The Postman Always Rings Twice
John Garfield and Lana Turner in the 1946 movie.
Frank Chambers is a drifter, a man who, when life gets too heavy, catches the next boxcar out of town or puts his thumb out on the nearest highway. Being comfortable or achieving normalcy comes with too much responsibility. He’d rather bum it than have anyone relying on him.
It all begins with a sandwich in a California diner on a road in the middle of nearly nowhere. ...more
The Postman Always Rings Twice is a 1934 crime novel by James M. Cain. The novel was successful and notorious upon publication. It is regarded as one of the more important crime novels of the 20th century. Fast-moving and brief (only about 100 pages long, depending on the edition), the novel's mix of sexuality and violence was startling in its time and caused it to be banned in Boston. The story is narrated in the first person ...more
Frank Chambers is a con artist and a bum who ...more
Instead, I feel like I've knocked back five Cuban coffees or finally had that fantasy tryst with the Fiennes brothers.
Wow, am I amped!
This is my second James M. Cain novel (the first being Mildred Pierce—which I immediately read twice) and I'm just swooning over the overdrive, over-the-moon, over-the-top quality of the writing here.
There is NOTHING in this skinny novel that screams this will work for you! Quite the opp ...more
I've been laboring under the misapprehension that this was a play about a killer mail carrier. Maybe that's because I grew up in a time when the phrase "going postal" was coined. (In a sidebar: Isn't it great how the English language is still evolving to incorporate new words and phrases?!) My mother had just recently j ...more
Taut, tense, and with a lightning-speed pace, this is a seminal work by Cain. Its also a bit elementary, less wordy than the similar noir "The Butterfly" though not as epic (or precious, or memorable) as (my personal favorite) "Mildred Pierce."
I vaguely remember the movie with Nicholson and Lange as being hot and steamy, but the words "we did plenty" is about as hot and steamy as it gets here in THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE.
Cain sure could write hard-boiled crime though, and crime is what you get plenty of in this 1934 classic!
Zoomed right through it!
I think that’s why James M. Cain’s important 1934 crime novella is not more relevant today. After decades of infidelity and violence, the shocking events Cain describes are just not as disturbing now as they were in the 30s. When this came out there were charges of obscenity and the book was banned in some locations. These days, flip a few channels on TV and you’ll see worse. Hell, kids are playing games where there are more sexuality and violence.
But back in the day, this was edgy ...more
Stealing a man's wife, that's nothing, but stealing his car, that's larceny. ~The Postman Always Rings TwiceIf Noir can be said to have a cold, black heart it’s Postman that provided the juice to electroshock it into a beating, breathing existence. It is without a doubt one of the most important crime novels of the 20th century (of any century really) and has gone on to influence entire generations of writers and filmmakers. As a debut, it shocked, titillated and disgusted, banned upon publicat ...more
"Tomorrow night, if I come back, there'll be kisses. Lovely ones, Frank. Not drunken kisses. Kisses with dreams in them. Kisses that come from life, not death."With the one-two punch publication of both this novel and the serialized version of Double Indemnity in the mid-1930's, James M. Cain truly popularized what we know of now as being the hard-boiled sub-genre of roman noir in American fiction, a long time before the term was even coined. Since it's publication, this boo ...more
One thing for sure is there will be blood.
Well if your familiar with the authors writing and read his novel Double Indemnit ...more
"Tomorrow night, if I come back, there'll be kisses. Lovely ones, Frank. Not drunken kisses. Kisses with dreams in them. Kisses that come from life, not death."
This one is a wonderful pocket sized noir (my copy was only 116 pages). It pretty much contains everything I could ask for from the genre, filled with moral ambiguity, quick dialogue with deeper meanings and a twisty little plot. It also contains some rather shocking moments, with fairly brutal violence, profanity and scenes of sexuality. ...more
After my huge disappointment with Dashiell Hammett's "The Thin Man," I knew I could find the antidote with a re-read of James M. Cain's masterpiece, "The Postman Always Rings Twice." Thin is thin and noir is noir and Cain's first person novella stands out as the noirest of them all.
Since we know the perps from the beginning, this is never a whodunnit, not even a how-did-they-finally-get-caught mystery novel. This is Cain's search among the ruins of lust, betrayal, suspicion, confession, love and ...more
But then something even funnier happened: I couldn't stop reading.
The unattributed cover blurb on my tattered 1935 Knopf Borzoi paperback says:
"If you once begin it you will finish it; and you won't forget it. It is one of the toughest, roug...more
Noir. Beautiful. Smoky, black and white, gravelly, grainy, psychologically damaging, enthralling, shocking, and emotional. This is a book you see as though it were a Hitchcock movie. It is wonderful! I finished it a week ago and I already want to read it again.
Luck is on Frank Chambers side when he gets dumped in southern California with no car and no cash, doesn't sound too lucky admittedly but using his devilish charm he lands a job working at a small truck stop for Nick Papadakis. Then comes Nicks beautiful wife Cora and fervent lust bursts to the fore, and when Nick goes away on ...more
At first it was a little boring. The narrative was not captivating, so I wanted to leave it but the story kept me glued to the book. I couldn't understand if this was a one or five star book. After 50 pages I couldn't put this down. This was fun and at the same time sad to read. Highly recommended!
|Reading 1001: The Postman Always Rings Twice by James M. Cain||5||20||Apr 30, 2020 06:41AM|
|Mission Viejo Lib...: The Postman Always Rings Twice: Q2||5||12||Apr 27, 2020 01:51PM|
|Mission Viejo Lib...: The Postman Always Rings Twice: Q1||5||13||Apr 23, 2020 12:51PM|
|Play Book Tag: The Postman Always Rings Twice by Jame Cain, 3.5 stars||4||12||Feb 27, 2019 08:38AM|
|Catching up on Cl...: The Postman Always Rings Twice - January 2019||70||116||Feb 16, 2019 02:49PM|
|Goodreads Librari...: Please add this cover (Danish edition of Postman Always Rings Twice)||2||12||Jan 18, 2019 05:19PM|
|Indian Readers: James M. Cain - The Postman Always Rings Twice (starting Jun 27th, 2017) - Akanksha, Shalini, Sharadha, et al.||5||13||Jun 28, 2017 08:45AM|
He was born into an Irish Catholic family in Annapolis, Maryland, the son of a prominent educator and an opera singer. He inh ...more