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The High Window Paperback – Jul 12 1988

4.2 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Crime/Black Lizard; Reprint edition (July 12 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0394758269
  • ISBN-13: 978-0394758268
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.5 x 20.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 272 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #8,779 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Library Journal

Chandler is not only the best writer of hardboiled PI stories, he's one of the 20th century's top scribes, period. His full canon of novels and short stories is reprinted in trade paper featuring uniform covers in Black Lizard's signature style. A handsome set for a reasonable price.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.


"Raymond Chandler is a master." --The New York Times

“[Chandler] wrote as if pain hurt and life mattered.” --The New Yorker

“Chandler seems to have created the culminating American hero: wised up, hopeful, thoughtful, adventurous, sentimental, cynical and rebellious.” --Robert B. Parker, The New York Times Book Review

“Philip Marlowe remains the quintessential urban private eye.” --Los Angeles Times

“Nobody can write like Chandler on his home turf, not even Faulkner. . . . An original. . . . A great artist.” —The Boston Book Review

“Raymond Chandler was one of the finest prose writers of the twentieth century. . . . Age does not wither Chandler’s prose. . . . He wrote like an angel.” --Literary Review

“[T]he prose rises to heights of unselfconscious eloquence, and we realize with a jolt of excitement that we are in the presence of not a mere action tale teller, but a stylist, a writer with a vision.” --Joyce Carol Oates, The New York Review of Books

“Chandler wrote like a slumming angel and invested the sun-blinded streets of Los Angeles with a romantic presence.” —Ross Macdonald

“Raymond Chandler is a star of the first magnitude.” --Erle Stanley Gardner

“Raymond Chandler invented a new way of talking about America, and America has never looked the same to us since.” --Paul Auster

“[Chandler]’s the perfect novelist for our times. He takes us into a different world, a world that’s like ours, but isn’t. ” --Carolyn See

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The High Window is a fast paced, intricately plotted story inhabited by an abundance of interesting and colorful characters.
Once again, Raymond Chandler has succeeded in painting very vivid pictures of the various locales depicted with his unique brand of highly descriptive prose. A relatively short novel, The High Window is packed with page after page of interesting twists and turns, memorable characters and sharp dialogue.
Hard-boiled detective Philip Marlowe is, as always, hard drinking, wise cracking and supremely self confident. A walking, breathing paradox, he adheres to a very high minded code of honor when it comes to protecting client confidentiality yet is not above tampering with evidence.
What starts off as a rather mundane search for a missing rare coin rapidly expands to include multiple murder, blackmail and psychological abuse. This novel should appeal to all fans of detective fiction as well as to those who appreciate good writing regardless of subject matter.
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Format: Paperback
Raymond Chandler's "The High Window" is catchy; far more so than any similar novel penned by Mickey Spillane or James M. Cain. It has all the noirish elements needed to be a great read: a rare coin is the perfect MacGuffin; a sultry, adulterous blonde provides the jaded sexual appeal; an emotionally-abused young lady is the damsel in distress; a psychotic villain is flawlessly despicable and the labyrinthine plot is well-nigh impossible to predict until the very last page.
The above having been said, this well-written novel is not without its faults. My three qualms lie with what essentially was the waste of a spectacular character (Eddie Prue), the retread of "The Big Sleep" formula and the lack of suspense.
Addressing the first qualm, a subtle tension builds between the one-eyed Eddie Prue -- an emotionless bagman -- and wise-cracking Marlowe for the latter half of the novel. This mounting tension is left entirely unresolved and, thus, is dissatisfying.
The second qualm is that the Mrs. Murdock character seems to be carbon copy of General Sternwood from "The Big Sleep." They share far too many characteristics: a very wealthy recluse, physically disabled, world-wearily disillusioned, hampered by ailments, grim outlook, wayward offspring, etc. It seems that Chandler could have fleshed her character's uniqueness out just a tad more.
Lastly, the lack of suspense throughout the novel may bore the casual reader. If it was not for Chandler's lively prose, I would have nodded off. The only time in which I was worried as to Marlowe's well-being was when he first hears Prue's voice in a very well-written piece.
Despite these trivial flaws, it is a first rate novel and well-worth picking up.
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Format: Paperback
In Chandler's third novel, Philip Marlowe is hitting his stride. He's getting his life under control, he's right on top of the bad guys, and his honorable intentions save the day.
In this outing, Chandler is hired by a rich woman to track down a missing coin. The woman assumes that a misbehaving family member has run off with it, but of course the story ends up far more complex than that and Marlowe wends his way through gritty LA streets in search of the truth.
Marlowe's penchant for doing the right thing is even more in evidence here, as he works to help out characters that many times don't realize they need help. He does it not for fame or fortune, but because it's the right thing to do.
Chandler's writing style shines with its usual brilliance, and he crafts his characters with an easy hand. He has brought Marlowe along from his initial hard-drinking despair into a detective who - buoyed with past successes - is now more comfortable with himself and taking better care of himself. The wit crackles, and the novel is as enjoyable and entertaining as anything Chandler has written.
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Format: Paperback
In this one, Marlowe seems to have gotten a lot smarter than he was in FAREWELL, MY LOVELY, a novel in which he was so drunk most of the time that you had to wonder how he managed to survive, let alone adequately "investigate" anything. But in THE HIGH WINDOW, Marlowe is on the ball. He takes a job for a wealthy, twice-widowed matron, to track down her missing daughter-in-law who, the matron believes, absconded with a precious gold coin from her deceased second husband's collection. The widow's son, abandoned husband of the missing woman, is in the dark and wants to know what gives. He chases Marlowe, as does another detective who is apparently on another, related case. Marlowe out-slicks these guys, along with a semi-tough actor-turned-gangster and his menacing bodyguard, managing to figure out what it's all about, with the murders piling up and the cops breathing down his neck. He even uncovers a murder he wasn't supposed to and proves his good-heartedness in the process by straightening out a very unhealthy family situation. Although he continues to down his liquor as he pushes through the mires of this case, it feels more like social drinking this time, rather than the obsessively self-destructive bingeing seen in the earlier novel. In fact, though Marlowe's employer may be dissatisfied with the result of the investigation she has initiated in a moment of pique, we are not, for he solves the crime he was called in for and sets things that have been very much askew to rights in a most un-Marlowe like manner, leaving matters better than he found them, despite three murders and a darkly tangled familial history. -- SWM
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