Dashiell Hammett is best known as both pioneer and master of American hard-boiled detective fiction, but these dozen and a half stories both affirm that reputation and present him in a different light. Along with the full-length screen treatments On the Make (which became the movie Mr. Dynamite, 1935) and The Kiss-Off (the basis for City Streets, starring Sylvia Sydney and Gary Cooper, 1931), this collection includes never before and rarely published stories that explore failed romance, courage in the face of uncertainty, hypocrisy, and crass opportunism.
Collected and edited by Hammett's granddaughter, Julie Rivett, and noted Hammett scholar and biographer Richard Layman, The Hunter and Other Stories is a trove of priceless literary gems from an American master storyteller.
Donna Postel reads the introduction, commentaries, and afterword; Ray Chase reads the sections "Crime" and "Screen Stories" and the appendix; Brian Holsopple reads the section "Men" and Stephen Bowlby reads the section "Men and Women."
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Not Just A Crime Writer
Oh, yes. I've read short story collections before, and this one has the best hit-to-dud ratio of them all. Personally, I think Hammett was one of the best writers of the 20th century. He could write immersive tales with moments that, as Chandler said, seem like they've never been written before.
He travels all over in this collection: there's a caper story, some slice-of-life fiction, even a fantasy tale. Given his prose, and his eye for detail, I'm sure almost anyone can find something here to like.
Some of the longer stories did, and in different ways. Some stories were less than ten minutes long, and couldn't build much suspense.
Nothing stood out; the narration was good all around.
Tough one. I'd have to go with the eccentric jewel thief in "The Diamond Wager"; he was fun.
The film treatments were pretty meh. They sound closer to Wikipedia articles than to actual stories. "On The Make" was cool, though.