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The Big Sleep

Raymond Chandler (Author)

The Big Sleep (1939) is a hardboiled crime novel by Raymond Chandler, the first to feature detective Philip Marlowe. The work has been adapted twice into film, once in 1946 and again in 1978. The story is set in Los Angeles, California and is noted for its complexity, with many characters double-crossing one another and many secrets being exposed throughout the narrative. The title is a euphemism for death; it refers to a rumination in the final pages of the book about “sleeping the big sleep.”


In 1999, the book was voted ninety-sixth of Le Monde’s “100 Books of the Century”. In 2005, it was included in “TIME’s List of the 100 Best Novels.”

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