Trixie Fontaine's Reviews > The Maltese Falcon

The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett
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's review
Jun 05, 2010

liked it
Read from June 05 to December 01, 2010 — I own a copy

Started reading this for a trip to San Francisco. I've seen the movie and thought it would be cool to read it while we were there right in the heart of the place and presumed I'd love it.

I actually found myself stumbling over the sentences - something about it was awkward to me. I also found Sam Spade way more offensive than Spillane's Mike Hammer and less fun to read since Sam Spade doesn't love eating the way Mike Hammer does. It just didn't seem like a fun joke at all and I couldn't get into it so I set it aside for a long time.

When I finally picked it up again it had unexpectedly grown on me. I couldn't remember what the fuck was going on in the story but it didn't matter; for some reason I enjoyed it and nothing else would really do while I was in the mood for it. I think I'll try Nick and Nora if I ever read more Hammett.

FYI: I totally disagree with the reviewer who said, "Sam Spade is an oaf. A lumbering buffoon of a detective". That makes him sound funny but to me he reads as a chilling character - not at all oafish or laughable like a bufoon. He's like cold icy aftershave that stings your nose and not soft or droopy-looking the way Bogart is. He feels like a limp-dicked rapist to me, and the freakiest part is what a deluded nutcase he is at the end.
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06/05/2010 page 8

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