"The first, finest, and most famous adventure of Nick and Nora Charles, involving an unknown number of "perfect" crimes and two lovely girsl fighting over Nick --- and Nora never losing her cool. Dashiell Hammett is the originator of today's most popular mystery fiction, the novel of suspense and detection. Out of his experiences as a Pinkerton Detective, Hammett created the characters of Sam Spade and Nick Charles, on who are based all the tough bullet-chewing private eyes. His plots are new and realistic. They have been continuously imitated by never equalled."