kept you guessing to the end. I found it hard to believe anyone could drink that much from the time they wake up until they go to bed and in fact they hardly sleep. The novel is set in the thirties and obviously these people weren't being effected by the depression. I found it hard to follow who was the voice as the protagonist, Nick, is telling the story in first person. I haven't seen the movie but it read like it would adapt very well to movie. ( )
  Kristelh | Nov 16, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (36 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Dashiell Hammettprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Huhtala, EeroTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Walker, JamesCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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I was leaning against the bar in a speakeasy on Fifty-second Street, waiting for Nora to finish her Christmas shopping, when a girl got up from the table where she had been sitting with three other people and came over to me.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0679722637, Paperback)

The Thin Man, Dashiell Hammett's classic tale of murder in Manhattan, became the popular movie series with William Powell and Myrna Loy, and both the movies and the novel continue to captivate new generations of fans.

Nick and Nora Charles, accompanied by their schnauzer, Asta, are lounging in their suite at the Normandie in New York City for the Christmas holiday, enjoying the prerogatives of wealth: meals delivered at any hour, theater openings, taxi rides at dawn, rubbing elbows with the gangster element in speakeasies. They should be annoyingly affected, but they charm. Mad about each other, sardonic, observant, kind to those in need, and cool in a fight, Nick and Nora are graceful together, and their home life provides a sanctuary from the rough world of gangsters, hoodlums, and police investigations into which Nick is immediately plunged.

A lawyer-friend asks Nick to help find a killer and reintroduces him to the family of Richard Wynant, a more-than-eccentric inventor who disappeared from society 10 years before. His former wife, the lush and manipulative Mimi, has remarried a European fortune hunter who turns out to be a vindictive former associate of her first husband and is bent on the ruin of Wynant's family fortune. Wynant's children, Dorothy and Gilbert, seem to have inherited the family aversion to straight talk. Dorothy, who has matured into a beautiful young woman, has a crush on Nick, and so, in a hero-worshipping way, does mama's boy Gilbert. Nick and Nora respond kindly to their neediness as Nick tries to make sense of misinformation, false identities, far-fetched alibis, and, at the center of the confusion, the mystery of The Thin Man, Richard Wynant. Is he mad? Is he a killer? Or is he really an eccentric inventor protecting his discovery from intellectual theft?

The dialogue is spare, the locales lively, and Nick, the narrator, shows us the players as they are, while giving away little of his own thoughts. No one is telling the whole truth, but Nick remains mostly patient as he doggedly tries to backtrack the lies. Hammett's New York is a cross between Damon Runyon and Scott Fitzgerald--more glamorous than real, but compelling when visited in the company of these two charmers. The lives of the rich and famous don't get any better than this! --Barbara Schlieper

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:30:11 -0400)

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Nick Charles searches for a wealthy inventor who is the prime suspect in a New York City murder case.

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An edition of this book was published by Audible.com.

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Penguin Australia

Two editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 014119460X, 0241962528

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