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Red Harvest Paperback – July 17, 1989
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Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Dashiell Hammett is an original. He is a master of the detective novel, yes, but also one hell of a writer." -- Boston Globe
"Hammett's prose [is] clean and entirely unique. His characters [are] as sharply and economically defined as any in American fiction."
--The New York Times
Top Customer Reviews
RED HARVEST is probably the Continental Op's best know adventure, pitting him against the forces of corruption and crime in a small town named Personville. The Op calls the burg "Poisonville" and the cast of villainous characters that he encounters and goes up against make the nickname quite apt.
If you've seen the movies "A Fistful of Dollars", "Last Man Standing", or "Yojimbo" then you have a general idea of what the tale is about. While none of these follows Hammett's intricate plot, the premise of a lone gunman outsmarting and out dueling the whole town is what the story is about. From the time that the Op breezes into town to talk with his client, whom is murdered before the Op can ever meet with him, till the end of the story, there is lots of violence, murder, double dealing and cynical observations by the narrating detective. While we never learn very much about the Op his driven and unswerving dedication to riding the town of any and all opponents takes on the role of obsession and vigilantism by the end of the novel, so much so that the Op himself even begins to have some doubts. Not enough to stop him from completing the job however.Read more ›
"Red Harvest"'s opening paragraph is one of the best hooks I've ever read in a novel. It's fantastic. We are sucked into the mind of our narrator, the unnamed Continental operative, and we want only to read more about this man of such blunt wit. The Continental Op has been called to a town named Personville by the owner of the town's newspaper, Donald Willsson. He doesn't know what the job is, but before he can find out, the client is murdered. So the first order of business is to solve the murder. In doing so, our detective discovers how Personville got its nickname, Poisonville. Everything and everyone in this town is corrupt.Read more ›
This book inspired three movies: Akira Kurosawa's "Yojimbo," the Clint Eastwood oater "A Fistful of Dollars," and the Bruce Willis prohibition era epic "Last Man Standing." I haven't seen "Yojimbo," but the Eastwood and Willis movies hardly compare to "Red Harvest" for complexity and character development. They accentuate the bloodshed and virtually ignore everything else.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I had high expectations for this book due to the other reviews I read. This was the first book I've read by Hammett, and perhaps the only one I will bother with. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Emily Embree
Classic genius that deserves it's place in crime lit history. Sadly I'm late to the game on this one, but it was worth the wait.Published 3 months ago by Writer Boy
"Red Harvest" tells the story of one of Dashiell Hammett's greatest creations, the Continental Op detective. Read morePublished 4 months ago by B. Adducchio
This is writing as it should be: clean and crisp that draws you in and won't let you go.Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
Considering books and film, this is one of the most influential novels of the genre. The Continental Ops is the archetypal anti-hero.Published 4 months ago by James C.
A lot of violence, with too many actors, the mystery a little hard to define, the main character did not have many attractive features, including his detective skills. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Victor W. Hurst III
One of my favorite mystery books of all time. No one writes them like Hammett! It is like peeling an onion. There are so many layers of mystery to this book!Published 5 months ago by sbradford