The Big Sleep - Raymond Chandler 1939 - Alfred A. Knopf, New York - First Edition What did it matter where you lay once you were dead? In a dirty sump or in a marble tower on the top of a high hill? You were dead, you were sleeping the big sleep, you were not bothered by things like that. Oil and water were the same as wind and air to you. You just slept the big sleep, not caring about the nastiness of how you died or where you fell.’

Chandler's first book and the introduction to the world of the famed private eye, Philip Marlowe, and established Chandler as the master of the 'hard-boiled' detective novel. The basis for the 1946 film starring Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, and an endless source of private eye quotes.

It seemed like a nice neighborhood to have bad habits in’.

A lovely bright copy, and absolutely no sign of restoration, rare and honest as you can expect this ‘dust jacket’ to be in a world where its going out of style (apologies). Housed in a custom clamshell cloth case.
  Only 5,000 copies of the first printing were produced.

Dead men are heavier than broken hearts.’

"'
Down these mean streets a man must go who is not himself mean, who is neither tarnished nor afraid.... He is the hero; he is everything. He must be a complete man and a common man and yet an unusual man.' This is the Code of the Private Eye as defined by Raymond Chandler in his 1944 essay 'The Simple Act of Murder.' Such a man was Philip Marlowe, private eye, an educated, heroic, streetwise, rugged individualist and the hero of Chandler's first novel, The Big Sleep. This work established Chandler as the master of the 'hard-boiled' detective novel, and his articulate and literary style of writing won him a large audience, which ranged from the man in the street to the most sophisticated intellectual. Marlowe subsequently appeared in a series of extremely popular novels, among them The Lady in the Lake, The Long Goodbye, and Farewell, My Lovely" - Elizabeth Diefendorf, editor, The New York Public Library's Books of the Century (112).

Selected as one of Time Magazine's
All-Time 100 Novels, with the following review: "'I was neat, clean, shaved and sober, and I didn't care who knew it. I was everything the well-dressed private detective ought to be.' This sentence, from the first paragraph of The Big Sleep, marks the last time you can be fully confident that you know what's going on. The first novel by Raymond Chandler, who at the time was a 51-year-old former oil company executive, is a mosaic of shadows, a dark tracery of forking paths. Along them wanders Philip Marlowe, a cynical, perfectly hard-boiled private investigator hired by an old millionaire to find the husband of his beautiful, bitchy wildcat daughter. Marlowe is tough and determined, and he does his best to be a good guy, but there are no true heroes in Chandler's sun-baked, godforsaken Los Angeles, and every plot turn reveals how truly twisted the human heart is."

References: Bruccoli,
Raymond Chandler: A Descriptive Bibliography A1.1.a. Cooper & Pike 76.
pp. [8] 277 [1 Printers Note][2]. In publisher’s orange cloth.
  Condition: Near fine, two gatherings loose as from production, in very good jacket, wear to edges, 3cm chip to upper corner of rear panel.   Ref: 106507   Price: HK$ 70,000