Synopses & Reviews
Dashiell Hammett was a crime writer who elevated the genre to true literature, and The Thin Man
was Hammett's last—and most successful—novel. Following the enormous success of "The Thin Man" movie in 1934, Hammett was commissioned to write stories for additional films. He wrote two full-length novellas, for the films that became "After the Thin Man" and "Another Thin Man." Bringing back his classic characters, retired private investigator Nick Charles and his former debutante wife Nora, who return home to find Noras family gardener murdered, pulling the couple back into another deadly game of cat and mouse. Hammett has written two fully satisfying "Thin Man" stories, with classic, barbed Hammett dialogue and fully developed characters.
Neither of these stories has been previously published (except for a partial in a small magazine 25 years ago). The Return of the Thin Man is a hugely entertaining read that brings back two classic characters from one of the greatest of mystery writers who ever lived. This book is destined to become essential reading for Hammett's millions of fans and a new generation of mystery readers the world over.
"Hammett completists and film fans will best appreciate this collection containing the story treatments that became After the Thin Man (1936) and Another Thin Man (1939), the sequels to the original Hollywood hit, The Thin Man (1934), starring William Powell and Myrna Loy as imbibing investigators Nick and Nora Charles, abetted by their adorable dog, Asta. Written in movie shorthand ('Nick and Nora exchange suspicious glances'), these treatments don't represent Hammett's artistic peak, though there's the occasional nugget ('He is having the first Ã¢Â€Â˜clean' love affair of his life and thinks this slut is Joan of Arc'). Hammett scholar Richard Layman and Hammett's granddaughter, Julie M. Rivett, provide background on such matters as negotiations with MGM. Amazingly, the alcoholic author reported he spent 10 months sober while writing one of these bibulous scripts. In the 1939 effort, one of the two words uttered by the infant Nick Jr. is drunk. A short unproduced treatment from 1938 titled 'Sequel to the Thin Man' rounds out the book. Agent: Joy Harris, Joy Harris Literary." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
PRAISE FOR RETURN OF THE THIN MAN
"This first unabridged appearance of two Nick and Nora Charles 'novellas' by Hammett should be an occasion for delight, and it is." —The Wall Street Journal
"Read Return of the Thin Man and rediscover why Dashiell Hammett was the peerless master of crime fiction in all its dark and bloody glory." New York Journal of Books
"A volume no fan of Hammett's, of Nick and Nora Charles, of 'The Thin Man' series should even think of doing without." The Huffington Post
PRAISE FOR DASHIELL HAMMETT
"I think Hammett's stories are about the best there are." Ross MacDonald
"Hammett's prose was clean and entirely unique. His characters were as sharply and economically defined as any in American fiction." The New York Times
"Hammett . . . wrote scenes that seemed never to have been written before." Raymond Chandler
"The exuberance of language, the relish with which seedieness is described . . . it's a pleasure to imagine young Hammett cutting loose with whatever rascally high jinks he could cook up." Margaret Atwood
"An acknowledged literary landmark." The New York Times Book Review
About the Author
Dashiell Hammett was an American author of hard-boiled detective novels and short stories, screenplay writer, and political activist. He created enduring characters including Sam Spade (The Maltese Falcon), Nick and Nora Charles (The Thin Man), and the Continental Op (Red Harvest and The Dain Curse).