Spade and Archer

Author(s): Joe Gores

Crime Fiction

When Sam Spade gets drawn into the Maltese Falcon case, we know what to expect: straight talk, hard questions, no favours, and no way for anyone to get underneath the protective shell he wears like a second skin. We know that his late partner, Miles Archer, was a son of a bitch; that Spade is sleeping with Archer's wife. What we don't know is how Spade became who he is. Now SPADE & ARCHER completes the picture. 1921: Spade sets up his own agency in San Francisco and clients quickly start coming through the door. The next seven years will see him dealing with booze runners, water-front thugs, stowaways, banking swindlers, gold smugglers, bumbling cops, and the illegitimate daughter of Sun Yat-sen; with murder, other men's mistresses, and long-missing money. He'll bring in Archer as a partner, though it was Archer who stole his girl while he was fighting in World War I. He'll tangle with a villain who never loses his desire to make Spade pay big for ruining what should've been the perfect crime. And he'll fall in love - though it won't turn out for the best. It never does with dames ...S PADE & ARCHER is a gritty, pitch-perfect, hard-boiled novel - the work of a master mystery writer-destined to become a classic in its own right.


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'A gritty, pitch-perfect noir novel. Spade & Archer is the authorized prequel to Dashiell Hammett's classic, The Maltese Falcon' DEADLY PLEASURES 'Diverting, enjoyable and highly readable piece of entertainment. And, damned if I didn't, after finishing it, idly wonder what Gores might and could do with a sequel' DEADLY PLEASURES 'Edgar-winner Gores has not only pulled off the Herculean task of writing a prequel to The Maltese Falcon but also created a rip-roaring yarn of his own that will please even the crustiest of Hammett devotees' PUBLISHERS WEEKLY (US) '[A] prequel that honors and enhances the legendary volume it enshrines...Gores has superbly recreated Hammett, straddlng the romantic and the urban novel in extremis...This is a very fine novel' -- James Ellroy AMAZON.COM 'Gores not only creates a compelling backstory for Spade but also does it so completely in the Hammett style that we suspend disbelief in an instant ... Gores nails it' BOOKLIST (US) 'Gores, a far more virtuoso plotter than Hammett, keeps multiple pots boiling furiously while providing a pitch-perfect replica of his master's voice' KIRKUS (US) 'As with Hammett's cries, this one points to corruption all over the city, enjoyably navigated by Gores, a master flatterer, if not imitator' -- Natalie Whittle FINANCIAL TIMES 'This prequel to The Maltese Falcon gives Sam Spade's back story and evokes Prohibition-era San Francisco. While it does come close to pastiche at times, Gores has the hard-boiled detective off-pat and is arguably better at plot lines than Hammett himself' GQ 'For lovers of hard-boiled detective fiction, here's the rumbustious back story, seven years before Dashiel Hammett created them in The Maltese Falcon, of Sam Spade, who is sleeping with the wife of his partner, sonofabitch Miles Archer, and how they met in San Francisco as private investigators in 1921. Pitch-perfect pastiche' SAGA 'Gores manages to channel Hammett without leaving us constantly aware that we're reading a pastiche - a trick Sebastian Faulks was unable to pull off in his Bond novel. A sequel would be most welcome' -- John O' Connell THE GUARDIAN 'Gores is brilliant on the detail - his descriptions of people and place are as observant, thrilling and lengthy as Hammett's. His diaglogue is spot on, capturing both Spade's dodgy sense of humour and the period masterfully' DAILY MIRROR 'As you'd expect, it's gritty, hard-boiled, with enough plots juggled to keep the action taut' CHOICE 'As with Hammett's crimes, this one points to corruption all over the city, enjoyably navigated by Gores, a master flatterer, if not imitator' FINANCIAL TIMES 'Spade & Archer is a gritty, pitch-perfect, hard-boiled novel - the work of a master mystery writer destined to become a classic in its own right' TANGLED WEB 'Thank heavens, then for Joe Gores, for he is one writer who fits the bill perfectly. And he had done a fine job with Spade & Archer, carefully resisting the temptation to do a pastiche of Falcon' DEADLY PLEASURES 'Gores makes a good stab at aping Hammett's pared-down writing style and he peppers his pleasingly convoluted plot with plenty of knowing literary and biographical references' THE LIST 'As a rule, prequels and sequels of great books, by writers other than the original creators, are not successful. Spade and Archer is a splendid exception' THE TIMES 'Gores has not only recreated characters from Hammett's 1930s novel The Maltese Falcon with superb ease, but has also almost perfectly aped the late mystery writer's minimalist prose style and staccato dialogues' PRESS ASSOCIATION 'Prequels to classic novels are not often successful, but this lovingly crafted forerunner to Dashiell Hammett's The Maltese Falcon is an exception to the rule. Joe Gores was the ideal man for the job: like Hammett he was a private detective himself before becoming a writer, and he's one of the most underrated crime novelists around. Colourful villains, outlandish plotting and a sure sense of character and drama make this a pleasure to read' MAIL ON SUNDAY 'Joe Gores (who himself worked in San Francisco as a detective) demonstrates an amazing skill at recreating the world and characters of one of the most iconic books in the genre; it was an ambitious task to take on, but Gores has done it with real panache' -- Barry Forshaw GOOD BOOK GUIDE

Joe Gores, formerly a private eye, is the author of sixteen other novels, including Hammett, which won FALCON Award. He has received three EDGAR Awards - one of only two authors to win in three separate categories: Best First Novel, Best Short Story, and Best Episode in a TV Series.

General Fields

  • : 9781409113249
  • : Orion Publishing Co
  • : Orion (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd )
  • : 0.462
  • : November 2009
  • : 234mm X 153mm X 25mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Joe Gores
  • : Paperback
  • : 1
  • : 813.54
  • : 352