Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Bookworming: The Big Sleep

The Big Sleep, Raymond Chandler, ***
I must get two things out of the way before going into the review. First, the usual caveat for a book born out of the late-30's pulps: some content may be considered offensive in our current culture. Second, I love the 1946 movie adaptation staring Humphrey Bogart enough that I can't read Philip Marlowe's dialog in any other voice.

Really, there isn't much I can say that hasn't already been said. Chandler's first novel is famous for its convoluted (some would say incomplete) plot, for its hard boiled main character, and some very sharp phrase turning. As for me, I found some real spark there, especially in the character writing and descriptions, but if I'm fair (and it's hard to be), things are a little uneven. It's considered a classic for a reason, but it's just below four-star territory. Though with this as a starting point, I do expect there will be more Chandler reading in my future.

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