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A Irmãzinha
Raymond Chandler
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A Irmãzinha (Philip Marlowe #5)

4.02  ·  Rating Details  ·  8,393 Ratings  ·  394 Reviews
Raymond Chandler's fifth novel has Philip Marlowe going to Hollywood as he explores the underworld of the glitter capital, trying to find a sweet young thing's missing brother. Along the way he uncovers a little blackmail, a lot of drugs, and more than enough murder.
Published 2005 by L&PM Pocket (first published 1949)
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Dan Schwent
May 10, 2012 Dan Schwent rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A woman from a small Kansas town hires Philip Marlowe to find her missing brother. What Marlowe finds is himself ensnared in a web of drugs, blackmail, and murder...

As I've said many times, noir fiction and I go together like a bottle of cheap vodka and nightmares about being chased by coyotes. The Little Sister by the esteemed Raymond Chandler is no exception.

It may be because it's been a few months since I've read one of Raymond Chandler's oddly poetic noir masterpieces but I liked The Little
Jul 11, 2014 Evgeny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book begins with an exciting chase scene: Philip Marlowe tries to catch a fly... Actually, I am kidding. The PI, not having any case to work on is so bored that he starts hunting aforementioned fly. When a girl shows up on his door he takes her case for a measly sum of $20. The girl came from Nowhere, Kansas (the actual name of the place is Manhattan - and I do not mean NYC location) and she wants to locate her brother who supposedly lives somewhere in LA. The routine investigation leads Mar ...more
Aug 12, 2011 Sketchbook rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Written in the late '40s when RC was sick of Hollywood and
depressed about his wife's health (she was 17 years older),
RC was fretful and feeling more insolent than usual. So he used
Movieland as his setting. The titular sister, from the midwest,
lands in SoCal looking for her missing brother as, we later
learn, they both want to blackmail their Almost Famous Sis
who's in Pix. From real life RC borrows a scandal involving
mobster Bugsy Siegel who was allowed out of prison for a few
days to visit his
Nov 16, 2013 AC rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-mystery
This one is very hard to rate. So let's call it 4.5 stars. There are flaws. The plot really *is* too complex, as Marlowe himself admits. And at times, especially in the first half, there is an even deeper problem. Marlowe is (always has been and always will be; see Chandler's letter to D.J. Ibberson, dated April 19, 1951) 38, but the author himself at the time of writing was already 61 -- and, quite obviously, none too happy about it. That discrepancy of voice is sometimes too apparent. On the o ...more
Jun 01, 2014 Brandon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Wonderful what Hollywood will do to a nobody. It will make a radiant glamour queen out of a drab little wench who ought to be ironing a truck driver’s shirts, a he-man hero with shining eyes and brilliant smile reeking of sexual charm out of some overgrown kid who was meant to go to work with a lunchbox. Out of a Texas car hop with the literacy of a character in a comic strip it will make an international courtesan, married six times to six millionaires and so blasé and decadent at the end of i ...more
Jun 17, 2015 Darwin8u rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
This novel used similes that were long and round and thin, like a rattailed file that has been ground smooth.

This novel is a sort of sad whisper, like a mortitian asking for a down payment.
This novel had a low lingering voice with a sort of moist caress in it like a damp bath towl.
This novel felt like a nice leg.
This novel was brought up straight, like the wicked foreman of the Lazy Q.
This novel sounded like somebody putting aways saucepans.
This novel flashed like lightening.
This novel burned li
My, was Raymond in a foul mood when he wrote this. Fine by me as I was in one when I read it.

I see this book's copped a bit on goodreads. Unfair. Totally unfair. If you get the drift, the guy's got the shits and he is looking at life from the wrong end of the telescope, he does such a good job of that.

There are two types of people in the world. The ones for whom money is everything: they need to get as much of it as possible, take it willynilly from whereever they can, make sure nobody else gets
Nicholas Karpuk
Dec 08, 2008 Nicholas Karpuk rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Dames, Broads, Down on their luck joes, flat foots, PIs, hired goons
It was either the third or the fourth time a dame, in a fit of histrionics kissed Philip Marlowe that I became slightly exasperated.

Don't get me wrong, Raymond Chandler is a good writer, his prose is packed with cleverness to the point of overflowing, the dialogue snaps, and everything has the cool sleazy vibe of old time Hollywood.

But even one of the characters points out how baffling it is that ladies just seem to want to lock lips with sadsack detective Philip Marlowe.

Otherwise, the writing
Joel Lacivita
Dec 02, 2015 Joel Lacivita rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Yet another fantastic Raymond Chandler book!! This time Marlow goes into Hollywood and we get his take on the the movie business in the late 1940's. His prose is top notch and one of a kind. I marvel at the consistency of the writing and constantly colorful analogies and metaphors. One of my all time favorite writers.

The Little Sister deals with a young woman who is trying to find her brother and of course Marlow is hired to do the job. He works his way through a labyrinth of high life sleaze tr
Aug 03, 2009 Ed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rambling plot sometimes hard to follow, BUT the P.I. Marlowe bittersweet voice teems throughout. Famous metaphors work well. The wrap-up is pretty decent. This book skewers the Hollywood glitterati.
Marlowe Is Back Again, but in a Rather Bad Mood

In 1949, after a spell of almost six years, Raymond Chandler had his hero Philip Marlowe re-enter the stage in The Little Sister, a weird case of multiple blackmailing and mob murder. It all starts in a seemingly harmless way when Orfamay Quest, a rather prim-looking, mousy young woman asks him to find out the whereabouts of her brother Orrin. Marlowe, in a strange way fascinated and simultaneously revolted by the demure and holier-than-thou Orfamay
Cathy DuPont
Aug 31, 2012 Cathy DuPont rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: noir fans, hard boiled fans
Turn left; now go 3.15 miles south and make a U-turn back .34 miles; go right 5.34 miles; and on and on. That was how this hard-boiled noir classic read for me from about half way through to the end. When I thought I had everything in its right place, who did what to whom and why, everything got jumbled again and I’m back to square one and not sure who did what in the last 20 pages I read. It was a very complex novel but an excellent example of my favorite genre from one of my favorite writers a ...more
Jun 08, 2014 Dave rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I like the way Raymond Chandler writes--his books have an easy flow, and every so often you run into a great simile, like "The smell of old dust hung in the air as flat and stale as a football interview," or "She jerked away from me like a startled fawn might, if I had a startled fawn and it jerked away from me." If you just surrender to the flow, you can overlook his ridiculous characterizations of women, and the great unwieldiness of his plots.

I read two summaries of the plot after I'd finish
Ahmad Sharabiani
The Little Sister (Philip Marlowe, #5), Raymond Chandler, Esmail Fassih (translator)
عنوان: خواهر کوچیکه؛ نویسنده: ریموند چندلر، برگردان: اسماعیل فصیح؛ مشخصات نشر: تهران، سیمرغ، چاپ نخست 1376، در 274 ص، شابک: 9646584004 ؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان امریکایی قرن 19 م
The Little sister by Raymond Chandler.

Philip Marlowe has a small and dirty little office. Marlowe is a private detective. some days he's on the side of the police and some days not. One of those days Orfamay Quest walks into his office with a request...find her brother Orrin. He's been gone from home back in Manhattan, Kansas for a long time and his letters have stopped.
This begins Marlowe's long and complicated journey in finding Orfamay's brother. The twists and turns that come with each char
Nancy Oakes
I love this series. Absolutely. If modern American crime writers could write like this, my tbr pile would be beyond overflowing.

If you want a little more about this book than what I've written here, you can click here and read about it at my reading journal. Otherwise, read on.

Like all of the Chandler novels so far, The Little Sister has a plot that is once again overly convoluted and overly complex, but Chandler is in rare form here, having Marlowe spill his guts about the city, his job, the
Ian Tregillis
Hmm. Maybe 3.5 for this one?

Definitely 4 for the sentence level craft. Wonderful lines like, "The room was full of silence like a fallen cake." And the first chapter is perhaps the best first chapter of the Marlowe novels I've read thusfar. This one is snappier and funnier than some of the others (though they all have their funny moments, thanks to Marlowe's quick sardonic wit). Say what one must about his characterization, but Chandler knew how to string words together.

As for that characteriza
Dec 01, 2011 Harry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Now here's an odd duck.

I got a collection of Raymond Chandler novels from the library recently, not expecting anything more than a couple of fun detective stories to read over Thanksgiving. For the first novel I read, The Lady in the Lake, that's pretty much what I got. Private eye Philip Marlowe is tasked to find a millionaire's missing wife, stumbles onto a conspiracy that gets quite a few people killed, and at the end of the story he gets the chance to prove he's the smartest man in the room,
Jan 18, 2010 Nikki rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, crime
Raymond Chandler's writing is still the most amazing stuff I've ever seen, don't get me wrong. This book seemed a little more worn than the others -- or maybe I'm getting more used to it. I still love the voice he's given to Marlowe, and I still think his work is probably worth reading no matter what, but this one didn't fill me with glee. It's easy to read, it's atmospheric, the actual writing is good, but... the plot is incoherent (no surprises there) and the characters, particularly the women ...more
Jul 10, 2008 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: noirboiled
The point of reading a Philip Marlowe novel is to spend time with Philip Marlowe, one of the great creations in all of American literature, not to spend time with a good mystery--Raymond Chandler was not much of a mystery writer, truth be told. In reading a Marlowe novel, then, the question, bizarrely, becomes this: How much does the mystery interfere with the novel? In the case of The Little Sister, the answer, happily, is not too much. The book is never in any real danger of sinking under the ...more
Jan 22, 2015 Angelica rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ma
This book did have the delicious self-deprecating humor that is the main reason why I read these books. Still, I wasn't able to enjoy it...

I guess the formula is just getting old for me. The characters are so cliché that I will start looking for them as soon as I begin reading the book. "Oh, so this is the crooked cop!" "And here we have our femme fatale..." I know this is, in part, the mark of the genre, but I wish there was more. I wish noir authors would take better care and actually make an
Feb 05, 2009 Andy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hardboiled-dicks
Meh, you would think that Raymond Chandler would rip out his rapier wit when he finally tackled the subject of Phillip Marlowe in Hollywood, but there's something stale and cliched about the whole affair. A great opportunity to tear up the fakest city on the planet, and Chandler gets pussy on us. Boo!
Mar 14, 2014 Jessica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reading this makes me wonder what Chandler would have thought of our current surveillance culture and the utter pervasiveness of cameras. A bit confusing in spots as this is a larger-than-normal cast for Marlowe to interrogate, but clever in the execution.
Jack Gattanella
Mar 18, 2016 Jack Gattanella rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: noir
4.5 out of 5

"And I don't tell the cops... why? Who am I cutting my throat for this time? A blonde with sexy eyes and too many door keys? A girl from Manhattan, Kansas? I don't know. All I know is that something isn't what it seems and the old tired but always reliable hunch tells me that if the hand is played the way it is dealt the wrong person is going to lose the pot. Is that my business? Well, what is my business? Do I know? let's not go into that. You're not human tonight, Marlowe. Maybe I
Fede Valotta
3.5 estrellas

Reseña completa en Atrapado en la lectura

Este libro me gustó bastante, aunque tardé horrores en terminarlo. Me explico. Mientras lo iba leyendo, iban surgiendo nombres, nombres y, es un policial, ¿qué esperaba que sucediera? Sin embargo, esto no me detuvo a seguir leyendo (aunque, mucho más lento).

Lo que si me sucedió, y no sé si soy al único que le pasó, es que durante todo el libro, no entendí absolutamente para nada hacia donde iba la investigación. Llamenmé corto de
Michael Lark, who is best known for his collaborations with Ed Brubaker and Greg Rucka, uses a restrained style that balances heavy spot-blacks that perfectly match the comic-noir stories both men specialize in. Lark did the pencils for Brubaker's break-out work 'Scene of the Crime', which was also the first collaboration between Brubaker and Sean Phillips, who provided the inks, one which would later produce 'Criminal', 'Incognito', and 'Fatale', among the finest modern comic revisions of Noir ...more
Jan C
Sep 17, 2011 Jan C rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of noir
I haven't read any Raymond Chandler for a while. I do have a book of people paying homage to Chandler and Marlowe, Raymond Chandler's Philip Marlowe: A Centennial Celebration for his centennial celebration.

I remember going through a big Chandler faze - read 'em all. Don't remember if I read this one, but I probably did. Also read a critical biography. Don't recall the name or author. But this was about 30 years ago.

So I looked forward to reading The Little Sister - I had a Robert Mitchum voice i
Feb 20, 2011 Joe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-thriller
This, the fifth of Raymond Chandler's novels, is a novel that in some ways invites readers not to like it as much as Chandler's other stories. It is nothign to do with the writing style, which is up to the expected Chandler standards. Rather, it is an emotional reaction to the leading female character, Orfamay Quest. She rankes among the least pleasant of Chandler's characters, though her unpleasnt nature is central to the theme of the book.

Throughout chandler's novels Philip Marlowe displays tw
Feb 25, 2011 Richard rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
"Good night, amigo. I wear black because I am beautiful and wicked--- and lost."

I stood up. She leaned back and a pulse beat in her throat. She was exquisite, she was dark, she was deadly. Utterly beyond the moral laws of this or any world I could imagine. And nothing would touch her, not even the law. i>

This is the weakest Marlowe book that I have read to date. It has all the elements of a good, pulpy, shoot-em-in-the-kneecaps noir, but the elements refused... to do... something. What is
Jun 30, 2013 lisa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The Little Sister by Raymond Chandler is the fifth novel in the series featuring hardboiled private detective Philip Marlowe. It seems that I read one Marlowe novel a year, so this is my book for 2013. What I will remember most about The Little Sister is my sense that this is the “odd” one.

The story begins with Marlowe in his office. He obviously doesn’t have a case or anything to do, so his focus is on a blue bottle fly. Marlowe watches the fly, waiting for his chance, and when it finally arri
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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 about Raymond Chandler...

Other Books in the Series

Philip Marlowe (8 books)
  • The Big Sleep (Philip Marlowe #1)
  • Farewell, My Lovely (Philip Marlowe #2)
  • The High Window (Philip Marlowe #3)
  • The Lady in the Lake (Philip Marlowe #4)
  • The Long Goodbye (Philip Marlowe, #6)
  • Playback (Philip Marlowe, #7)
  • Todo Marlowe (Philip Marlowe #1-7)

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“I hung up. It was a good start, but it didn’t go far enough. I ought to have locked the door and hidden under the desk.” 32 likes
“She smelled the way the Taj Mahal looks by moonlight.” 27 likes
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