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.
"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.
Very good plus.
We work hard to meet our ethical responsibilty to describe our material accurately. All items are guaranteed as described and may be returned for any reason within 10 days. Please notify us before mailing a return.
We guarantee the authenticity of our items. All items are original (meaning not facsimiles or reproductions), first editions (i.e. first printings), unless otherwise noted. TPM is a member of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association of America and upholds their Code of Ethics.
All items subject to prior sale. Domestic orders over $250 and international orders over $500 ship gratis. We use USPS unless otherwise requested. Expedited, overnight, or international shipping, as well as other carriers, may carry additional costs beyond quoted rates. All orders receive tracking information and a direct contact in case of any questions.
We accept all major credit cards, Paypal, Venmo, check, money order, and bank wire. We are happy to accomodate institutional buyers' needs. Sales tax will be added to applicable purchases.
If for any reason you are dissatisfied with your purchase, please contact us. We prioritize our long-term relationships far above any individual purchase, and we want you to love your item as much as we loved cataloguing it.