• Raymond Chandler: The BBC Radio Drama Collection

  • By: Raymond Chandler
  • Narrated by: Toby Stephens
  • Length: 10 hrs and 34 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (364 ratings)
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Raymond Chandler: The BBC Radio Drama Collection  By  cover art

Raymond Chandler: The BBC Radio Drama Collection

By: Raymond Chandler
Narrated by: Toby Stephens
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Publisher's summary

The complete collection of landmark BBC Radio dramas of Raymond Chandler's Philip Marlowe mysteries.

Philip Marlowe is the archetypal noir detective: wisecracking and world weary, hard boiled yet honourable. This volume includes all eight dramatisations of Raymond Chandler's groundbreaking crime novels featuring his iconic hero.

The Big Sleep: Marlowe is consulted by a wealthy family man with two big problems: his children.

Farewell My Lovely: Marlowe's search for an ex-con's ex-girlfriend leads him into danger.

The High Window: when a rare gold coin is stolen from her collection, Mrs Murdoch hires Philip Marlowe to find it.

The Lady in the Lake: businessman Derace Kingsley hires Marlowe to find his estranged wife, Crystal.

The Little Sister: commissioned to find Orfamay Quest's missing brother, Marlowe is drawn into the glamorous film world of Hollywood.

The Long Goodbye: Marlowe befriends a drunk named Terry Lennox but comes to regret doing him a favour.

Playback: hired to follow the mysterious Betty Mayfield, Marlowe soon finds that he is being tailed, too.

Poodle Springs: newly married Marlowe puts his bride aside to look for a gambler on the run.

Starring Toby Stephens as Philip Marlowe, these stylish, suspenseful dramatisations - full of witty, ironic dialogue and colourful characters - bring the beautiful, corrupt world of California in the '40s and '50s to luminous life.

Duration: 11 hours approx.

©2016 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2016 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd

What listeners say about Raymond Chandler: The BBC Radio Drama Collection

Average customer ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Toby Stephens goes California Noir

This was a fun, easy listen except for the appalling acting from several of the female characters. They were annoying enough to knock off a star. I know most of the Marlowe femmes are hardly deeply nuanced, but some of these actresses need a remedial class or two. (Yes, to my ear, they are that bad).

Stephens carried the day, though, and I found his "California Noir" voice wonderfully surprising. He's always a first-rate performer, though, so I'd expect nothing less than brilliance from him, even portraying an American.

The story adaptations were well-written, faithful to the spirit of the originals.

Well worth a listen.

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25 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

classic noir detective story

Philip Marlow is the quintessential noir detective. He is the inspiration for the hard-boiled smartass rough necks that follows.
the mysteries found here are foggy and clouded and have the feel of a real mysteries being uncovered by the reader right along side Marlow.

fair warning, this was written in a very different time. it speaks ill off certain races and women at times. nothing completely and disgustingly offensive out right, but there is some of that in the text.

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14 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Happy

Glad to have all the novels dramatized together since the little sister wasn't available by itself. They're a little short but still fun.

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7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Classic Chandler - all the stories

This is a decent dramatization of a Raymond Chandlers works, including the post-mortem Poodle Springs written by Robert B Parker, creator of the Spencer detective series. It's good but I don't think Auntie Beeb excels when it comes to American accents. Still, it grows on you and by the end of the series I felt it was a good dramatization.

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6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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Very well done!

Would you listen to Raymond Chandler: The BBC Radio Drama Collection again? Why?

These are really great adaptations of Raymond Chandler's novels. Very well done! These are awesome. Very atmospheric with great acting and sound effects. HIGHLY recommended, especially if you are a fan of noir.

What other book might you compare Raymond Chandler: The BBC Radio Drama Collection to and why?

None. These are stand alone. These are, by far, the best adaptations I have ever heard of Raymond Chandler's Phillip Marlowe novels.

Which character – as performed by Toby Stephens – was your favorite?

Phillip Marlowe, of course

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Whole thing was great!

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5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Really well done!

I enjoy listening to this over and over again at bedtime. Very nostalgic and well done.

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4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

You either get Chandler or you don't.

This was a fun performance by a troop of actors.
Raymond Chandler is probably about as unpolitically correct as one can be and still not be offensive. He represents masculinity from a bygone era. If that offends, then this is not the book for you. But its fun. Chandler has a peculiar mastery of phrases.

Ask yourself this: did you like the Maltese Falcon? Casablanca?

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

You need to appreciate the wit...

I listened to these stories because I enjoyed the wonderful one liners bouncing off the walls. The stories were hollow but the writing very clever in the mouth of the hero detective. And I like Toby Stephen's portrayal of Marlowe most surprisingly of all. It is unbelievable how he was able to change his voice and accent to become a sexy American detective. When I hear him as an Englishman in other plays, he is no longer sexy to this American ear. It's like Royals can't sound like virile Cowboys. But Toby was tough in a very quiet way and although he could have shown a little more edginess, I liked him anyway. The males were generally good, the females mostly awful.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A classic radio drama

Great storyline and excellent cast, wish there were more chapters. For those who like the old time radio shows, a must listen

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A wonderful interpretation of classic noir

Where does Raymond Chandler: The BBC Radio Drama Collection rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This has become one of my favorites.

What other book might you compare Raymond Chandler: The BBC Radio Drama Collection to and why?

The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes because it revisits classic old time radio.

Which scene was your favorite?

I really can't choose just one. I loved the dramatizations of Raymond Chandler's works.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I enjoyed all of the stories.

Any additional comments?

A wonderful interpretation of old time radio noir classics. Not to be missed.

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1 person found this helpful