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Sam Spade is hired by the fragrant Miss Wonderley to track down her sister who has eloped with a louse called Floyd Thursby But Miss Wonderley is in fact the beautiful and treacherous Brigid O'Shaughnessy and when Spade's partner Miles Archer is shot while on Thursby's trail Spade finds himself both hunter and hunted can he track down the jewel encrusted bird a treasure worth killing for before the Fat Man finds him?


10 thoughts on “The Maltese Falcon

  1. says:

    Sam Spade doesn’t need to go looking for trouble trouble finds him I found an interesting hardbound version of this novel at a used bookstore and I couldn’t resist it Dashiell Hammett wrote this story originally as a serial in the magazine Black Mask It was eventually published as a novel in 1930 Dashiell Hammett was a major influence on the establishment of ‘hard boiled’ detective fiction and through film adaptations of his stories – film noir Humphrey Bogart played Sam Spade in the most famous adaptation of The Maltese Falcon in 1941 I had seen the film long ago and I remember enjoying it but to be honest I couldn’t remember the plot I really enjoyed the read as it’s as pure a ‘film noir’ hard boiled detective story as you get brimmed hats cigarettes guns and even opening with a femme fatale walking into the detective agency as the opening scene If you don't think it's culturally relevant just know that the prop statue from the 1941 film sold for 4 Million in 2013Hammett writes well – narration is largely just descriptions He keeps things simple but occasionally slips in clever little phrases such as“Spade put the cigarette in his mouth set fire to it and laughed smoke out”“She frowned at her knees”“She suirmed on her end of the settee and her eyes wavered between heavy lashes as if trying and failing to free their glaze from his”For the most part he just lets the story playout through the dialog and action of the characters Without any insight into their thoughts or motivation through narration we still get very distinct and rich characters Spade is determined cold and highly observant The feme fatale is devious manipulative and unreliable but still somehow alluring and enchanting That Hammett can create such distinctive characters through dialog and action is the sign of a great storyteller I flew through this storyA classic hard boiled detective novel that stands the test of time with excellent writing strong characters and an often copied but certainly entertaining plot


  2. says:

    Look out folkshere comes GREATNESS “When you’re slapped you’ll take it and like it” image error


  3. says:

    My top ten reasons why this Dashiell Hammett is one of the greatest crime novels ever written1 The Voice – Tough Crisp hardboiled – the story isn’t told in first person but certainly has the feel of first person since we are so close to Sam Spade it’s as if we’re peering over the detective’s shoulder from first to last page2 The City – The buildings and streets in San Francisco have such a tangible presence even today after nearly 100 years they still give Maltese Falcon tours 3 Femme Fatale – Brigid O’Shaughnessy is the femme fatale Her looks her way of speaking her cunning her charms her allurement– legions of writers of detective fiction have changed her name her home town color of her hair and eyes but all you have to do is scratch the surface and there she is4 Outside the Law – Nobody likes a cog in the legal wheel or a grey flannel flunkey following orders Sam Spade is anything but – an outsider to the police district attorney and even his clients Sammy is his own man cracking the case in his own way in his own time and even willing to get socked in the jaw by a police lieutenant or pulled in by a high ranking official to make it happen 5 Tone – Sharp and crisp If you read and look carefully an entire world is disclosed as for example “Spade emptied the unconscious man’s pockets one by one working methodically moving the lax body when necessary making a pile of the pockets’ contents on the desk When the last pocket had been turned out he returned to his own chair rolled and lighted a cigarette and began to examine his spoils He examined them with grave unhurried thoroughness” 6 Violence – Nothing juices the action in a detective fiction than cold bloody murder An entire string of murders are featured here all happening at the right time to accelerate tempo Also there’s a good amount of roughhouse with the least likely man in the novel Joel Cairo getting beat up every time he turns around Serves him right for thinking himself so refined and above it all 7 The Color of Character – Dashiell Hammett set the gold standard here for writers of detective fiction “The fat man was flabbily fat with bulbous pink cheeks and lips and chins and neck with a great soft egg of a belly that was all his torso and pendant cones for arms and legs As he advanced to meet Spade all his bulbs rose and shook and fell separately with such step in the manner of clustered soap bubbles not yet released from the pipe through which they had been blown His eyes made small by fat puffs around them where dark and sleek Dark ringlets thinly covered his broad scalp He wore a back cutaway coat black vest black satin Ascot tie holding a pinkish pearl striped grey worsted trousers and patent leather shoes His voice was a throaty purr” 8 The Moral Code – As one character finds out the hard way Sam Spade is a man of the high uncompromising character You will have to read the novel to find out just how high and just how uncompromising 9 The Whole is Greater than the Parts – The Maltese Falcon has that special something that separates it from other crime fiction even crime fiction of the first order What is it? Hard to put your finger on it but as millions of readers have discovered every time they pick it up this is one doozy of a classic 10 The Dingus – Ah yes the object of obsessive desire the bird with all those long lost jewels Has there ever been a famous actor closely connected with a famous object? And yes in many ways the much sought after black bird adds a uniue aesthetic dimension to this tale of noir


  4. says:

    Born in 1894 and serving as a sergeant in World War I Dashiell Hammett used his experiences to become one of the premier detective writers of the first half of the twentieth century Set in Depression Era San Francisco and introducing the world to Samuel Spade Hammett's The Maltese Falcon became a detective story that many in the genre still try to measure up to today A classic that helped change the way writers told detective stories The Maltese Falcon is a classic case that contains all the elements of a fun whodunit Drawing inspiration from his own life Hammett created Samuel Spade a private eye detective who saw action in Europe in World War I At the opening of this book Spade has taken on the services of a new client one Miss Bridget O'Shaughnessy who reuests protection from thugs who have tailed her around the globe Along with the assistance of his partner Miles Archer Spade takes the case; however Archer is uickly gunned down by one of the aforementioned thugs and the case spirals into action Spade is forced to work alone with only bit help from his secretary Effie Perrine and a classic whodunit ensues We find out that Spade has contacts all over San Francisco from his work as a private eye detective The police do not desire that a private detective encroaches on their work and the chief as well as the district attorney are out to get him for Archer's murder as far fetched as that sounds Underneath the murder and thugs is the root of the case a Maltese Falcon figurine estimated to be worth a million dollars In the depression era this was a large fortune and O'Shaughnessy hopes that Spade helps her procure the Falcon and deliver both her and it to safety before the thugs find them As this is detective noir O'Shaughnessy goes from client to lover and good to bad Each thug has at least one gun or pistol and goons seem to be hanging around each corner all as far fetched in character as the next Gutman the fat man and only one with brains in the group; Cairo the apparent boy loving Levantine; and Wilmer Gutman's hired kid and fall guy Each attempts to force Spade into a corner which of course he eventually gets his way out of The Maltese Falcon is a classic detective noir story and fun whodunit A depression era story where everyone wore a trench coat and hat and rolled their own cigarettes it is also a holdover from the 1920s gangster era which is becoming one of my favorite eras to read about A pulp noir story that became a movie starring Humphrey Bogart The Maltese Falcon is a classic detective tale in a genre that I am uickly starting to enjoy I rate The Maltese Falcon 45 and look forward to reading of Dashiell Hammett's detective cases


  5. says:

    I enjoyed Dashiell Hammett’s The Maltese Falcon I’d seen the movie; however this was my first read of Hammett’s iconic detective story There’s a lot of story to unravel the history of the Maltese Falcon statue being the most prominent here and lots of characters with their own motivations and shifting allegiances Hammett’s novel also introduces the no nonsense detective Sam Spade As such it is one of the precursors of hardboiled detective fiction often associated with noir fiction I’d often linked Hammett to Raymond Chandler and works such as The Big Sleep which introduced the detective Philip Marlowe Chandler’s work comes 10 years after The Maltese Falcon Although both works are about crime they are not essentially crime dramas For one finding who committed the crime is not the aim of the story At least part of the story is about the damaged and cynical detectives who do the investigating These were new kinds of stories which I think had a profound influence on the continuation of noir fiction in both detective fiction and other genres such as science fiction The grittiness and atmosphere laden scenes I associate with these early works finds its way into lots of science fiction some of which I’ve read like China Mieville’s The City the City and Philip K Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep titled Blade Runner in the film version and some like Jim Butcher’s The Dresden Files which I still need to read I guess that was something of a digression but I just wanted to stress The Maltese Falcon as a forerunner of literature that’s still being written


  6. says:

    2012 re readSam Spade's partner is murdered and Sam is determined to find his killer But what does Miles Archer's murder have to do with the client he was working for or the mysterious Maltese Falcon?What can I say about one of the Big Two pulp detective novels the other being The Big Sleep? Well let's seeThe Maltese Falcon embodies a lot of what made pulp detective fiction great leading to hordes of imitators You've got the wise cracking detective who has a way with the ladies gunplay deceit sex and murder Throw in an elusive macguffin and you have a blueprint a lot of writers have been following for over three uarters of a centurySam Spade that blonde Satan is the father of many detectives that came him In fact it would be interesting to see whether he or Raymond Chandler has bastard detective descendents The plot the Maltese Falcon is fairly simple Somebody has the Maltese Falcon and everyone seems to think Sam Spade knows where it is Miles Archer's murder complicates things a bit but really isn't much than a bump in the road until his killer is revealedThe bad guys and supporting cast are an interesting bunch Brigid O'Shaughnessy lays the groundwork for a lot of femme fatales to come Gutman Cairo and Wilmer are than just stock characters The cops were a little light on personality but they were mostly in the story to hassle Spade so that's not such of a big dealHammett's prose drives the plot along but lacks the poetry of Raymond Chandler's Seventeen years after I read The Maltese Falcon for the first time I have of an appreciation for Hammett's spare style The plot keeps moving forward without a single misstep It's only 200 ish pages but by the end it feels like the perfect length for such a taleAny complaints? Not as such Modern readers will probably not like the book's treatment of women but it was written in the late 1920's so it has to be given a bit of slack Honestly my only complaints are that there aren't any Sam Spade books and that Dashielle Hammett wasn't Raymond ChandlerFor a parting thought this line of dialogue nicely sums up Sam Spade's characterWhen a man's partner is killed he's supposed to do something about it It doesn't make any difference what you thought of him


  7. says:

    Sam Spade a cynical tough yet honest San Francisco private eye is having a good day Miss Wonderly later Leblanc and still later Brigid O'Shaughnessy what's in a name a rose by any other name would be confusing comes into his office All sophisticated charm and beauty so she lies a little who doesn't important gives Sam and his disliked partner Miles Archer 200 for a job they could use some cash like most people during hard times Miss WonLeb O'Shaughnessy her name slips from one to the other no big deal this happens often in the sleazy business recites a dubious story of a runaway younger sister accompanied by the mysterious Floyd Thursby Effie Perine his loyal secretary tells Sam her woman's intuition says O'Shaugnessy is good you can trust not uite Miles agrees to shadow Thursby; the couple has just arrived in town it will be Archer's last assignment He is soon found dead in a dark lonely street why And the culprit who killed him this butcher must be found uickly a strange case to solve if possible there are things which remain unknown however afterwards Thursby is also rubbed out this occurs freuently in these type of books for obvious reasons Suspicion falls on Spaderevenge for Thursby shooting his partner maybe or his affair with Archer's wife the cause That's what two inflexible police detectives are investigating the effeminate Joel Cairo comes to Sam 's office and tells him about the Maltese Falcon a priceless blackbird statuette from the Middle Ages with a bloody past numerous deaths induced by those wanting possesion of the item Joel offers him a lot of money for its recovery a proposition the detective can't refuse Casper Gutman for once a name which discribes him perfectly the leader of a gang of greedy thieves with a small weight problem is Cairo's secret boss In addition there's the unimpressive Wilmer Cook the murderous kid gunman he enjoys his vocation the weapon makes him feel big After La Paloma a ship from Hong Kong docks in San Francisco Jacobi the captain goes to Sam's office an unusually busy place and expires on the floor with four bullet holes in him the understandable reason But not before giving the shamus a packagecan it possibly be the long sought Maltese Falcon? This superb mystery from long ago still brings in the readers and will always do that


  8. says:

    Everything seemed separated for the first sixty pages with no connection whatsoever But the story was full of suspense and unfolded with many surprises after that The plot was very captivating and seemed very realistic The main thread is 'Maltese Falcon' I'm not going to tell you what it is as it would be a spoiler and I hate to give spoilers around which everything revolves Its a good read and keeps you guessing till the lastHighly recommend


  9. says:

    The Maltese Falcon Dashiell HammettThe Maltese Falcon is a 1930 detective novel by American writer Dashiell Hammett originally serialized in the magazine Black Mask beginning with the September 1929 issue ‘Sam’ Spade is a private detective in San Francisco in partnership with Miles Archer The beautiful Miss Wonderly hires them to follow Floyd Thursby who has run off with her sister Archer takes the first stint but is found shot dead that night Thursby is also killed later and Spade is a suspect The next morning Spade coolly tells his office secretary Effie Perine to have the office door repainted to read simply Samuel SpadeMiss Wonderly is soon revealed to be an acuisitive adventuress named Brigid O'Shaughnessy involved in the search for a black statuette of unknown but substantial value Others are after this falcon including Joel Cairo an effeminate Levantine homosexual and Casper Gutman a fat man accompanied by a vicious young gunman Wilmer Cook O'Shaughnessy begs for Spade's protection while telling him as little as possible They meet with Cairo at Spade's apartment and then Spade again presses O'Shaughnessy for details; again she stalls but instead kisses Spade The next morning she is asleep in his bed Leaving her there Spade slips out to search her apartment Effie believes O'Shaughnessy is all right and Spade should help her Effie agrees to hide her at her own home but O'Shaughnessy disappears again When Spade meets Gutman in his hotel room neither of them will tell what he knows Spade implies he is looking out for himself not O'Shaughnessy Red herrings abound The police suspect Spade in the shootings because he was bedding Archer's wife Iva The District Attorney ties the shootings to Dixie Monahan a Chicago gambler who had employed Thursby as a bodyguard in the Far East تاریخ نخستین خوانش سال 1999 میلادیعنوان شاهین مالت؛ دشیل هامت هَمِت؛ مترجم حسن زیادلو؛ تهران هزارافسان‏‫، 1377؛ در 272ص، چاپ دیگر 1388؛ در 291ص؛ شابک 9789644174600؛‭‬‬عنوان شاهین مالت؛ نویسنده داشیل دشیل همت؛ مترجم پرویز نصیری؛ تهران روزنه کار، ‏‫1393؛ در 272ص؛ شابک 9789646728080؛‬ نخستین بار این داستان به صورت دنباله‌ دار در مجله ی «بلک مسک» از شماره سپتامبر سال 1929 میلادی منتشر شد داستان به صورت سوم شخص بیرونی روایت می‌شود، و از احساسات و افکار شخصیت‌ها چیزی گفته نمی‌شود شخصیت اصلی رمان «سم اسپید» است، فیلم «شاهین مالت 1941میلادی» اقتباسی از همین رمان استشاهین مالت دربارهٔ یک کارآگاه خصوصی‌ ست که در پیگیری پرونده‌ ای، با سه مجرم عجیب و غریب روبرو می‌شود، که میخواهند مجسمه‌ ای گرانقیمت را به دست آورندنخست زنی که خود را خانم واندرلی معرفی میکند، وارد دفتر کار سم اسپید می‌شود و جریان دروغی از ربوده شدن خواهرش توسط فردی به نام «ترزبی» را گزارش می‌کند؛ مایلز شریک کاری «سم اسپید» به دنبال «ترزبی» می‌رود و در تاریکی شب کشته می‌شود؛ پلیس «سم اسپید» را مورد بازجویی قرار می‌دهد، و اسپید مجبور می‌شود جهت رفع اتهام از خود، قاتل را کت بسته تحویل پلیس بدهد؛ وی سپس متوجه می‌شود که داستان خانم «واندرلی» دروغین بوده، و نام اصلی وی «بریجیت اوشانتی» و دارای چندین همدست یک مرد چاق بنام «گاتمن، و یک مرد کوچک اندام به نام کایرو، می‌باشد که به اتفاق در پی به چنگ آوردن شاهین هستند؛ «گاتمن» و «کایرو» کوشش می‌کنند با «اسپید» گفتگو کنند اما میفهمند که «شاهین» دست او نیست، و خودشان می‌توانند آن را بدست آورند، به او کلک میزنند و برای به دست آوردن شاهین به بندر میروند، ویلمر که آدمکش گاتمن است، ناخدا جاکوبی که حامل شاهین است را مجروح می‌کند، اما وی در حالیکه زخمی است شاهین را به دست منشی «سم اسپید» می‌رساند و ؛ تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 22031399هجری خورشیدی ا شربیانی


  10. says:

    Welcome to Spade and Archer detective agency One day a gorgeous woman came in asking to help tracking her sister who ran away with a bad guy The down payment was good so the detectives took the case no uestions asked As the direct result one of the detectives Sam Spade got to experience all of the traditional noir fun while readers follow ever twisting plot I said it countless times before and I will say it again Sam Spade is the grandfather of all PIs in all noir in particular all Californian PIs Raymond Chandler's Philip Marlowe included Dashiell Hammett created the genre and most of its tropes Speaking about them this was my reread of the book and this time I was trying to count them as they appear For those doubting Hammett's paternity of noir I can say the following I found them all in here I might miss something but every single major trope is present Does it show its age? Yes a little Is it still fun to read? You bet it is In fact this book along with Red Harvest by the same author is responsible for my love of noir just like in several generations of readers before me It is most probably a safe bet to say that Sam Spade made Philip Marlowe possible While Hammett's prose is not as stylish as Chandler's nobody's prose is it is still uite good and does not feel antiue My rating is 4 stars exactly the same as it was during my first read; recommended to any noir fan just for historical value if nothing else