[Reviews] The Thin ManA breezy sort of detective story that makes me wish Hammett explored these characters in additional novels.
[Reviews] The Glass KeyTakes Hammett's usual focus on murder and mixes it with a dash of political corruption, with mixed results.
A twisting series of misadventures that together might just reveal a terrifying secret.
"The Dain Curse" is, from what I can tell, the second novel written by Dashiell Hammett, who I believe also wrote only two books about his fictional Continental detective agency. This one is the pseudo-sequel to his first novel, "Red Harvest," which felt enough different that I wasn't sure it even featured the same protagonist until very nearly the end.
There's a reason books like this one helped make the hard-boiled detective subgenre a thing. Don't miss it!
Somehow, I managed to reach my mid-30s without knowing about Dashiell Hammett, the classic American writer who many credit with creating the "hard-boiled detective" subgenre. He is famous for writing "The Maltese Falcon," a book I had heard referenced because it was apparently made into a popular movie, but that was his third novel. To see the first novel he ever produced, one must go further back, to "Red Harvest."
A few good laughs and some high stakes make for a better adventure than usual for this aging series.
I wish that I could read a new Stephanie Plum story and enjoy it as effortlessly as I did the early installments, but those days are long gone. Instead, I can typically expect a good story that amuses me but also leaves me wishing for better. "Top Secret Twenty-One," a recent installment in the series, lived up to lowered expectations.
Stephanie Plum's holding pattern has perhaps never been less charming, or less substantial.
"Takedown Twenty," the twentieth installment in Janet Evanovich's popular series about bounty hunter Stephanie Plum, does very little that its predecessors did not, and does none of what it does as well as those same predecessors did.
                                                            
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