“Samuel Spade’s jaw was long and bony, his chin a jutting v under the more flexible v of his mouth.” Thus begins The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett, widely acclaimed to be one of the greatest crime fiction novels ever written. The words leap from a crisp white page, in a beautifully cloth-bound, red hardback. There’s the silhouette of a creepy falcon on the cover, with a bright yellow eye. And the book lives in a cardboard slipcase featuring an illustration of Spade, the falcon and the story’s femme fatale Brigid O’Shaughnessy by David Eccles.
Where did we find this amazing specimen? It was in a mystery package sent in to Crime Fiction Lover by The Folio Society. Let’s take a closer look…
Above, the box that arrived by courier. It’s so unassuming it makes the carpet look good!
Inside the box from The Folio Society, three tidy looking black gift boxes. The Folio Society specialises in creating high quality printings of classic books. Here’s a quote from the Society’s mission statement: “Our pleasure in reading is enhanced by the book itself, in which typography, illustration, paper, printing and binding all play a part in creating a harmonious whole. In a world of declining publishing standards, where most books are cheaply printed, and bound using low-grade materials, The Folio Society resolutely sets store by traditional values of excellence; for our designers and production personnel the term ‘quite good’ means ‘no good’: only the best is good enough.” That gets the thumbs up from Crime Fiction Lover.
Here’s a look inside one of the three boxes we were sent – a slipcase containing a gorgeous copy of The Postman Always Rings Twice by James M Cain. It’s one of 14 crime releases by The Folio Society. Others include boxed sets of Patricia Highsmith’s Ripley books, and The Dorothy L Sayers Mysteries collection, and a set by Agatha Christie. You can see all their crime thrillers here.
Above you can see The Postman Always Rings Twice with its cover illustration by Patrick Leger. It was released last year.
And here’s a look at Cover Her Face by Baroness PD James, with its cleverly designed cover by Jonathan Burton. Each book also has six or seven internal plates.
The image above is a look inside The Postman Always Rings Twice. A book like this sells for £22.95 to £28.95. Keep them in mind – they make great gifts for crime fiction lovers.
Finally, the above image shows all three books in all their glory. Would you like to own one of them? Then head over to our Facebook page where we’ll be giving them away in online draws. Good luck.