New Dashiell Hammett Short Story

Dashiell Hammett, who along with Raymond Chandler, brought the detective novel into a modern noir environment while practically inventing “hard-boiled” has a new short story being published by The Strand Magazine.

Now, from the long-deceased author of The Maltese Falcon and The Thin Man, comes a never-before-published short story: “So I Shot Him.” It’s suspenseful, full of secrets no one’s telling, and — according to Andrew Gulli, editor of the mystery magazine that’s publishing the story — somewhat more than what you might think of as vintage Hammett.

“Vintage in that you have the great vivid characterization that Dashiell Hammett is so famous for,” Gulli tells NPR’s Robert Siegel. “The terse dialogue, and the great tension that he ratchets up. But it’s not vintage in that there’s a lot of psychological elements to it. There’s also even a bit of a literary feel.”

Gulli describes the story as a cross between Hitchcock and F. Scott Fitzgerald, with a plot featuring one man who is afraid to swim encountering another man who is trying to get him to do just that. The short story is available to read in the 2011 winter/spring edition.

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