The Long Goodbye : Philip Marlowe

  • by Raymond Chandler
  • Narrated by Ray Porter
  • Series: Philip Marlowe
  • 11 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Down-and-out drunk Terry Lennox has a problem: his millionaire wife is dead and he needs to get out of LA fast. So he turns to his only friend in the world: Philip Marlowe, Private Investigator. He's willing to help a man down on his luck, but later, Lennox commits suicide in Mexico and things start to turn nasty.
Marlowe finds himself drawn into a sordid crowd of adulterers and alcoholics in LA's Idle Valley, where the rich are suffering one big suntanned hangover. Marlowe is sure Lennox didn't kill his wife, but how many more stiffs will turn up before he gets to the truth?
Raymond Chandler was born in Chicago in 1888 and moved to England with his family when he was twelve. He attended Dulwich College, Alma Mater to some of the twentieth century’s most renowned writers. Returning to America in 1912, he settled in California, worked in a number of jobs, and later married. It was during the Depression era that he seriously turned his hand to writing and his first published story appeared in the pulp magazine Black Mask in 1933, followed six years later by his first novel.
The Big Sleep introduced the world to Philip Marlowe, the often imitated but never-bettered hard-boiled private investigator. It is in Marlowe’s long shadow that every fictional detective must stand – and under the influence of Raymond Chandler’s addictive prose that every crime author must write.

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What the Critics Say

"Anything Chandler writes about grips the mind from the first sentence." (Daily Telegraph)
"One of the greatest crime writers, who set standards others still try to attain" (Sunday Times)
"Chandler is an original stylist, creator of a character as immortal as Sherlock Holmes." (Anthony Burgess)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

I first read The Long Goodbye over 50 years ago

Raymond Chandler was one of my favorite authors when I was a young man. Reading the book again after so long is fascinating and fun. In retrospect it now seems that the Phillip Marlowe crime mysteries all followed a formula; reading one was similar to reading all. I'm less enthralled with The Long Goodbye than I was when I first read it, but it is still excellent crime fiction.

There have been some reviews here that have been critical of Ray Porter, the narrator. I disagree! Porter, I believe, narrated the book just as Chandler would have wanted. The book is written in Marlowe's first person. Porter uses the voice that I imagine Marlowe would have had.

Comparing Chandler to modern crime fiction writers is difficult. Michael Connelly and his Harry Bosch character come to mind, but that is probably because Bosch and Marlowe cover the same geographic territory.
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- Wayne

Both the burn and the bush

Labels like genius and masterpiece get thrown around a lot in the arts. Certain writers are deemed to be brilliant and yet their stars fade quickly. Their notable books are soon forgotten, misplaced, unread and eventually pulped. Other writers seem to have the opposite trajectory. They are viewed as pulp or genre writers, but over time they seem to transcend the genre and even seem to dance on the graves of labels. They are iconic. Raymond Chandler is one of those later writers.

He is one of the Holy Trinity of detective novelists (along with Dashiell Hammett and James M. Cain). These are the men who built the hard-boiled noir house that everyone else lives in. He is a god and a poet. His dialogue seems to have just fallen directly from the swollen lips of a trash-talking demiurge. His novels are both the burn and the bush. His prose is both the wilderness and the mountain. He can kill-off the Alpha and seduce the Omega before you recognize your own face in the cracked mirror.

I can't think of a modern writer of detective or crime fiction that shouldn't be paying Chander's heirs some form of rent. I can't imagine a writer who wants to include a gun and a woman and a detective in a novel NOT consulting Chandler's novels for hints of inspiration. Obviously, I adore the genre and the writer, but even if I work hard to remove my own biases it is difficult to walk away from 'The Long Goodbye' without recognizing what a gift was thrown at our underserving, flat feet.
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- Darwin8u

Book Details

  • Release Date: 12-09-2014
  • Publisher: Audible Studios