Philip Marlowe Books

Philip Marlowe is a private detective. When General Sherwood fails to locate his son-in-law, he hires Marlowe to determine the man’s whereabouts. Marlowe has no reason to reject the case.

Order of Philip Marlowe Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Big Sleep 1939 Description / Buy
2 Farewell, My Lovely 1940 Description / Buy
3 The High Window 1942 Description / Buy
4 The Lady in the Lake 1943 Description / Buy
5 The Little Sister 1949 Description / Buy
6 The Simple Art of Murder 1950 Description / Buy
7 Trouble Is My Business 1950 Description / Buy
8 The Long Good-bye 1953 Description / Buy
9 Playback 1958 Description / Buy
10 Poodle Springs 1989 Description / Buy
11 Perchance to Dream 1991 Description / Buy
12 The Black-Eyed Blonde 2014 Description / Buy
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He wants the money and the situation seems cut and dry. It isn’t until he meets the General’s daughters that things take an interesting turn. Not only are Carmen and Vivian eyeing him in ways that are not completely appropriate but Marlowe’s investigation has drawn him into conflict with a number of hostile parties, including the police and the mob.

The PI must repel Carmen and Vivian’s advances whilst also wading through a slew of suspects.

This is the plot of “The Big Sleep”, the first novel in the Philip Marlowe series. It is within the confines of this volume that Philip Marlowe first appeared under his name.

However, The Big Sleep did not introduce Marlowe to the world. Before Raymond Chandler, the author delivered “The Big Sleep”, he mostly dabbled in short stories that appeared in pulp magazines.

It was within his earlier short stories that characters like Carmady appeared, heroes with engaging personalities that fascinated readers. Chandler did not set out to create Marlowe.

Rather, he crafted a number of protagonists like Carmady for his short stories that boasted some of the traits that people today associate with Marlowe.

Over time, as his popularity grew, publishers saw a need to collect all of Chandler’s stories under a single volume, a process that encouraged the author to amalgamate all his heroes into a single protagonist known as Philip Marlowe.

This emergence of the Marlowe character coincided with Chandler’s decision to transition from short stories to novels. The Philip Marlowe novels, which debuted in the 1930s, went on to define the hard-boiled detective genre.

People who discovered Marlowe in the 21st Century have been known to dismiss the character and the books for their over-dependence on trite clichés and tropes. They are unaware that Marlowe actually pioneered the storytelling techniques upon which the crime fiction genre hinges.

The protagonist at the center of the series is a pretty large man with a bevy of vices. He drinks far too much whiskey and he smokes his fair share of cigarettes. The women love him and he isn’t afraid to indulge in their sensuality.

But Marlowe is keen of mind. He never permits his lusts to lead him astray. The detective spends the various installments of the Philip Marlowe series solving the head-scratching mysteries and murders that people bring his way.

Philip Marlowe Awards

The Big Sleep received an Anthony Award Nomination (2000).

Philip Marlowe Books into Movies

A number of Philip Marlow books have become movies, including Farewell My Lovely, The High Window, The Big Sleep, Lady in the Lake, The Little Sister, The Long Goodbye, and Poodle Springs. Some books have been adapted more than once.

Best Philip Marlowe Books

Raymond Chandler has been praised primarily for his memorable prose and descriptions so vivid they make you feel like you are standing right next to Philip Marlowe, with the best books in the series including:

Farewell My Lovely: When Marlowe comes across Moose Mallory, the detective is still trying to solve the case of a woman’s missing husband. But then Moose, a brute who just left prison, kills a man and things spiral out of control.

Now Marlow has a couple of murders and a ring of jewel thieves to worry about.

The Long Goodbye: Life was taking a poor turn for Lennox. The drunk’s rich wife was dead and he needed to leave town quickly. Marlowe was happy to lend his friend a helping hand.

But Lennox still died, having committed suicide. Now Marlowe has to resolve the mess Lennox left in his wake. That includes proving that Lennox did not take his wife’s life.

Other Book Series You May Like

Be sure to check out the “Jade de Jong” Series by Jassy Mackenzie. Jade de Jong is a private investigator. She left South Africa years earlier when her father, a police officer was killed. Now she is back to ply her trade in a country still struggling to forget the horrors of Apartheid.

Another series you may like is “Aidan Waits” Series by Joseph Knox. Aidan is a disgraced police officer in Manchester. His past transgressions and his drug abuse have left his career in tatters. And because he is so insignificant, Aidan’s superiors keep finding ways of stranding him with the bleakest of cases.

What Is The Next Book in The Philip Marlowe Series?

There doesn't seem to be an upcoming book in The Philip Marlowe Series. The newest book is The Black-Eyed Blonde and was released on November, 30th 2013.

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