RARA-AVIS: Re: E. Howard Hunt & Raymond Chandler

From: JIM DOHERTY ( jimdohertyjr@yahoo.com)
Date: 29 Jan 2007


Re your question below:

"When did Killer in the Rain, the anthology collecting Chandler's cannibalized stories, come out? I'm guessing not until after Chandler died. I picked up a Ballantine paperback of it in the '70s, along with the novels and Simple Art of Murder broken into three
(love the painted covers of that printing). Did it first come out in hardback?"

Early to mid-60's in hardback, several years after Chandler's passing in '59. Philip Durham wrote a foreword describing how Chandler would combine and expand his short stories and explaining how Chandler was adamant about not wanting his "cannibilized" stories reprinted but now, several years after his death, it was possible to collect them.

There was one non-cannibilized story included in KITR,
"No Crime in the Mountains." Chandler considered it for TSAM, but rejected it, deciding that its WW2 espionage plot dated it too much and he didn't want to be bothered updating it to a Cold War espionage plot.

This is sometimes erroneously cited (Durham did so in his intro) as one of the sources, along with "Bay City Blues" and the short story version of "The Lady in the Lake," of the book-length THE LADY IN THE LAKE. If you read it though, there's really nothing it has in common with the book, plotwise or scene-wise. It does have in common with THE LADY IN THE LAKE a rural setting and a colorful rustic policeman, but both these elements were already present in "The Lady in the Lake" so there was no need for Chandler to turn to
"No Crime" to plunder them. Besides, his letters show that he was considering it for TSAM and his rejection was based, not on its "cannibilization," but on its dated wartime theme.

Gee, I love these chances to show off my erudition.


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