Thursday, July 26, 2018

The Improbable Afterlife of Philip Marlowe

In connection with both the release last week of The Annotated Big Sleep (Vintage Crime/Black Lizard) and this week’s debut of Lawrence Osborne’s Philip Marlowe novel, Only to Sleep (Hogarth), the Web site CrimeReads has been making the most of Raymond Chandler and his famous fictional private eye. All of the pieces are worth checking out if, like me, you’re a Chandler fan.

The World of Raymond Chandler and The Big Sleep” is an adaptation of the introduction to The Annotated Big Sleep, by Owen Hill, Pamela Jackson, and Anthony Dean Rizzuto. In “How to Write Like Chandler Without Becoming a Cliché,” Hill offers some “tips for aspiring crime writers enthralled by the [crime-fiction] classics.” And if you’re curious to see how The Big Sleep has been artistically presented by publishers around the world since its initial appearance in 1939, take a scroll through this gallery of 25 mostly paperback book covers.

Since this week brought the 130th anniversary of Chandler’s birth (he took his first breaths in Chicago on July 23, 1888), CrimeReads continues it celebration with a piece I contributed, titled “The Many Faces of Philip Marlowe.” It’s an examination of eight books, all published since Chandler’s demise back in 1959, that feature Marlowe or the author himself, but—like Osborne’s Only to Sleep—were penned by wordsmiths other than Chandler. It was great fun visiting or revisiting those works in order to write about them.

READ MORE:The Big Seep,” by Megan Abbott (Slate); “Marlowe Never Sleeps,” by Clay and Susan Griffith (; “Sleep Covers Worth Waking Up For,” by J. Kingston Pierce (Killer Covers); “The Man Who Would Be Marlowe,” by J. Kingston Pierce (The Rap Sheet).

No comments: