Dashiell Hammett. Nightmare Town (1999) 396 pp.
Contents: Nightmare Town; House Dick; Ruffian’s Wife; The Man Who Killed
Dan Odams; Night Shots; Zigzags of Treachery; The Assistant Murderer; His
Brother’s Keeper; Two Sharp Knives; Death on Pine Street; The Second-Story
Angel; Afraid of a Gun; Tom, Dick or Harry; One Hour; Who Killed Bob Teal?;
A Man Called Spade; Too Many Have Lived; They Can Only Hang You Once; A
Man Named Thin; *The First Thin Man.
Twenty long-unavailable short stories (seven Continental Op stories;
three Sam Spade stories), several with San Francisco settings. Most notable
in this collection is the first publication of ten chapters Hammett wrote
in 1930—called here “The First Thin Man”—that bear clear similarities to
The Thin Man, published three years later. However, this time the
protagonist is San Francisco detective John Guild, investigating a murder
in the village of Hell Bend, a short distance from San Francisco; the investigation
brings him back to the city.
*1st book publication