First edition in book form of the hard-boiled classic, in which private detective Sam Spade chases a valuable artifact with the femme fatale Brigid O'Shaughnessy.
Very good plus.
"The detectives of fiction have been knocked into a cocked hat [...] by the appearance of Sam Spade." – contemporary review by Gilbert Seldes
Hammett, a former Pinkerton detective, was one of the primary pioneers of a distinctly American strain of detective fiction: the hard boiled. THE MALTESE FALCON captures many of the key traits of the genre, including a gritty setting (in this case 1920s San Francisco), morally ambiguous characters where no one seems entirely "good, " and an isolated, lone-wolf protagonist who lacks the gentlemanly demeanor of famous antecedents like Sherlock Holmes. It was first published in a series of five issues of THE BLACK MASK beginning September 1929. Although the book didn't live up to Knopf's hopes, selling about a tenth the copies A FAREWELL TO ARMS did the previous year, it was vaulted to icon status with the 1941 noir film starring Humphrey Bogart and Mary Astor.
Read more: Layman, Dashiell Hammett: A Descriptive Bibliography and Shadow Man: The Life of Dashiell Hammett.
New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1930. 7.5'' x 5''. Original grey cloth, falcon design in blue on front board, spine stamped in blue and black, publisher's device on rear board. Black topstain, fore-edge machine deckle. , 267,  pages. Pencil ownership inscription dated 1930 on front endpaper. In custom black quarter goatskin clamshell box. White spot on front board, spine gently toned, spine lean: interior fresh.
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