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Download The Glass Key Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Glass Key Audiobook, by Dashiell Hammett Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.9 out of 53.9 out of 53.9 out of 53.9 out of 53.9 out of 5 3.90 (21 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Dashiell Hammett Narrator: Stephen R. Thorne Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2011 ISBN: 9781482981834
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Paul Madvig was a cheerfully corrupt ward heeler who aspired to something better: the daughter of Senator Ralph Bancroft Henry, the heiress to a dynasty of political purebreds. Did he want her badly enough to commit murder? And if Madvig was innocent, which of his dozens of enemies was doing an awfully good job of framing him? Dashiell Hammett’s tour de force of detective fiction combines an airtight plot, authentically venal characters, and writing of telegraphic crispness. 

A one-time detective and a master of deft understatement, Dashiell Hammett virtually invented the hard-boiled crime novel.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “The plot of The Glass Key is one long maneuver—speedballing toward a futile resolution. It’s Hammett’s flat-affect tale of grasping men who want things and don’t know what to do with them when they get them. It’s a short novel with epic sweep.”

    Guardian (London)

  • “Stephen Thorne underplays his tough-guy voice to great advantage. His female voices are so good that you won’t give them a second thought.”

    AudioFile

  • “Ned Beaumont is a new kind of hard-boiled hero: morally ambiguous, of limited effectiveness, neither crack-shot nor pugilist nor deductive whiz.”

    DetNovel.com

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Daniel Burton-Rose | 2/8/2014

    " Uninspired tale of a streets to suites political fixer in prohibition San Francisco. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bob | 2/6/2014

    " Another good Hammett noir crime novel - filled with tough guys and, in this case, politicians. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bill | 2/1/2014

    " My favorite of Hammett's books. More than just a mystery, it's about politics, crime, love, friendship, and loyalty. All things we still need to grapple with today. And a great example of a simple prose stylist at the top of his game. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Iain | 1/20/2014

    " Very good noir. Not too complicated, but enough to keep you guessing until the end. Well written. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lynn | 1/20/2014

    " I was hoping for something more witty, with hijinks. The hero struck me as a stereotype, and one I don't like, a taciturn tough guy. He gets used, double-crossed and tortured by gangsters as part of a plot which was just complicated enough that I lost track of it and didn't really care. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kevin | 1/9/2014

    " a dream holds the clue "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kelan Steel Lowney | 1/5/2014

    " Not the best Hammett work. The plot is phenomenal, but the characters are a little flat. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lindsey | 1/3/2014

    " awesome, although ending is slightly disappointing. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Laura | 12/22/2013

    " This one wasn't as confusing as Red Harvest or as nutty as the Dain Curse. Or as good as the Maltese Falcon or as fun in a pre-AA way as the Thin Man. That's it for my big, fat, falling-apart collection of the complete novels of Dashiell Hammett. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Adam | 12/11/2013

    " I'm a huge fan of Miller's Crossing, so I dug the hell out of this book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Wendy Crittenden | 12/9/2013

    " I can't decide which is my favorite by Dashiell - The Glass Key or Red Harvest. The Glass Key was really smart, and had a lot of similarities to my favorite Coen Brothers film, Miller's Crossing. Loved it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jessica | 11/18/2013

    " Though it took me far too long to discover him, Hammett is fast becoming one of my favorite authors - I love how his guys piece it together by asking the age-old question "cui bono?" "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Xenophon Hendrix | 11/14/2013

    " Hardest of the hard boiled. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Nate | 10/1/2013

    " So much more than just the basis of Miller's Crossing. One of Hammett's best and therefore one of the best crime novels of the 20th century. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Scott Childers | 8/21/2013

    " Very character driven and very stylish. The mystery wasn't as intriguing as the characters dealing with the situation and each other. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brian Thornton | 6/20/2013

    " The finest examination of big city machine politics and graft since PLUNKITT of TAMMANY HALL. This was easily Hammett's best book, and that's saying something! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mommalibrarian | 5/25/2013

    " All the characters are bad people, without relief. The ending is totally implausible and I had to force myself past the beginning one third. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Adam Richter | 7/30/2012

    " A bit slower-paced than "The Maltese Falcon" or "The Thin Man," but what makes "The Glass Key" such a fascinating read is Hammett's completely unsentimental look at urban political corruption. His matter-of-fact prose makes the unseemly business of politics both humorous and a little revolting. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Breck | 3/31/2012

    " Maybe my favorite Hammett book of all. The plot is exquisitely exact, and Ned Beaumont just might be the most human protagonist of the entire crime noir sub-genre. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sarah Sammis | 2/10/2012

    " Sort of like Strangers on a Train but edgier. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sam | 1/25/2012

    " My favorite, favorite, favorite...this is what it is all about! I love this book!!! "

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About the Author
Author Dashiell Hammett

Dashiell Hammett (1894–1961) was an American author of hard-boiled detective novels and short stories. He is widely regarded as one of the finest mystery writers of all time. In addition to The Maltese Falcon, his pioneering novels include Red Harvest (1929), The Dain Curse (1929), The Glass Key (1931), and The Thin Man (1934).

About the Narrator

Stephen R. Thorne is a member of the resident acting company at Providence’s esteemed Trinity Repertory Company, where his favorite productions include Hamlet, Henry V, and The Cider House Rules. He lives with his family in Lincoln, Rhode Island.