Thursday, December 17, 2009

From The Big Sleep to The Long Goodbye and More or Less How We Got There - Leigh Brackett

in Take One (Montreal), January 1974.

Also looks like it might be reprinted in The Big Book of Noir, by Ed Gorman, Martin H. Greenberg and Lee Server - Carroll and Graf 1998.

From the Big Book of Noir version:

"The Long Goodbye is an enormously long book. Done as is, it would come out a minimum of four hours' running time, and most of that talk. Ergo, it must be cut, and heavily.
Second problem, cut what and where?
This entailed endless rereadings. and it seemed that the deeper one dug, the more one analyzed, the more the problems multiplied.
Structurally, the book is awkward. Chandler is in effect telling two stories, so that you have first the Marlowe-Terry Lennox-Sylvia story, and then you have the Marlowe-Eileen Wade-Roger story, the two hung together by an involved and tortured chain of coincidences.
While the same criticism can be levelled against The Big Sleep as well, there is a difference. In Sleep the stories are better integrated, and Chandler never gives the reader time to consider the holes in the connective tissue. In Goodbye he gives far too much time. Moreover, in Sleep he was telling a tale, an entertainment; he didn't ask us to believe it. In Goodbye, he did. He wanted us to feel that these were real people in a real society, with real loves and hates, and therefore suspension of disbelief was that much more difficult."

4 out of 5

No comments:

Post a Comment