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Trouble Is My Business

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In the four long stories in this collection, Marlowe is hired to protect a rich old guy from a gold digger, runs afoul of crooked politicos, gets a line on some stolen jewels with a reward attached, and stumbles across a murder victim who may have been an extortionist.


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In the four long stories in this collection, Marlowe is hired to protect a rich old guy from a gold digger, runs afoul of crooked politicos, gets a line on some stolen jewels with a reward attached, and stumbles across a murder victim who may have been an extortionist.

30 review for Trouble Is My Business

  1. 5 out of 5

    Evgeny

    Review updated on 29.05.2017 This is a collection of four short stories featuring Philip Marlowe, the cynical drinking PI who served a role model for all the PIs written after him - no exceptions. Trouble is my business. A rich man hired Marlowe to keep his good-for-nothing son from getting married to a woman whose sole interest in him was his money. This happens to be the first appearance of famous PI who is slightly rough around the edges and really likes to say the title phrase. Several dead bo Review updated on 29.05.2017 This is a collection of four short stories featuring Philip Marlowe, the cynical drinking PI who served a role model for all the PIs written after him - no exceptions. Trouble is my business. A rich man hired Marlowe to keep his good-for-nothing son from getting married to a woman whose sole interest in him was his money. This happens to be the first appearance of famous PI who is slightly rough around the edges and really likes to say the title phrase. Several dead bodies, corrupt policemen, organized crime bossed and their thugs keep things from getting slowing down. Finger man. Marlowe was the only witness to a murder committed by a henchman of a high-ranked politician; we all know such witnesses develop terminal illnesses really fast. Marlowe not only needed to stay alive, but also to protect a client who tried to cheat a mafia boss out of his money; the life expectancy of such people is even less than that of inconvenient witnesses. This relatively short story tightly packed with loads and loads of dead bodies. Goldfish. An old case of stolen pearls which had been never recovered suddenly made comeback with Marlowe being initially very skeptical about the whole deal, but the first dead body convinced him to follow the lead. This is probably the only Philip Marlowe story with a decent pay off (I mean monetary reward) at the end. Red Wind. Trouble followed Marlowe even when he sits in an empty bar drinking and minding his own business. A man who was looking for a woman got killed right in front of his eyes and now he once again needed to stay alive long enough to find the woman the dead man described in hope of getting some answers. I read this story several times, and it never failed to make me depressed and sad; it is depressing and sad, even by Raymond Chandler's standards. It also happened to be very good and memorable. Raymond Chandler wrote a foreword for this collection. He mentioned that he created these stories for publishing in crime journals, most notably in "Black Mask". As such, there were certain constraints he had to write them within - both in terms of plot development and style. He could rewrite them after he hit big as a writer, but it turned out to be impossible without completely destroying them. My opinion on this is that a real talent always shows even when the author does not have a complete freedom in writing. As such the collection deserves 4.5 stars with only 0.5 short of a perfect score. This is a must read for Philip Marlowe fans.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Fiona MacDonald

    Yes yes yes! Not one, but four stories with Philip Marlowe at the lead. I think Raymond Chandler is superb; his descriptions have me drooling and in my opinion he's the original hard boiled, film noir detective. I love him and every move he makes. He's witty, dry, sarcastic and dangerous. I can picture myself walking the streets at night with him, slugging a bad guy with a gun and swigging scotch in the middle of the night in a stifling hot hotel room whilst hiding from a crook. He's just an awe Yes yes yes! Not one, but four stories with Philip Marlowe at the lead. I think Raymond Chandler is superb; his descriptions have me drooling and in my opinion he's the original hard boiled, film noir detective. I love him and every move he makes. He's witty, dry, sarcastic and dangerous. I can picture myself walking the streets at night with him, slugging a bad guy with a gun and swigging scotch in the middle of the night in a stifling hot hotel room whilst hiding from a crook. He's just an awesome character and Chandler makes him.

  3. 4 out of 5

    C-shaw

    I bought this after reading reviews by my Goodreads friend, author James Thane. These old potboiler detective stories are so good! * * * * * Ha ha ha! What a delightful little book. The plot is secondary to the dialogue of Philip Marlowe and the other hardboiled characters, to wit: "I called him up from a phone booth. The voice that answered was fat. It wheezed softly, like the voice of a man who had just won a pie-eating contest." "I moved around slowly, like a cat in a strange house. . ." "The room I bought this after reading reviews by my Goodreads friend, author James Thane. These old potboiler detective stories are so good! * * * * * Ha ha ha! What a delightful little book. The plot is secondary to the dialogue of Philip Marlowe and the other hardboiled characters, to wit: "I called him up from a phone booth. The voice that answered was fat. It wheezed softly, like the voice of a man who had just won a pie-eating contest." "I moved around slowly, like a cat in a strange house. . ." "The room was empty. It was full of silence and the memory of a nice perfume." "Miss Harriet Huntress was a nice girl. She knew a few wrong numbers, but who didn't?" "So long, pal. Be pure." [I'm stealing this one for my own parting line!] "I felt terrible. I felt like an amputated leg." "George slid under the wheel and started the big car. It moved away from the curb and around the corner with as much noise as a bill makes in a wallet." "They rode me back into the room without seeming to." "He had an idea and he was holding it like a sick baby." "'Lift the dogs,' [move your butt] Beef said, and stood to one side." The iconic line: "'Trouble is my business,' I said. 'How else would I make a nickel?'" "I lifted a foot to start walking to a taxi half a block down across the street." "The night air was not pure but it was cool."

  4. 4 out of 5

    Barney

    I think a review of the book would be pointless. Just know that this is one of the true headwaters of the River Noir. Anyone who reads Chandler would be well served to get a copy containing Chandler's own introduction (written around 1950) where he looks back at the pulps - which he refers to in the past tense even though they had about 10 more years left in them fighting for rack space -and discusses the transformation of the genre from the mostly British in style iterations to the fully Ameri I think a review of the book would be pointless. Just know that this is one of the true headwaters of the River Noir. Anyone who reads Chandler would be well served to get a copy containing Chandler's own introduction (written around 1950) where he looks back at the pulps - which he refers to in the past tense even though they had about 10 more years left in them fighting for rack space -and discusses the transformation of the genre from the mostly British in style iterations to the fully Americanized versions and why that happened and what was gained. It's one of those very rare moments where you can see that even though Chandler occasionally lost the pure whodunit thread once or twice in his own work he knew exactly what his style was about and what he was doing within the genre in the moment and not just as a series of insights looking back on it all. To me that one introduction, and precisely WHEN he wrote it in the context of the history of noir fiction, seals the deal and makes Chandler essential.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Mohammad Ali

    نمره ی واقعی: سه و نیم من داستان باد سرخ رو بیشتر دوست داشتم. بقیه اشم جالب بود اما جاهایی آدم حس می کرد یه ماسمالی هایی هست. در کل خوندنی بود مترجم یه مقدمه هم در مورد فضای گنگستری آمریکا در چند دهه ی اول قرن بیستم و تأثیرش بر شکل گیری رمان کارآگاهی آمریکایی نوشته که هر چند جزئیات زیادی نداره اما خوبه خوندنش. ترجمه هم من باهاش مشکلی نداشتم و یادم نمی آد وقتایی که سراغ اصلش می رفتم اشتباه خاصی به چشمم اومده باشه

  6. 5 out of 5

    Mizuki

    Raymond Chandler and I don't always have a happy relationship when his novels are put into consideration. I DNF-ed more of his books than managed to finish them in the past. I have to admit Mr. Chandler had a terrific way with writing, his dialogues and his tone are always charming and witty, but his stories can always be a struggle to get through. Now, with his short stories collection Trouble Is My Business mostly because these are all short stories so it takes Mr. Chandler's famous main charac Raymond Chandler and I don't always have a happy relationship when his novels are put into consideration. I DNF-ed more of his books than managed to finish them in the past. I have to admit Mr. Chandler had a terrific way with writing, his dialogues and his tone are always charming and witty, but his stories can always be a struggle to get through. Now, with his short stories collection Trouble Is My Business mostly because these are all short stories so it takes Mr. Chandler's famous main character: private investigator Philip Marlowe in L.A. , a lot faster to get into action and solve the murder mystery than usual. I think the fast pacing does help a lot for me to go over these stories. I just love the noir atmosphere which Mr. Chandler created with seemingly little to no effort! Plus much to my surprise, I notice Mr. Chandler's stories and his MC seem to be a bit more...romantic than I would have expected from an author who is so well known for his 'dark and gritty' hard boiled novels! Last but not least, I really like the world of noir Mr. Chandler had created: dangerous men and equally dangerous women, scums and criminals, everyone has their eyes on the money, everyone and their mothers are all pointing a gun at other people (how typically American!) and the tough-guy PI (Marlowe) always. gotten. beat. up. and. knocked. unconscious. in. every. single. story. LOL PS: I really like the femme fatale tough-as-nail female character in the first story, I like her because she didn't get demonized for her sexuality, her way of life and her greed for the gold; let's face it, almost everyone in the stories are greedy and selfish as fuck, so there is no point singling out women for behaving the same like their male counterparts.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Carla Remy

    Four Pulp magazine novellas. Only one, Red Wind, had I read before. My favorite here is Goldfish (though it does contain some bad fish abuse). The introduction, writing about pulp writing, was done by Chandler in 1950.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Ubiquitousbastard

    Of course I love this, it being a collection of four short stories which were later cannibalized for Chandler's novels, but I admit I wanted it to be longer. The Simple Art of Murder had more stories and a bit more variety, so I definitely prefer it to this, but still, this was a good selection of short stories. Almost nothing outside of Chandler's works makes me imagine scenes in my head so vividly, or to laugh out loud at the sarcasm. I pretty much was laughing every few minutes while reading Of course I love this, it being a collection of four short stories which were later cannibalized for Chandler's novels, but I admit I wanted it to be longer. The Simple Art of Murder had more stories and a bit more variety, so I definitely prefer it to this, but still, this was a good selection of short stories. Almost nothing outside of Chandler's works makes me imagine scenes in my head so vividly, or to laugh out loud at the sarcasm. I pretty much was laughing every few minutes while reading this, and I'm writing the review after my second reading. No other noir can touch Chandler in my opinion, this being just the most perfect example of the genre.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Harold

    Quintessential noir by one of the creators of the genre. Private eye Phillip Marlowe is the archetype of those that followed. This book is four (rather long) short stories. All excellent.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Rob

    3.5 stars. It took me a few years living in Georgia to realize just how much California is in my bones. I grew up a Midwesterner but then spent 14 crucial years – 1995-2009, or age 22 to 36 – on the West Coast. I never made a conscious decision to self-identify as a Californian, but after living in the Atlanta area for a couple years I suddenly realized just how much my time in California had shaped my personality. And now, even though I’ve been in the South for nearly six years, no author takes 3.5 stars. It took me a few years living in Georgia to realize just how much California is in my bones. I grew up a Midwesterner but then spent 14 crucial years – 1995-2009, or age 22 to 36 – on the West Coast. I never made a conscious decision to self-identify as a Californian, but after living in the Atlanta area for a couple years I suddenly realized just how much my time in California had shaped my personality. And now, even though I’ve been in the South for nearly six years, no author takes me back to Los Angeles like Raymond Chandler. When he writes, “There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch,” I immediately think, I know that wind! Even though he’s writing about 1930’s L.A., I read his work and immediately return to late-night Santa Barbara streets, driving home after a show, the marine layer rolling in to slick my arm hanging out the open window and ghost a hazy nimbus around the amber streetlights. The state still haunts me, but under Chandler’s influence it’s not an unwelcome possession. Although I feel pretty firmly that Elmore Leonard is the undisputed master of crime fiction and, more narrowly, James Ellroy has cornered the market on a certain adrenalized, bare-knuckle strain of Los Angeles noir, it’s impossible not to see Chandler as the Rosetta Stone of the modern detective story, with Leonard and Ellroy and Rankin and Lehane and Hiaasen all tracing their lineage back to Chandler’s pitch-black tales of Philip Marlowe and the street-smart broads with whom he associates. It’s been a long time since I last read Chandler – probably fifteen years or more since I closed The Long Goodbye – and the first paragraph of the title story in Trouble Is My Business is just like sinking into a warm bath: "Anna Halsey was about two hundred and forty pounds of middle-aged putty-faced woman in a black tailor-made suit. Her eyes were shiny black shoe buttons, her cheeks were as soft as suet and about the same color. She was sitting behind a black glass desk that looked like Napoleon’s tomb and she was smoking a cigarette in a black holder that was not quite as long as a rolled umbrella. She said: ‘I need a man.’" For my money there’s nothing not to like about that passage, and the rest of the four stories in this collection are just as razor-sharp. If I’m going to be honest, though, the actual plot mechanics are almost beside the point. Chandler admits as much in a forward to the collection, where he says there’s no such thing as a classic mystery story because the only thing that really matters is the denouement, where everything is revealed, and everything that comes before is just process to get to the conclusion. So to that end – and I’ll come back to the kinda sorta problematic denouement theory in a sec – the stories in this collection are composed of more or less interchangeable parts: • Private eye Philip Marlowe as the world-weary narrator • A con involving money (two stories) or pearls (two stories) • A brassy dame with a gun • A scene where Marlowe gets hit in the back of the head with a sap • Two wise-cracking bad guys, one of whom might be garrulous and charismatic, the other taciturn and sullen, and only one of them will be a good shot • The mastermind of the con who isn’t nearly as smart as he thinks he is • A Los Angeles cop who reluctantly lets Marlowe go about his business • One or more scenes involving scotch or rye, which may or may not be set in a bar • Rapid-fire exchanges of dialogue where Marlowe says things like, “Some days I feel like playing smooth and some days I feel like playing it like a waffle iron.” None of this is criticism, mind you. The reason Chandler is so good is that he mixes and matches all these pieces and manages to put them together in novel and exciting ways each time. In one story it’s about a guy who cheats a local mob boss out of $20,000; in another, Marlowe tracks some missing pearls to the Pacific Northwest. Even though we recognize the parts, the thrill is in seeing how Chandler repurposes them from story to story. Everything in this collection crackles with electricity. Everything, that is, except for the denouement Chandler references, the part of the story he views as most vital to its success. This is the only thing in Trouble Is My Business that feels antiquated: the scene where all the principal players are gathered in one room and Marlowe explains the nuts and bolts of everything that’s come before. It’s a variation on what Roger Ebert called The Fallacy of the Talking Killer. You know that tired scene from movies – where the bad guy has the good guy trapped and all he has to do is kill him but he spends five minutes explaining why he’s so bad and then the good guy escapes. It’s kind of the same thing here, where Marlowe has to explain the contortions of the plot so we’ll see everything the way he sees it. It’s a scene that I don’t really see in modern crime fiction, and in these stories it’s always necessary (Chandler is big on convoluted plots), but it also grinds the story to a halt. But again, I don’t really mean this as criticism. It’s an early hallmark of the genre Chandler essentially invented (yes yes, I know – Poe, Doyle, Christie, etc., etc. I’m talking contemporary crime fiction here), and by pointing it out I don’t want to dissuade anyone from reading what is an unequivocally delightful collection of stories. It’s one of those rare occasions where I don’t mind substance taking a back seat to style. Chandler’s not going to make me ponder the meaning of the universe, but he will dazzle me with sheer inventiveness of craft. And of course take me back to California, where gravel roads disappear “around a shoulder of scrub oak and manzanita” and “plumes of pampas grass flare on the side of the hill, like jets of water.” I wasn’t born in California, but reading Chandler is like going home. Read all my reviews at goldstarforrobotboy.net

  11. 5 out of 5

    Debbi Mack

    This book is made up of four of Chandler's novellas or novelettes. They have most of the things I love about Raymond Chandler's novels: hardboiled prose to weep for, enough characters and twists to make your head spin, and nearly indecipherable plots. The fact that I read all the stories and enjoyed them, despite their flaws or even because of them, is a testament to Chandler's legacy as one of the greatest hardboiled crime writers ever.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Elise Stone

    I read Raymond Chandler for the language. The way he uses words is akin to magic. The opening to his short story "Red Wind," which is found in this collection of four, is iconic in detective fiction: There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife an I read Raymond Chandler for the language. The way he uses words is akin to magic. The opening to his short story "Red Wind," which is found in this collection of four, is iconic in detective fiction: There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands' necks. Anything can happen. If you don't get goosebumps reading that passage, I have to doubt whether you're human. He, along with Dashiell Hammett, were responsible for a whole sub genre. If some of what they wrote now sounds cliche, you have to remember it's because they invented it and dozens of writers followed in their path. But the stories are starting to show their age. Chandler was born in 1888 and published his first story in 1933. Some of his marvelous language is slang that is no longer in use, making the references obscure and stopping the flow of the stories. Reading these stories reminded me of reading Shakespeare in school, with a wonderful English teacher who could put the language and references in context with the history and culture of the Elizabethan Age. Except I had no teacher explaining the references in Chandler's stories. The other thing I noticed was the amount of drinking and smoking in the stories. Philip Marlowe, his detective, drinks any time of day or night and seems none the worse for wear despite this habit. We live in different times and smoking and excessive drinking have fallen out of fashion. So I give this book four stars instead of five. But I'm still in awe of the writing.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Tony

    TROUBLE IS MY BUSINESS. (various; this ed. 2006). Raymond Chandler. ****. This is a collection of twelve short stories by Chandler that had previously been published in either “Black Mask” or “Dime Detective” between 1936 and 1939. They all involve the adventures of various private eyes, not all of whom are Philip Marlowe. While researching his stories on the internet, I was surprised at how many of these stories later became incorporated in one form or another into his novels. While he was doing TROUBLE IS MY BUSINESS. (various; this ed. 2006). Raymond Chandler. ****. This is a collection of twelve short stories by Chandler that had previously been published in either “Black Mask” or “Dime Detective” between 1936 and 1939. They all involve the adventures of various private eyes, not all of whom are Philip Marlowe. While researching his stories on the internet, I was surprised at how many of these stories later became incorporated in one form or another into his novels. While he was doing that, he also managed to change most of his other detectives into the Philip Marlowe persona. The stories included are: Finger Man, 1934, Black Mask Killer in the Rain, 1935, Black Mask The Man Who Liked Dogs, 1936, Black Mask Goldfish, 1936, Black Mask The Curtain, 1936, Black Mask Try the Girl, 1937, Black Mask Mandarin’s Jade, 1937, Dime Detective Red Wind, 1938, Di9me Detective Bay City Blues, 1938, Dime Detective The Lady in the Lake, 1939, Dime Detective Trouble is my Business, 1939, Dime Detective The Pencil, 1965, Argosy If you are trying to find out what all the fuss is about and why Chandler is so highly revered by crime writers everywhere, these stories would be a good place to start. They represent Chandler at his focused best. All of his trademarked writing techniques are used in them. I personally think that the novel was his real calling, but that’s only one opinion. These are still good reads, once you’ve adjusted your mind for the differences in the settings in time. Recommended.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Matt

    chosen as extra credit for class. I wanted to continue reading Chandler, might even become a completest! I think these are some of the earlier stories which Chandler sort of made his name with before he came out with the limpid and inexhaustible "Big Sleep"...they are all Philip Marlowe stories and they sort of have that almost-there quality which you can see in some writer's early work...they have a style, a vision, but it's not quite realized yet. For some reason I take a lot of solace in read chosen as extra credit for class. I wanted to continue reading Chandler, might even become a completest! I think these are some of the earlier stories which Chandler sort of made his name with before he came out with the limpid and inexhaustible "Big Sleep"...they are all Philip Marlowe stories and they sort of have that almost-there quality which you can see in some writer's early work...they have a style, a vision, but it's not quite realized yet. For some reason I take a lot of solace in reading that kind of work sometimes. It's encouraging, I think, to see mediocre to outright bad writing from really great authors. Less discouraging when you go through your own crap... Forgot to mention that as much as I love Chandler, these stories were more dryly amusing than as engaging as the novels I've read. I can imagine a guy at a gas station in Cedar Rapids or Cactus Rat Gulch in, say, the mid-50's nodding over some crumbly paperbacks or a creased folio of Black Dog Dead Hand and Dame fiction or whatever. "The Goldfish" was the story that really got me leaning forward- that one's just a beaut. Definitely recommended, if you want to dip a toe. The rest? Meh.

  15. 5 out of 5

    David

    I've read a lot of parody of this genre without actually having read much of the genre itself. To tell the truth, I had fun. Things may not really change much for Marlowe in any of the stories, but there is a tangible thrill to reading. I'm not sure I'd go looking for any more, but I did like these stories.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Gavin Smith

    This is a great little collection of four quick and punchy Marlowe stories. It's the second time I've read Trouble is My Business but a few years down the line I found that I hadn't really remembered anything so it still felt pretty fresh to me. None of the novellas here really rise to the heights of Chandler's best work, but then none are as confusingly plotted, either. There are enough dry one-liners to keep fans of Chandler's style entertained and I feel that, somehow, these four stories pres This is a great little collection of four quick and punchy Marlowe stories. It's the second time I've read Trouble is My Business but a few years down the line I found that I hadn't really remembered anything so it still felt pretty fresh to me. None of the novellas here really rise to the heights of Chandler's best work, but then none are as confusingly plotted, either. There are enough dry one-liners to keep fans of Chandler's style entertained and I feel that, somehow, these four stories presented together offer a greater level of insight into the character of Marlowe himself, perhaps because he seems more assured here than in the grander plots of longer novels. When Marlowe (and the reader) isn't lost in some intricate plot triggered by wealthy Los Angelinos but rather down among Marlowe's own world of middlemen, hustlers, and cops, he can exert a greater degree of control and display a more proactive side to his personality. Marlowe becomes less of a cypher for the world around him and more of a protagonist in his own right. Trouble is My Business, therefor, makes a pretty good starting point for readers new to Chandler. These stories put the Marlowe of The Big Sleep and The Long Goodbye into more extensive context and they are fun to boot! Any of the four stories here would make for a pretty great film. Don't know who I'd cast as Marlowe though...

  17. 4 out of 5

    Cathy DuPont

    A collection of four short stories (which I love by the way) I just couldn't get into these except maybe one. This was due probably more my lack of concentration rather than the story or writing because Chandler's as good as ever. I shouldn't read when I have other stuff on my mind so I'm putting this aside to read again another time. One story did stand out more than the other three but all in all, Chandler's at his noir best with the bad women being really bad and same with the men. They all s A collection of four short stories (which I love by the way) I just couldn't get into these except maybe one. This was due probably more my lack of concentration rather than the story or writing because Chandler's as good as ever. I shouldn't read when I have other stuff on my mind so I'm putting this aside to read again another time. One story did stand out more than the other three but all in all, Chandler's at his noir best with the bad women being really bad and same with the men. They all seem to have a stake in trying to manipulate others to do their bidding for money. It's all about money, of course. Usually money they are not entitled to. And Chandler, bless his heart, wants to do the right thing whether it's giving back to the deserving or contributing to 'the cause' i.e. Salvation Army, Retired Police Officers or other benevolent organizations. Chandler's Phillip Marlowe is considered the first of the modern P.I. With Marlowe they're no longer low-lifes without a conscience, 'what's in it for me' characters. They're real fellows who have a heart and want to do what's right by everyone. I'm glad I found Chandler. I've enjoyed his books. Apparently his writing is studied in lit classes since many of the books I've read have school notes throughout. Chandler brings life to Marlowe's surroundings and gives a sense of place. Apparently he was the author who brought detective series and mysteries into the modern era. *********** After finishing The Long Goodbye, taking another look at a couple of these short stories I missed or obviously didn't like at first glance. Will give it another try, in my 'to review' stack.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Mackenzie Brown

    The undisputed master of noir and pulp fiction. Of the four stories featured in this volume none are sub standard when compared to the novels featuring Chandler’s LA private eye Philip Marlow, who swims in a cesspool of double crossing criminals, femme fatales and crooked cops. Filled with classic metaphorical phrases straight from the hard boiled crime dictionary that Chandler helped create. If you’re a fan of John D MacDonald, Ross Macdonald, Robert B Parker or Robert Crais, or any other writers The undisputed master of noir and pulp fiction. Of the four stories featured in this volume none are sub standard when compared to the novels featuring Chandler’s LA private eye Philip Marlow, who swims in a cesspool of double crossing criminals, femme fatales and crooked cops. Filled with classic metaphorical phrases straight from the hard boiled crime dictionary that Chandler helped create. If you’re a fan of John D MacDonald, Ross Macdonald, Robert B Parker or Robert Crais, or any other writers who work within this genre, you must read Chandler to at least experience the evolution of pulp fiction.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Scott

    Trouble is my Business contains 4 Phillip Marlowe stories previously published in the pulp magazines of the day.overall these are a fine example of Chandler's hard boiled fiction in novella form. each story is remarkable on their own but my personal favorite is “Red Wind”. this story is a nearly perfect representation of Marlowe's code of honor, has great characters,and a fantastic little twist at the end. a lot of quality buried in a unassuming little short story.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Scott

    Great set of four longer stories featuring P.I. Philip Marlowe in all his hard-nosed, whiskey swilling glory. Chandler for me is the ultimate noir voice, the attitude and craft that defines the genre for me. Each story has the same elements - Marlowe played for a sap, double crosses, booze and cigarettes, guns and sucker punches, all wrapped up in a nice bow at the end. Though the elements are familiar, it's the narrative from Marlowe that makes for intoxicating reading.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Robert Zoltan

    I adored this collection. It made me realize that I like Chandler's short stories of Marlowe better than the novels. And not, I think I may like his short stories better than Hammett's. But who needs to decide a favorite between such wonderful things?

  22. 5 out of 5

    Steven Malone

    Hard-boiled Phillip Marlowe on the case. What can be better? Chandler brings his genius with the language once more into his genre. These short stories will not let you down.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Donna

    This is really a set of four Philip Marlowe "long stories." Absolutely incredible. I wish there were a couple dozen more.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Michael

    Lamentably, I only got the title story, not the whole collection. It was good, though! In a really-good-pulp-fiction sort of way. UPDATE: I went looking for the rest of the stories online, and discovered that there are a number of different Chandler collections called "Trouble is My Business." I read all of one and bits of others on my phone. They were good, in a really-good-pulp-fiction sort of way.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Christine

    I can never resist the siren call of Raymond Chandler. In my opinion, his work defines the noir genre of mysteries. It just doesn't get any better. Trouble is My Business is a collection of four short stories - Trouble is My Business, Finger Man, Goldfish, and Red Wind - that are classic Chandler. Rife with 50s slang and the most stripped-down descriptions imaginable, each is a the literary equivalent of a shot of scotch. The kind that leaves you feeling like you've had a mouthful of campfire sm I can never resist the siren call of Raymond Chandler. In my opinion, his work defines the noir genre of mysteries. It just doesn't get any better. Trouble is My Business is a collection of four short stories - Trouble is My Business, Finger Man, Goldfish, and Red Wind - that are classic Chandler. Rife with 50s slang and the most stripped-down descriptions imaginable, each is a the literary equivalent of a shot of scotch. The kind that leaves you feeling like you've had a mouthful of campfire smoke. Descriptions like "...one of those mustaches that get stuck under your fingernail," (12) "Dead as a pickled walnut," (144) and "...a mixed quartet tore what was left of the night into small strips and did what they could to make the strips miserable," (194) pepper the stories liberally. Chandler peels away every iota that isn't vital to the plot, buffs the remainder on his sleeve and sends it out into the world in all its dim, scruffy glory. That's one of the things about his writing which really appeals to me, but if you prefer opulent, lush sentences and pages of descriptions and details leaking out of the binding when you tilt the book sideways then Chandler may not be for you. I'd still encourage you to read at least one of his stories - especially if you're a mystery buff or a fan of works set in the WWII era -because he defines a genre and sometimes works like that are famous for a reason. Go take one of his stories out from a library. It'll be fun. If nothing else you can spend an afternoon googling slang - or maybe ask your local octogenarian? and impressing your friends with your new vocabulary. Educational and fun, that's Chandler. Content warnings: (thankfully infrequent) use of racial slurs, and the standard dated terminology used for minorities in the 50s. Some violence, but overall very minimal descriptions of gore and suffering. If you like mysteries but have a tough time with bloodshed Chandler's stories might be just what you're looking for.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Erik Erickson

    I really enjoyed this. It's really a treat to drink from THE source of classic detective pulp fiction. I haven't read Dashiel Hammett, but if he's as essential as Chandler claims in his forward, their work must be the pinnacle of the genre. This is not my first detective novel. I took a circuitous route to Chandler starting with several of John Schwartzwelder's spoofs of the genre, and from there went to Jonathan Lethem's Gun, With Occasional Music and and an anonymous pulp tome. All are excelle I really enjoyed this. It's really a treat to drink from THE source of classic detective pulp fiction. I haven't read Dashiel Hammett, but if he's as essential as Chandler claims in his forward, their work must be the pinnacle of the genre. This is not my first detective novel. I took a circuitous route to Chandler starting with several of John Schwartzwelder's spoofs of the genre, and from there went to Jonathan Lethem's Gun, With Occasional Music and and an anonymous pulp tome. All are excellent in their own rights. Beyond the written word, I had also seen many classic film noir pictures and listened to a lot of radio plays where Humphrey Bogart plays both Chandler's Philip Marlowe and Hammett's Sam Spade characters. But it's so good to be at the beginning. I suppose to travel further back would require Sir Conan Doyle's stories.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Pamela

    "There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands’ necks. Anything can happen. You can even get a full glass of beer at a cocktail lounge." And THAT is Chandler.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Gieliza

    5 stars! Philip Marlowe, how so awesome? A solid collection of hardboiled mysteries. My individual ratings for the stories - Trouble is My Business - 4 stars Finger Man - 4 stars Goldfish - 4.5 stars Red Wind - 5 stars Introduction by Philip Marlowe - all the stars in the world because it is that good. Highly recommended!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Edgar

    Had read Chandler in translations, but I see now they were very deficient. Marlowe's contemplative sarcasm and not-give-a-fuck-ness were lost. And that style is extremely important--is what makes these quintessentially noir stories not only genre-founding, but very fun to read. An extremely rare combination.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Mark Birchall

    Although not a lover of short stories I found these a must read as is anything by chandler. Private eyes , femme fatales, booze, guns, murder, mayhem,torture,fist fights, car chases,snappy dialogue . Can't beat it just read it ! Great hard boiled dirty noir from the best in the business .

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