Hammett: Slick Dannay Blurbs from EQMM

Today Evan Lewis dropped Part 1 of a new series in which he shows off the little introductory blurbs Frederick Dannay gave to various Hammett stories as he reprinted them in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine.

They’re probably different than the blurbs Dannay gave the same stories when he released his ten volumes of collected Hammett fiction. You can do the detective work on that angle, for your own amusement. Dannay didn’t have any trouble knocking out the slick verbiage.

In any case, his half historical half pure promo stuff is fun to read — I’ve said before that Dannay’s books-about-books material ranks close to the magisterial Books About Books I collect from the great Chicago bookman Vincent Starrett.

Starrett ultimately had more book collections of such material see print, but given all the blurbs in EQMM I suppose Dannay may have done equal wordage or more — but then not all of Starrett’s many newspaper columns have been collected.

Could be a horse race.

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