Tag Archives: noir

Murder Is a Messy Business

I’ll Be Waiting  by Raymond Chandler (1939)


Tuesday’s Tale of Crime Mystery   May 19, 2020


A sexy red-headed lady, foxy hotel detective, and bad boys with guns in the L.A. underworld. You’ll love this sleek little noir with its evocative language by Raymond Chandler.

Here is our femme fatale, Eve Cressy lounging on a sofa listening to the radio:

“She was all curled up with her feet under her on a davenport which seemed to contain most of the cushions in the room. She was tucked among them carefully, like a corsage in the florist’s tissue paper.”


Tony Reseck, hotel dick, is a slick guy with a bad history:

“He smiled his toy smile. His quiet sea-gray eyes seemed almost to be smoothing the long waves of her hair.”

The art of description, right? Nobody writes like Raymond Chandler, the way he plays the reader with his sassy style and wit. Every line has a bang to it: richness of texture, intriguing subtext in the dialogue, and  hard prose. I love this writer. I fell in love with his novels The Big Sleep, The Long Goodbye, Farewell My Lovely when I was researching my mystery Greylock. My main character Alexei Georg had an obsession with Philip Marlowe—and so did I.


In today’s short story, we are at the Windemere Hotel in Los Angeles at one a.m. Tony Reseck finds a woman in the Radio Room. Eve Cressy has been waiting for her man for 5 days, stashed inside her hotel room with a balcony. Her man was just let out of prison.  Tonight she ventures out to the lobby to listen to Benny Goodman music. No sunset, no deep kisses, but boy is this story hot. And, there’s $25,000 and others waiting for “her man” too. Murder is a messy business.

“You like Goodman, Miss Cressy?” Reseck asked.

“Not to cry over.  This jitterbug music gives me the backdrop of a beer flat. I like something with roses in it.”



Read the short story at AE Library:



Watch the short film, a steamy one directed by Tom Hanks, starring Bruno Kirby, Marg Helgenberger, Dan Hedaya on YouTube: 30 minutes and it’s wonderful.




Raymond Chandler was an American author of detective fiction, the creator of the private detective  Philip Marlowe, characterized as a poor but honest upholder of ideals in an opportunistic and sometimes brutal society in Los Angeles.

“The most durable thing in writing is style.”





Don’t forget to view the INDEX above of more free reading at Reading Fiction Blog. This is a compendium of over 200 short stories by more than 100 famous storytellers of mystery, suspense, supernatural, ghost stories, ‘quiet horror,’ crime, sci-fi, and mainstream fiction.


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Other Reading Web Sites to Visit

Kirkus Mystery & Thrillers Reviews

Books & Such    Bibliophilica   NewYorkerFictionOnline

 Lovecraft Ezine    HorrorNews.net   Fangoria.com   

Slattery’s Art of Horror Magazine   Chuck Windig’s Terrible Minds

   Horror Novel Reviews    HorrorSociety.com     

Monster Librarian       The Story Reading Ape Blog

For Authors/Writers:  The Writer Unboxed

Literature Blog Directory   

Blog Collection

Blog Top Sites




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Killers, Cool and Slick

The Killers   by Ernest Hemingway (1927)

Tuesday’s Tale of Terror,   January 19, 2016











Human evil and violence prevail in this tidy little mystery, which is seedy and suspenseful. Gangsterism! If you are a Hemingway fan, you likely know the Nick Adams Stories. This is one of them. Two men walk into a bar … well, not exactly a bar, a lunchroom/saloon named Henry’s in Summit, near Chicago. We meet two hit men.  Did you ever know hit men to eat with their gloves on? You gotta love Hemingway.

In The Killers, male camaraderie, irony, and death are big themes for this noir. For our young and innocent protagonist Nick (the “effaced” narrator), he is initiated into the dark side of life.





Hemingway, known for his ‘minimalist’ writing, who was greatly influenced by Gertrude Stein, wrote The Killers first draft in a frenzy of inspiration before he ate his lunch one day in May 1926. If you want to experience brilliant characterization through terse and clean dialogue, this is the story to read. I read it three times; it was that good.







Want some insight on Hemingway’s thoughts on writing? Here’s one nugget: “The most important thing I’ve learned about writing is never write too much at a time… never pump yourself dry. Leave a little for the next day … When you’re still going and you come to an interesting place and you know what’s going to happen next, that’s the time to stop. Then leave it alone and don’t think about it; let your subconscious mind do the work.”  [From With Hemingway, A Year in Key West and Cuba by Arnold Samuelson.]

‘Let your subconscious mind do the work.’ I like that a lot. Trusting that other side of your creativity.




Read The Killers online at Liternet.bg

Listen to the Audio at YouTube.com.

Watch this full feature noir film adapted by Universal, starring Lee Marvin, Angie Dickinson, John Cassevetes, and Ronald Reagan (1.26 hours):  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sUSnxAA9qlU


Don’t forget to view the INDEX above of more free Tales of Terror.

This is a compendium of over 170 short stories by over 100 master storytellers of mystery,  supernatural, horror, and ghost stories.

Join me in reading one short story every week!

Comments are welcome.


Other Reading Web Sites to Visit

Mysteries In Paradise   Sisters In Crime Blog  Crime Fiction Lover

Books & Such   Bibliophilica    Lovecraft Ezine     HorrorAddicts.net  

Horror Novel Reviews    HorrorSociety.com

Monster Librarian     HorrorNews.net     HorrorTalk.com

 Rob Around Books      The Story Reading Ape Blog

For Authors/Writers:  The Writer Unboxed

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