The Maltese Falcon – Review

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The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammet
Age: Adult
Genre: Mystery

One of the original noir detective mysteries, the Maltese Falcon is a story about San Francisco detective Sam Spade and his partner Miles Archer. On a typical day at work, a young lady enters into the offices of Spade and Archer to ask for help bringing her runaway sister back home. What soon ensues is a tangle of lies, and deception that suck Sam Spade into a chain reaction of murder, greed and lust.

My first experience with Dashiell Hammett was The Thin Man, set in New York. I absolutely adored The Thin Man and was looking forward to reading The Maltese Falcon, particularly because the book is set in San Francisco. That being said, I was slightly let down by The Maltese Falcon. I did not find Sam Spade to be near as endearing as Nick Charles and I don’t think he was meant to be. Spade lied, he cheated, and he took advantage of women just to further his case. I didn’t connect with the characters at all and that took away from the book. Nearly all of the characters were terrible people who did terrible things for their own personal benefit, except for Spade’s secretary.  In typical Hammett form, there was plenty of witty rapport between the characters which this book a quick read. Since this wasn’t a who-dun-it type of mystery, there weren’t too many plot twists. I did like the story itself and the back story for the much searched for Maltese Falcon. I loved that it was set in San Francisco and for other local Hammett fans, there is a weekly Dashiell Hammett tour in SF, tracing all the sites mentioned in the book.

The Maltese Falcon
By Dashiell Hammett
Vintage Books, 1929
ISBN 0394717724
229 pages
Book 17 of 2011
 
 
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Find this book at your local library
The Maltese falcon
 
 
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One response to “The Maltese Falcon – Review

  1. I love vintage noir like this – or any other classic detective novel. My favourite is Chandler’s The Big Sleep because of the sheer quality of the writing. Just the business!

    (Responding to your message on the BookBlogs follow thread – I will follow you on facebook.)

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