The Postman Always Rings Twice, Double Indemnity, Mildred Pierce and Selected Stories

The Postman Always Rings Twice Double Indemnity Mildred Pierce and Selected Stories Book Jacket Status Jacketed These three classics from the master of the noir novel along with five otherwise unavailable short stories are electric with the taut narrative voice the suspense and t

  • Title: The Postman Always Rings Twice, Double Indemnity, Mildred Pierce and Selected Stories
  • Author: James M. Cain Robert Polito
  • ISBN: 9780375414381
  • Page: 272
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Book Jacket Status Jacketed These three classics from the master of the noir novel, along with five otherwise unavailable short stories, are electric with the taut narrative voice, the suspense, and the explosive violence and eroticism that were James M Cain s indelible hallmarks.The Postman Always Rings Twice, Cain s first novel the subject of an obscenity trial in Bos Book Jacket Status Jacketed These three classics from the master of the noir novel, along with five otherwise unavailable short stories, are electric with the taut narrative voice, the suspense, and the explosive violence and eroticism that were James M Cain s indelible hallmarks.The Postman Always Rings Twice, Cain s first novel the subject of an obscenity trial in Boston, the inspiration for Camus s The Stranger is the fever pitched tale of a drifter who stumbles into a job, into an erotic obsession, and into a murder Double Indemnity which followed Postman so quickly, Cain s readers hardly had a chance to catch their breath is a tersely narrated story of blind passion, duplicity, and, of course, murder Mildred Pierce, a work of acute psychological observation and devastating emotional violence, is the tale of a woman with a taste for shiftless men and an unreasoned devotion to her monstrous daughter All three novels were immortalized in classic Hollywood films Also included here are five masterful stories Pastorale, The Baby in the Icebox, Dead Man, Brush Fire, The Girl in the Storm that have been out of print for decades.

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    About “James M. Cain Robert Polito

    • James M. Cain Robert Polito

      James Mallahan Cain was an American journalist and novelist Although Cain himself vehemently opposed labelling, he is usually associated with the hardboiled school of American crime fiction and seen as one of the creators of the roman noir.He was born into an Irish Catholic family in Annapolis, Maryland, the son of a prominent educator and an opera singer He inherited his love for music from his mother, but his high hopes of starting a career as a singer himself were thwarted when she told him that his voice was not good enough After graduating from Washington College where his father, James W Cain served as president, in 1910, he began working as a journalist for the Balti Sun.He was drafted into the United States Army and spent the final year of World War I in France writing for an Army magazine On his return to the United States he continued working as a journalist, writing editorials for the New York World and articles for American Mercury He also served briefly as the managing editor of The New Yorker , but later turned to screenplays and finally to fiction.Although Cain spent many years in Hollywood working on screenplays, his name only appears on the credits of three films, Algiers , Stand Up and Fight , and Gypsy Wildcat.His first novel he had already published Our Government in 1930 , The Postman Always Rings Twice was published in 1934 Two years later the serialized, in Liberty Magazine , Double Indemnity was published.He made use of his love of music and of the opera in particular in at least three of his novels Serenade about an American opera singer who loses his voice and who, after spending part of his life south of the border, re enters the States illegally with a Mexican prostitute in tow , Mildred Pierce in which, as part of the subplot, the only daughter of a successful businesswoman trains as an opera singer and Career in C Major , a short semi comic novel about the unhappy husband of an aspiring opera singer who unexpectedly discovered that he has a better voice than she does.He continued writing up to his death at the age of 85, his last three published works, The Baby in the Icebox 1981 , Cloud Nine 1984 and The Enchanted Isle 1985 being published posthumously However, the many novels he published from the late 1940s onward never quite rivaled his earlier successes.

    866 thoughts on “The Postman Always Rings Twice, Double Indemnity, Mildred Pierce and Selected Stories

    • This is certainly a big collection, and I have to say that perhaps reading all of the stories in one shot was not the greatest idea It all tends to kind of blur together at points However, I shall discuss each portion separately, and try to be fair.The Postman Always Rings Twice still gets 4 stars because it is really very well written, tense and suspenseful, but I do feel it kind of lags after the initial trial However, that last line packs way of a punch than I recalled A 1 writing there.Doub [...]

    • I m not sure how I wound up at Cain I think Dennis Lehane spawned some googling of influences but I m glad I did I hunted down Postman from the library and initially wasn t aware of the contents so was pleasantly surprised to find some familiar names though I ve never seen any of the movie or tv versions.Postman is starkly savage and straight to the point with a wonderful pace and set up For my money though, Double Indemnity was the best of the bunch It shares some common themes with Postman but [...]

    • This is a terrific collection of some of the very best of James M Cain s fiction I really enjoyed rereading The Postman Always Rings Twice and Double Indemnity, but it was my first time reading of Mildred Pierce that really made an impression on me Mildred Pierce is a novel of high quality and an extraordinary character study of a woman trying to make something of herself in Los Angeles in the 1930s Mildred felt like a real person to me, I rooted for her and wanted her to succeed, but it was her [...]

    • I had previously read the longer works in this collection but kept it kicking around until I could get to the short stories I am glad I did They were great reads and Cain doesn t lose any of his skill when penning shorter work Although I ve read and reviewed the novels before, I would be doing a disservice to those who have not if I didn t mention how awesome Cain is Mildred Pierce is one of my favorite novels Tom Wolfe is quoted as saying that even Chandler can t approach what Cain has done in [...]

    • For anyone wanting to explore the works of Cain, I highly recommend this Everyman s Library edition The editor made great choices regarding what to include and in which order Each of the three novels was better than its predecessor, and the short stories at the end are like lovely niblets of almost too ripe fruit and delicious stinky cheese after a fine three course meal full of fat and cholesterol You love every bite, even while dreading the inevitable heart attack.This entry is specifically fo [...]

    • I don t know what to say about these They embrace savagery These stories know how to move.Three novels in my edition, and five short stories Of the novels, Mildred Pierce by far the longest, surprisingly slow and subtle in comparison with the reckless pace of the first two Pierce also the least satisfying ending Double Indemnity the most satisfying ending, and maybe the most satisfying overall But The Postman Always Rings Twice has a clout to it, that filling station, the moment of grace in the [...]

    • If you are a fan of film noir, these are the stories the movies were based on I also really enjoyed reading Mildred Pierce in particular even though it does not read as dark as Postman or Double Indemnity Will not describe any as it would spoil the plots.

    • This is a Review for The Postman Always Rings Twice read in this collected edition.This book is particularly interesting and much deserving of its place in the lexicon of noir crime fiction, while at the same time being an obvious early novel of a great master The plot is tight, while the writing, at times, is lacking in finesse and clarity Cain appears to be feeling his way around long form fiction, which he does become a master of More after I finish Double Indemnity.

    • Mildred Pierce I liked this, even though it s what I d class as a pot boiler melodramatic I think Mildred was pretty deluded about Veda, and so, about a lot of things in her life Double Indemnity is quite different Love Walter Huff s character voice very unsentimental, dry kind of narration It reminds me a little of the William Holden character in Sunset Boulevard I love the movie for me, the movie reproduces the tone of this short story quite accurately.

    • Picked this up at Cracked and Spineless in Hobart the other day The two noir novellas are exquisite, Mildred Pierce is a slow burner but a good read too, and the stories are a bit of a mixed bag But The Postman Always Rings Twice and Double Indemnity the latter my favourite are unparalleled.

    • rating the stories together as an overall book, i d say it was a good way to pass the time nothing amazing nothing terrible my favorite of the stories is probably mildred pierce.

    • A Pioneer Of American NoirJames M Cain 1892 1977 is best remembered for a series of novels he wrote while working as a screenwriter in Hollywood during the 1930s, including The Postman Always Rings Twice , Double Indemnity and Mildred Pierce These novels were highly popular in their day and were made into several classic movies Sometimes denigrated as pulp or even as trash , these novels offer their own vision of American life and make a substantial contribution to American literature The three [...]

    • A great value, considering the price you d pay for the three novels separately Having never heard of James M Cain, getting this book was a leap of faith for me Well, lucky me I found another great author, and will most likely seek out some of his stuff.The Postman Always Rings Twice 4 stars So the title is misleading There are no postmen in the story, and no ringing either But the story was just so good that the title becomes inconsequential Might ve been called Sundaes with Gertie , for all I [...]

    • Postman and Double are variations on what is essentially the same story Scummy man finds married couple, seduces wife, schemes to murder husband, husband dead, things get a bit pear shaped.Mildred is longer than Postman and Double combined Pretty good story, but could be based on the true life story of millions of women s lives It s good that the story is longer, because Cain actually takes the time to develop and tell a story this time However, so many women have actually lived this story in re [...]

    • I d wanted to read James M Cain for a long, long time, and had never gotten around to it The NYT recently ran a piece by Michael Connelly about The Cocktail Waitress, a long lost, recently rediscovered, newly published Cain novel Holy moly, I thought, I need to read that So I promptly got on the library waitlist for it More about that particular book in another review soon, I m sure I noticed this omnibus edition and got it I was not unfamiliar with the plots for these novels, I thought I d seen [...]

    • Read April May 2011 The Postman Always Rings Twice Double IndemnityEven though I love noir movies, I ve read very little of the pulp fiction from which those movies drew their inspiration They vary widely in quality, like all genres of fiction, but Cain is one of the masters here The two novellas that I read both are contained, along with his novel Mildred Pierce and a handful of short stories, in a lovely Library of America edition are dirty fun The characters are written a bit flat deliberatel [...]

    • after dashiell hammett elevated the nickel pulp to classical status knopf published his works just as they were serialized , in comes cain where hammett s books are written from the p.o.v of law order, cain usually takes the opposite vantage the sociopath, or one finding his or herself at odds i haven t read all the stories in this edition and look forward to them serenade is also well worth a read, lurid as it might get his book the butterfly was his biggest seller, tho it s about incest preva [...]

    • Who are these people I think the dust and heat have made them all crazy This is what I thought might be going on when I lived in Tucson for a year James M Cain is classic hard boiled, fast talking, sexy stuff The storylines are improbable, and almost always involve murder, which I think we can all agree is a pretty good solution if you want to sleep with some married person you ve just met Cain s vision of America might make you feel like the world is a shitty place But they re great the charact [...]

    • 98 on the Modern Library Board s List James M Cain s The Postman Always Rings Twice is an early noir, a grizzly tale of murder and scandal set and written in the 1930s It s barely a novel, if measured solely by word count Its a hell of a novel by any other measure Frank Chambers is a vagabond, drifting between cities and jobs when he comes across Nick Papadakis roadside diner Nick is in search of hired help, and offers Frank a job Frank takes one look at Nick s wife Cora and accepts the offer So [...]

    • This amazing collection of novellas and short stories shows James M Cain s evolution from a great pulp novelist to a simply great novelist Though The Postman Always Rings Twice, Double Indemnity, and most of the stories focus on noir murder tales, and though they are spiced up with quite outrageous sexuality and violence, they are not mere titilation and exploitation Rather, they reveal that Cain s basic interests are in the question of what pushes people to extremes, and this is a great literar [...]

    • Read Postman Always Rings Twice Weird, creepy, and sordid with the added twist that criminals are stupid Frank is fundamentally stupid he couldn t think his way out of a paper bag The ironic twist at the end is heartbreaking Double Indemnity contains pure calculating evil and stupidity of the clever person Walter Huff is fantastically stupid for someone who can actually think several moves ahead of most people The stupidity shows in two ways with Walter one, he can be easily manipulated emotiona [...]

    • I think that if you are into comic books, film Noir or Murder then this is the book for you There is no wasted words and almost every line I could see as a panel in a comic book.This is is a collection of stories I was very pleased by all of them The longest was less then two hundred pages so they are in no way epic It s like you are peering into a brief moment in time, taking part in murder, cover up and the consequences of the crime All the players are written very realistically so the feelin [...]

    • Nowhere near as emotionally complex and fully realized in character and atmosphere as Chandler and unlike him, I didn t fall in love , hardly as gritty and weirdly educated as Hammett.Yet piled on with raw ugly emotion and a bitter sense of the horrid little transactions that make up a failed life.Postman Always Rings Twice is the most sadomasochistic treatment of passion in any book I know outside of aristocratic France or post 50s fiction Plus it s a heist novel How great is that Double indemn [...]

    • While I wanted to enjoy each story and short novel in this collection, I can honestly say that I only liked Mildred Pierce I found the dialogue and the narrative in the other pieces too affected for my taste It may be that the author was true to the depression era times in which he wrote, but I found his writing style distracting and could not really enjoy the characters or the stories The voice used in Mildred Pierce was so different from the other stories that it seemed to be written by a diff [...]

    • Double Indemnity was strange and very, very hot Mildred Pierce was gripping, but a little long Postman was even hotter than DI Weird that some lumpy guy who wrote advertising could write about sex so fiercely but covertly Both of those books grab you and race you to the finish lineAnyway, Cain has a style like Hammett, but something grungier, basic, behind his sentences and stories and less concern with plot, interest in character Not to say his plots aren t intriguing Far from it.Perhaps the [...]

    • If you haven t read James M Cain yet, you have to check him out.This Everyman s Library edition is a great introduction You get a lot of story in a tidy little hardback Good paper, readable print, a volume that practically begs to be held and a nice wee ribbon for a bookmark And the price is right, too.Cain s prose is lean, tight and wickedly sharp Like a back alley razor fight, you don t even feel the cut until after you see the blood By then, it s too late.Movies have been made of Cain s work [...]

    • Since this is a collection of stories some are better than others Postman fairly standard story about a femme fatale that gets a man to kill her husband Typical ending of the era, everyone goes to jail Double Indemnity a classic along the same lines but the man is an insurance man who uses his expertise to help plan the murderMildred pierce a looooong examination of a woman struggling to earn a living and raise a shrew daughter in the depression It s a weepie and things just pile on to an almost [...]

    • An excellent collection from an excellent writer After watching the TV adaptation of Mildred Pierce, I wanted to read the story It was a fascinating psychological study, although Mildred is less sympathetic in writing than in the adaptation The Postman Always Rings Twice was brilliant, even though it left me wanting a shower afterward I swore that I wouldn t read The Baby in the Icebox, based on the title alonebut once I started, I couldn t stop.The stories are dark the very definition of noir N [...]

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