the maltese falcon dashiell hammett

Dashiell Hammett (May 27, 1894 – January 10, 1961) 

American author of hard-boiled detective novels and short stories, screenwriter, and political activist. Among the enduring characters he created are Sam Spade (The Maltese Falcon), Nick and Nora Charles (The Thin Man), and the Continental Op (Red Harvest and The Dain Curse).

Hammett “is now widely regarded as one of the finest mystery writers of all time”. In his obituary in The New York Times, he was described as “the dean of the… ‘hard-boiled’ school of detective fiction." His novels and stories also had a significant influence on films. (Wikipedia)

From our stacks: Dust cover detail from The Maltese Falcon By Dashiell Hammett. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1945. Jacket design by Warren Chappell.

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Samuel Spade’s jaw was long and bony, his chin a jutting V under the more flexible V of his mouth. His nostrils curved back to make another, smaller, V. His yellow-grey eyes were horizontal. The V motif was picked up again by thickish brows rising outward from twin creases above a hooked nose, and his pale brown hair grew down from high flat temples in a point on his forehead. He looked rather pleasantly like a blond Satan.

A young woman came through the doorway. She advanced slowly, with tentative steps, looking at Spade with cobalt-blue eyes that were both shy and probing. She was tall and pliantly slender, without angularity anywhere. Her body was erect and high-breasted, her legs long, her hands and feet narrow. She wore two shades of blue that had been selected because of her eyes. The hair curling from under her blue hat was darkly red, her full lips more brightly red. White teeth glistened in the crescent her timid smile made.

Dashiell Hammett, The Maltese Falcon, illustrated by Ann Uland @nymaulth for my P.I./client commission series.

anonymous asked:

Have you found the time to report on what you believe was in the sugar bowl that was so vital to everyone searching for it?

The issue here is that Daniel Handler never meant for the Sugar Bowl to hold anything identifiable. It’s a McGuffin (this trope is lampshaded in “The End” by Sunny): an element which is supposed to drive the story forward in terms of plot but is never supposed to become its focus. “A Series Of Unfortunate Events” is full of McGuffins which are introduced and progressively forgotten: the Baudelaire fortune, the Snicket file, the survivor of the Baudelaire fire, etc. At this point it is safe to say that, if Daniel Handler is not interested in determining the contents of the Sugar Bowl, we’ll never find out either.

The most satisfying solution is to believe the Sugar Bowl held an important piece of information, either a recording or a written document. Which would mean we’re solving the problem without actually answering the question.

Another interesting theory is that what the Sugar Bowl contains is not actually that significant or interesting. The people who actually knew its contents have been dead for a long time and everyone else is just pretending to know why it’s so important. Such a wild goose chase would be reminiscent of “The Maltese Falcon”, a book extensively referenced throughout “All The Wrong Questions”.

BOOK INVENTORY

So, late last night scandalousnurse suggested we compare books and immathrowabrickatyou was curious what’s on my shelves too.  

So, I spent like two hours just now cataloging every book currently in my possession (not including stuff on my Kindle, or things that are in storage for safekeeping, i.e., sets of Dickens and Shakespeare published in the 1800s). 

So, here’s a list of all the books I currently own, organized by category and then alphabetized by author, because I work in a bookstore and that’s how we do things. 

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