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Publisher's Summary

So there I was, holed up in my office, trying to duck the bill collectors, when she walked in. She was the kind of sweet cookie that made your eyes water like you were hit with a 10-ton blackjack. She told me Raymond Chandler created the hard-boiled private eyes that rule American crime fiction, and this collection traces the genesis of Chandler's style in such stories as "Mandarin's Jade", "The Man Who Liked Dogs", and "Try the Girl".

Next, she pointed out that narrator Elliott Gould played Philip Marlowe in Robert Altman's version of The Long Goodbye. Then she left me, like a kid spitting out a wad of bubblegum, leaving me with that chewed-up feeling and an empty wallet. I guess it's a living.

"The Man Who Liked Dogs" and "Try the Girl" Copyright 1934, 1936 by Pro-Distributors Publishing Company; "Mandarin's Jade" Copyright 1937 by Popular Publications, Copyright ©1964 by Helga Greene Literary Agency, All Rights Reserved; Copyright (P)1996 by Dove Audio, Inc.

What members say

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Narrator problematic

Elliot Gould has great tone, but he utterly ruins this with his total failure to sense the proper pacing of the text.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
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Philip Marlowe stories without Philip Marlow.

All of the stories stood up by themselves. They were entertaining and I enjoyed all of them.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
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Seeds of Farewell, my Lovely

The collection are the stories that Farewell, my Lovely was stiched together from. Actually, if I hadn't read that first, this could have been a much better experience: the bleak atmosphere works all the same, but every storyline has a begininng, a middle and a decent ending. Elliott Gould is the perfect man for the job: although I knew most of the action, it was still worth listening to his interpretation.

Recommended only if you are a trule Raymond Chandler fan _or_ if you haven't read yet Farewell, my lovely.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • W
  • 10-06-14

Uggh -- OFFENSIVE -- Avoid if you can

Is there anything you would change about this book?

Even if you can ignore the ethnic and racial stereotypes and slurs and misogyny sprinkled casually throughout the text (and I could not), these are not Chandler's best stories.Certainly they conform to some noir template, but suspenseful or even intriguing they were not.These stories are products of their times -- times I in no way romanticize (though I suppose many who will choose to listen to these stories may). These stories are just too racist for me to enjoy them. N word (not to mention slurs against Japanese-Americans, Native Americans, Mexicans and so on) anyone? Beside just the mention of the words, Gould does stereotypical voices and dialogue -- cringeworthy. I was disappointed. I've read other books written at this time and while contemporary views about women and minorities aren't on display, nastiness isn't everywhere, as in this collection.

Has Mandarin's Jade and Other Stories turned you off from other books in this genre?

Nope. I just wish other reviewers had warned me.

Did Elliott Gould do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

Yes, again, if you can handle his "Me talk good. He make love to him squaw" portrayal of Chandler's vision of a Native American.I agree with another reviewer who says that Gould's pacing was off here, as well.

Could you see Mandarin's Jade and Other Stories being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

Nope, too dull.

Any additional comments?

A warning about the offensive material might be nice. Now I feel like I wasted my credit.

1 of 8 people found this review helpful