Farewell, My Lovely
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Farewell, My Lovely (Philip Marlowe #2)

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  14,767 ratings  ·  623 reviews
Marlowe's about to give up on a completely routine case when he finds himself in the wrong place at the right time to get caught up in a murder that leads to a ring of jewel thieves, another murder, a fortune-teller, a couple more murders, and more corruption than your average graveyard.
Paperback, 292 pages
Published August 1992 by Vintage (first published 1940)
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The Big Sleep by Raymond ChandlerThe Maltese Falcon by Dashiell HammettThe Long Goodbye by Raymond ChandlerFarewell, My Lovely by Raymond ChandlerThe Postman Always Rings Twice by James M. Cain
Best Noir
4th out of 417 books — 438 voters
The Big Sleep by Raymond ChandlerFarewell, My Lovely by Raymond ChandlerThe Maltese Falcon by Dashiell HammettThe Best of H.P. Lovecraft by H.P. LovecraftTarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs
Best of the Pulp Magazine Authors and Literature
2nd out of 311 books — 132 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Stephen
Definitely my favorite Chandler, beating out The Big Sleep by a star and more than a dozen memorable lines. This book is absolutely soaking in quotables and may have the best prose of any noir I’ve ever read. Add in a classic main character and a solid plot and you have a nice shiny bundle of win.

PHILIP MARLOWE:

Chandler’s iconic PI is an arrogant alcoholic who fails every PC test you can formulate. He’s racist (from what I recall he insults African-Americans, Japanese and Native Americans and m...more
Dan Schwent
Philip Marlowe is looking for a woman's missing husband when he encounters Moose Malloy, a brute fresh out of prison, looking for his lost love Velma. Moose kills a man and Marlowe gets corralled into looking for the missing Velma. In the mean time, Marlowe gets another gig as a bodyguard and soon winds up with a corpse for a client. Will Marlowe find Velma and get to the bottom of things?

As I've said before, noir fiction and I go together like chronic constipation and heroin addiction. Farewell...more
Kemper
Phillip Marlowe is one of the most famous and influential characters in detective fiction. He’s also a racist alcoholic, and after all the blows to the head he routinely takes, he’s almost certainly suffering from post-concussion syndrome so you gotta question his judgment.

But he’s also the guy that says things like this:

"It was a blonde. A blonde to make a bishop kick a hole in a stained-glass window."

And this:

"He looked about as inconspicuous as a tarantula on a slice of angel food cake."

And t...more
Brandon
“I needed a drink, I needed a lot of life insurance. I needed a vacation, I needed a home in the country. What I had was a coat, a hat and a gun. I put them on and went out of the room.”

While working a missing persons case, Detective Philip Marlowe finds himself drawn into a murder investigation. Jailbird Moose Malloy knocks off the proprietor of a local watering hole in his pursuit of a gal named Velma. While assisting the cops in hunting him down, Marlowe backs off the case when he realizes he...more
Emily
Jun 05, 2007 Emily rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
I wish I had Lauren Bacall's looks and a mouth as salty as Phillip Marlowe's. The characters are such great throw backs to the days when men were Men and women were Dames. Chandler's writing is amazingly rich for this genre and the plot lines are just convoluted enough to keep you guessing. Phillip Marlowe is a great faceted character which contrasts nicely against the one-dimensional villains, cops and women who populate the stories. If authors like Sue Grafton are the gummi bears of the genre...more
K.D. Absolutely
Oct 18, 2012 K.D. Absolutely rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to K.D. by: 501 Must Read Books (Thriller)
It took me awhile before I was able to grasp what the story was all about. I was expecting this to be a noir but basically it was a like a Sherlock Holmes short story expanded to a novel. And for that reason, despite my failed expectation, I liked this book.

The language is quite old. This is because the setting is in Los Angeles during the 20's and the characters belong to the city's dark underworld, i.e., nightlife, crimes, drugs, murder. Racial discrimination is still rampant. The murder of a...more
Nancy Oakes
After reading two of his novels now, I'm beginning to like Raymond Chandler much more for his writing than for his plots. For anyone who thinks crime fiction has no place in the literary world, the Marlowe novels might make you change your mind. Chandler's an amazing writer when it comes to social commentary, the similes, metaphors and the sharp, electric prose he's famous for, and of course, his superb depiction of the city of angels of the 1940s that is so lifelike you almost feel that you're...more
Krok Zero
THIS BOOK IS ABOUT A DETECTIVE HE IS GETTING BEAT UP A LOT
Nikki
Raymond Chandler's writing remains the absolute best thing about this book. It lends a lot of character to Philip Marlowe who, in the hands of another writer, wouldn't be nearly so interesting. It's funny reading Chandler and realising that a lot of books I've read before were influenced by him. There's racism and misogyny and it's kind of like a time capsule from times and places I'll never see, but what I read it for is the writing style: the crisp images, the lack of cliche, the precise choic...more
Mark
Chandler is simply a joy to read. He’s the standard to which all other crime fiction writers are held. He’s a good model for all writers, if you ask me. If you don’t like it, you don’t like the genre. Every page is brimming with mood, setting and great dialogue. I like how he carefully describes each character as they are introduced, and he paints each scene remarkably well. I once told my kids that a great book can conjure up such vivid images in your head that it’s as if you’re watching a movi...more
Aubrey
Not as good as The Long Goodbye; it did a very good job as a hardboiled detective story, but didn't do much else. It is a very well-crafted crime novel with an amazing plot, and Philip Marlowe was as beautifully cunning and resourceful as he always is. Unfortunately, I am too easily wearied by mystery plots and characters who are never off their game. I enjoyed all of Marlowe's banter, but really, it gets boring when he's all 'oh I know exactly what I'm doing all the time aren't I amazing' and d...more
Rauf
The main story was this: Moose Malloy was looking for the girl he loved, Velma. In the penultimate chapter he found her. But things didn't go well at the reunion. In between? Oh there was a fake psychic. Dirty cops. A crooked shrink. And a few murders being done.

If you were not a fan of those type of stories, this book is worth a try because it had these lines:

The voice of the hot dog merchant split the dusk like an axe.

I like smooth shiny girls, hardboiled and loaded with sin.

I thought his pea...more
Joe Barlow
Raymond Chandler's second novel, the highly regarded follow-up to The Big Sleep, continues the adventures of world-weary private investigator Philip Marlowe and his best friend, booze.

As much as I loved Marlowe's first adventure (bewildering as the plot might have been), Farewell, My Lovely is a slightly tougher book to adore. Although Chandler's gifts for description and characterization are just as sharp as they were the first time, Marlowe himself is less fun to spend time with. He's become...more
Tripp
Chandler has this wonderful way of tossing seemingly unrelated incidents or even cases in Marlowe's path and slowly showing his tenacious detective find the links and connections between those incidents, like an island chain that, deep on the ocean floor, is really all part of the same land mass.

The first incident happens right away, when Marlowe accidentally crosses paths with a guy named Malloy who's just out of prison after eight years and is looking for a woman named Velma, a singer he's sti...more
Kelly
Just started this one, but had to note this quote, "...the voice dragged itself out of her throat like a sick man getting out of bed." Who wouldn't enjoy reading a book with such specific and magnificent description! :) Had to note another doozie of a quote, "She's a charming middle-aged lady with a face like a bucket of mud and if she has washed her hair since Coolidge's second term, I'll eat my spare tire, rim and all."
More when I finish...

I love Philip Marlowe! He is just the right mix of har...more
Melissa
I've been searching my whole life for a private detective whose ". . . method of approach is soothin' to a man's dignity" and I believe I may have found him. Although we aren't madly in love yet, our relationship is off to a pretty swell start. I had a hard time with finishing this book. There was too much going on & too many weird anachronisms - for example, you say, "You're a nice lad. Dartmouth or Dannemora?" and suddenly tough guys become your friends - what is that about? I took a break...more
Martha
I think I would rather read this than listen to it. My mind wandered some during this & I was backing up more than usual. I love audiobooks for traveling & working in the kitchen, but most of all, I love an actual book!
It's been a few days since I read this (listened to it). Elliot Gould was the narrator & while I love his voice, he did not change it for the various characters so at times I wasn't sure who was talking. That might have been easier to figure out if I had been reading...more
Penny
I must read fifty books for every one I get around to even listing on goodreads. I'm not very consistent. Read several Chandler stories from the library some months ago. I found him fascinating. I obsessed a bit too much on (1) did people really say things like that, or did Chandler make that up? (2) What was the plot again?

Many things happen to the lonely, very lonely detective Marlowe. Poor guy.

But his (Chandler's) stories have a deliciously eccentric feel to them, as much as Chandler's own l...more
Alberto
With this one I absolutely fell in love with Chandler's style. He is king of kings. I'm glad I didn't read him some 30 years ago when I read Hammett or Woolrich, since I couldn't read english at that time, and I think his style is untranslatable. (Actually, I'm realizing now that most if not every single crime novel written in english has been awfully translated to spanish).
God had me waiting for the moment when I could read him in his original unadulterated form.
Beth
It was a warm day, almost the end of March, and I stood outside the barbershop looking up at the jutting neon sign of a second floor dine and dice emporium called Florian's. A man was looking up at the sign too. He was looking up at the dusty windows with a sort of ecstatic fixity of expression, like a hunky immigrant catching his first sight of the Statue of Liberty. He was a big man but not more than six feet five inches tall and not wider than a beer truck. He was about ten feet away from me....more
Joe
Perversely, the strenghts of this novel may have inspired a movie I heartily dislike: A 1975 rendition starring Robert Mitchum. I found it to be a sappy, fawning ode to the "Golden Age" of Hollywood featuring an actor better suited to appeal to fans of that "Golden Age" than to readers of Chandler's actual detective, Philip Marlowe. I understand how this could have happened. If any of Chandler's novels succeeded in capturing the flavor of film noir in that "Golden Age" it was this one.

Every poss...more
Ian Tregillis
Oh, man, do I love me some Raymond Chandler. If I had a dime for every time the prose in this book rocked me on my heels, I'd have enough for a cup of coffee. (And not a cheapo 1940 cup of coffee, either. Something that came out of a polished chrome machine, with a name ending in "-cino".)

Although this is only the second Philip Marlowe novel, it's nearly the last for me. Each Marlowe novel is a gem, a delightful little gem, but Chandler only wrote 7 of them (not counting short story collections,...more
David
Farewell, My Lovely reminded me of Cornell Woolrich in that Raymond Chandler's plot is at least as ridiculous as the plot of any (famously ridiculous) Woolrich novel. What is remarkable is how differently Chandler and Woolrich deal with their own absurdities. The Woolrich strategy is to build a novel whose narrative drive is so intense that readers (hopefully) never notice the plot's defects. The Chandler strategy is just the opposite: His characters spend much of the novel sitting around and tr...more
AC
It took me a long time to like this book. The writing was much better than Big Sleep, where it took half the book for RC just to find his voice -- his first book -- I mean, to really find it. The writing here was often gorgeous... and pointless... and so very modern. But it wasn't till ch. 25 that I started really to dig the writing, and even then I couldn't see why I was reading it -- till... it all fell together at the end... and made it all smooth and satisfying and worthwhile.

The great thing...more
MichelleCH
There's this skirt, see and she's got these jewels that would make a rich man cry. There's been a murder in a dive and the heat is on the trail of cheap hood who's bumped off the manager while looking for his dame Velma Valento. While on the trail of the bird, Marlowe is called by a sucker who is being blackmailed to provide some protection from some goons. The sucker is bumped off and Marlowe is left holding the bag. This leads him to the blond with legs all the way to Canada; the same dame who...more
Erik
The second Marlowe story continues to establish him as a racist, sexist, homophobic asshole that I just can't help but love. I'm not alone, either! "Farewell..." brings Marlowe a female sidekick, almost as sharp as he is, who also can't help but love him. These first few Chandler novels, the story took second stage to the characters for me, which is a treat when you're dealing with (what was originally conceived as) pulp. This solidified my fan status, while the following two novels confirmed me...more
Linds
"She leaned forward a little and her smile became just a little glassy. Suddenly, without any real change in her, she ceased to be beautiful. She looked merely like a woman who would have been dangerous one hundred years ago, and twenty years ago daring, but who today was just Grade B Hollywood."

I love Chandler's clipped descriptions and dialogue. I just finished the book and I couldn't tell you the plot. Somehow his writing is good enough that you don't care.
Steven Harbin
First read as an undergrad in college, maybe 1974 or 1975. Still one of my all time favorites even though I'm more cognizant of it's flaws now. I still recommend it to just about everyone I meet, especially readers who like hard boiled mystery and great writing.
Perry Whitford
Philip Marlowe's second case begins with a memorable chance encounter with a ludicrously dressed man mountain, the ex-con Moose Malloy. Clearly a force of nature worth getting acquainted with, Marlowe sticks his oar in because he takes to the Moose, and who wouldn't, looking like that?: 'He was a big man but not more than six foot five inches tale and not wider than a beer truck.'
Marlowe loses the Moose, as do the police, who want him for murder, but meanwhile the detective gets a case, playing...more
Michael
Jun 24, 2012 Michael rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: Mystery fans, Noir fans, English students
Recommended to Michael by: Don Webb
Shelves: pulp-fiction
I'm a huge Dashiell Hammett fan, and have read nearly all of Hammett. That makes it harder for me to appreciate Chandler, who seems to have co-opted Hammett's style, even though in some ways he surpasses him. Hammett had actual experience as a private detective, while Chandler did not. Hammett was sincere in his desire to portray a decadent world (he was a Stalinist), while Chandler was more an aesthete, exploring decadence for its sensual delights. Chandler had more skill with the English langu...more
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The lack of classic Crime Fiction books. 1 24 Dec 28, 2013 05:10PM  
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Pulp Fiction: Murder, My Sweet 8 27 Oct 27, 2012 03:41AM  
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1377
Raymond Thornton Chandler was an American novelist and screenwriter.

In 1932, at age forty-four, Raymond Chandler decided to become a detective fiction writer after losing his job as an oil company executive during the Depression. His first short story, "Blackmailers Don't Shoot", was published in 1933 in Black Mask, a popular pulp magazine. His first novel, The Big Sleep, was published in 1939. In...more
More about Raymond Chandler...
The Big Sleep The Long Goodbye The Lady in the Lake The High Window The Little Sister

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“I needed a drink, I needed a lot of life insurance, I needed a vacation, I needed a home in the country. What I had was a coat, a hat and a gun. I put them on and went out of the room.” 110 likes
“It was a blonde. A blonde to make a bishop kick a hole in a stained-glass window.” 102 likes
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