Monday, January 16, 2012

The Maltese Falcon, Dashiell Hammett

This is a famous detective novel, first published in 1929. It was later made into a film with Humphrey Bogart playing Sam Spade, the hard-boiled private detective.  It deals with the mysterious, much-coveted "maltese falcon," which is supposedly encased in black enamel. Underneath, however, it is jewel-encrusted, thus making it extremely valuable. This is an exciting mystery story, full of unexpected twists and turns. You're never quite sure who the murderer is until the very end. Another thing that I liked about it is that it's not just a murder mystery; the main mystery is where the falcon is, and who's got it, as well as who committed the  murders.  Three people are murdered all told. I also like the character of Sam Spade. He's calm, cool, and collected and does not get flustered at any point in the book, even when he's being drugged or stood up with a gun. I hope to read The Thin Man sometime, another one of Dashiell Hammett's mysteries. There was also a movie made of that one too. 217 pages, 4.5 stars.

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