The Glass Key

  • $3,250.00
    Unit price per 

Author: Samuel Dashiell Hammett (1894-1961)

Year: 1931

Publisher: Alfred A Knopf

Place: New York and London


[8]+282+[1, blank]+[1, note on type] pages. Small octavo (7 1/2" x 5 1/4") bound in original publisher's light green cloth, spine and front stamped in dark red and green, dark green broken key ornament at front board, dark green publisher's stamp at rear; top edge of text block stained purplish-red; original pictorial, first issue dust jacket with description of the book printed on front flap. First edition.

The Glass Key is a novel by American writer Dashiell Hammett. It was first published as a serial in Black Mask magazine in 1930, then was collected in 1931 (in London; the American edition followed 3 months later). It tells the story of a gambler and racketeer, Ned Beaumont, whose devotion to Paul Madvig, a crooked political boss, leads him to investigate the murder of a local senator's son as a potential gang war brews. Hammett dedicated the novel to his onetime lover Nell Martin. There have been two US film adaptations (1935 and 1942) of the novel. A radio adaptation starring Orson Welles aired on March 10, 1939, as part of his Campbell Playhouse series. The book was also a major influence on the Coen brothers' 1990 film Miller's Crossing, about a gambler who is a right-hand man to a corrupt political boss and their involvement in a brewing gang war. (Wikipedia)


Spine ends starting to fray; back-strip and board edges tanned; moderate soiling to boards; slight wear to bottom edges of boards; corners bumped and rubbed. End papers and text block softly browned with age. Jacket rubbed and worn, chipping at spine and flap fold ends; folds deeply creased; faint foxing at verso else about very good in a better than good jacket.

We Also Recommend