“Dead men are heavier than broken hearts.”
Raymond Chandler is the fedora-topped man’s man answer to the trashy romance novel. Full of hard-biting dialogue, dark alleyways and fiery lithe blondes, concealed pistols, racketeers, and cheap cigarette smoke — The Big Sleep is detective pulp noir at its finest. Bonus points if you put on some swanky, slow-paced brass music in the background.
“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. I was part of that nastiness now.
Set up on the beach or pour yourself a glass of cheap whiskey and indulge in night of suspense, with zero pretense of being anything close to high-brow literature. Guaranteed to be as ridiculously overdone as the metaphors filling every page.