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TOP MYSTERY with Almeta > Your Top Hardboiled Noir Read Nominations

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message 1: by Almeta (last edited Sep 16, 2011 05:05AM) (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) What is the best in Hard-Boiled fiction?

Bleakly atmospheric hardboiled fiction generally features a gritty urban protagonist who is unsentimental about sex, familiar with violence and often treads the darker side of life. With cynical attitudes, there is a code to follow, but it does not necessarily adhere to legal rules of conduct. It is based more on loyalty and honor.


message 2: by Almeta (last edited Nov 14, 2011 07:37AM) (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) I, the Jury by Mickey Spillane. The reader's introduction to iconic hard-boiled detective, Mike Hammer, accompanied by in your face sex and violence.


message 3: by Colleen (new)

Colleen | 314 comments Mod
I definitely want to get some good hard boiled books on my to read list. I just, started to read, Raymond Chandlers, The Big Sleep, and I couldn't get past the part where Phillip Marlow started slapping around the girl. Do you have other book recommendations that are less, violent?


message 4: by Almeta (last edited Sep 15, 2011 06:02PM) (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) Hard to get away from violence in a noir!

L.A. Confidential and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo are contemporary examples.

I am a fan of Dashiell Hammett whose novels were written in the early 1930's. You are likely familiar with The Maltese Falcon.

Raymond Chandler was an important contributor to this genre, so you made a good choice. Although you sound as if you would be more comfortable with Agatha Christie. ;o)


message 5: by Colleen (new)

Colleen | 314 comments Mod
Almeta wrote: "Hard to get away from violence in a noir!

L.A. Confidential and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo are contemporary examples.

I am a fan of [author:Dashiell Hammet..."


Have you read any of the Nero Wolf novels by Rex Stout. I've read many of them and love them, but I don't know if they are considered "hard boiled" or not.


message 6: by Almeta (last edited Sep 16, 2011 09:55AM) (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) Colleen wrote: "Have you read any of the Nero Wolf novels by Rex Stout. I've read many of them and love them, but I don't know if they are considered "hard boiled" or not...."

Love Nero Wolfe!!!

Wolfe does not apologize for his behavior. He is a cynic and a mercenary, but he cushions himself in savory cuisine, fine beer, and the botany of orchids. He is sequestered to a point near phobia. He is emotional. He may be gloomy, but his surroundings are not.

Archie Goodwin, on the other hand, is smart-mouthed, satirical, packs a .32 and inflicts his share of intimidation with a little roughing up. He travels the mean streets. He fits the hard-boiled description better. But Archie drinks milk! A personable guy, Goodwin deals with his boss, criminals, clients, law enforcement and the ladies with equally droll authenticity.

The Rex Stout novels do have elements of the Hard-boiled…but they are less dark, livelier and most often end favorably.


message 7: by Colleen (new)

Colleen | 314 comments Mod
Very well summed up Almeta. The Nero Wolfe novels are amoung my favorite detective novels.


message 8: by Almeta (last edited Sep 16, 2011 11:46AM) (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) Colleen wrote: "Very well summed up Almeta. The Nero Wolfe novels are amoung my favorite detective novels."

He deserves a place in the Top 100 Mysteries, in my opinion. Got a particualr tome in mind? I'll just go with the first one, shall I?

Also, I think I am going to move him over to "Soft-Boiled" Detectives.


message 9: by Colleen (new)

Colleen | 314 comments Mod
Almeta wrote: "Colleen wrote: "Very well summed up Almeta. The Nero Wolfe novels are amoung my favorite detective novels."

He deserves a place in the Top 100 Mysteries, in my opinion. Got a particualr tome i..."


The first in the series is just as good as any other. I would also agree that it should end up in soft boiled.


message 10: by [deleted user] (new)

My top book in hard boiled noir is definitely The Maltese Falcon by Raymond Chandler Lucy @noon on9-17-11


message 11: by Almeta (last edited Sep 17, 2011 04:45PM) (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) Lucy wrote: "My top book in hard boiled noir is definitely The Maltese Falcon by Raymond Chandler Lucy @noon on9-17-11"

You likely meant The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett, in which we meet Sam Spade. I think it is definitely a top in this sub-genre.

Now Raymond Chandler is also significant. The Big Sleep was first in the Philip Marlowe series.

What say we add them both, eh?


message 12: by Almeta (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) Maureen wrote: "Steig Larson's trilogy is an absolute must-read!...I don't think I've ever been so wrapped up in a mystery series as I was with this one..."

Stieg Larsson's Millennium-trilogy consists of:

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest
The Girl Who Played With Fire


message 13: by Almeta (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) Loren D. Estleman’s Amos Walker, a private investigator in Detroit in Motor City Blue , the first of a series.


message 14: by Almeta (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) Bill Pronzini’s the Nameless Detective, in San Francisco first in The Snatch


message 15: by Almeta (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) Kinky Friedman, a country-western singer turned sleuth in Greenwich Killing Time by, YES, Kinky Friedman. The first of the novels featuring the foul-mouthed, ace private eye.


message 16: by Almeta (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) Travis McGee, an adventurer, philosopher, is the protagonist in John D. MacDonald's series starting with The Deep Blue Good-by. MacDonald includes a “save Florida’s ecology” theme without offense in many of his novels and as McGee matures so does his reflection on the American scene.


message 18: by Almeta (last edited Nov 06, 2011 02:41PM) (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) The Lew Archer mysteries by Ross Macdonald. Macdonald is the third hardboiled novelist icon along with Chandler and Hammett. The Chill is the eleventh in the Lew Archer series.


message 19: by Almeta (new)

Almeta (MenFromMarrs) Fear Itself by Walter Mosley is the second with Fearless Jones, man of both principle and action. The series is narrated by bookstore owner Paris Minton and is set in 1950s Los Angeles.

Or Devil in a Blue Dress also by Walter Mosley with Easy Rawlins.


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Books mentioned in this topic

I, the Jury (other topics)
The Big Sleep (other topics)
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (other topics)
The Maltese Falcon (other topics)
L.A. Confidential (other topics)
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Authors mentioned in this topic

Dashiell Hammett (other topics)
Agatha Christie (other topics)
Raymond Chandler (other topics)
Rex Stout (other topics)
Stieg Larsson (other topics)
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