Only to Sleep by Lawrence Osborne

Only to Sleep

The new Philip Marlowe novel, from Lawrence Osborne, a master of the psychological thrillerIn this brilliant new novel, commissioned by the Raymond Chandler estate, the acclaimed author Lawrence Osborne gives us a piercing psychological study of one of literature's most beloved and enduring detectives, told with a contemporary twist. It is an unforgettable addition to the Raymond Chandler canon.The year is 1989, the Reagan presidency has just com...

Details Only to Sleep

TitleOnly to Sleep
Release DateJul 24th, 2018
PublisherHogarth Press
GenreMystery, Fiction, Crime, Thriller, Mystery Thriller

Reviews Only to Sleep

  • Carol
    2017 was the year I discovered Lawrence Osborne and my reading choices were summarily upended. By the end of the year, I had read 4 of his books – 2 fiction and 2 non-fiction – and, so far, in 2018, I’ve read 2 more. I’m purposefully leaving several back-catalog options available lest I sink helplessly into a deep funk when there are no more Osborne works left unread. (The foregoing disclosure is far more significant for purposes of asses...
  • Faith
    "Carnivals were where old man could shine a little behind their masks and pretend that their vital spirits still worked." In 1989, Philip Marlowe is now 72, retired, living in Baja and contemplating the ways things have changed, not for the better, from the 1950s. He has a bad leg and is not particularly robust, but when he is approached by a couple of insurance investigators he agrees to take on one last case. Donald Zinn drowned in Mexico, maki...
  • Dave
    Chandler’s Marlowe is a towering figure in the lore of hardboiled gumshoes. He is so important to the literary genre that he stands nearly seventy feet tall and when he speaks the earth quivers. For such a towering figure, Chandler only bequeathed us seven full novels and a fistful of short stories. More recently, a host of writers have attempted to add to the Philip Marlowe lore, paying homage to Chandler’s work. Osborne offers us, not anoth...
  • Marjorie
    At 72 years of age, Philip Marlowe has retired. But when he’s offered a case by an insurance company, he decides to have one last adventure. They want Marlowe to investigate the death of Donald Zinn. They’ve paid Zinn’s widow a very large sum of money but something doesn’t seem right and they think Marlowe is the man to get to the bottom of it. Who doesn’t know and love Philip Marlowe? What a perfect delight to have an author such as La...
  • Ronald Koltnow
    This Raymond Chandler pastiche features the aging Philip Marlowe, in his 70s, on his last, we assume, investigation. It is certainly more Lawrence Osborne than Raymond Chandler; it reads in part like a travelogue, with attention to the details of place and custom. The good news is, as Osborne is one of our greatest living writers, this is a spellbinding tale of detours on the last highway. I chose to not think of the central character as Marlowe ...
  • Matthew
    Thanks to First to Read for the advance copy.Philip Marlowe in his dotage is not a pretty picture. Then again, he's still snooping about in a world that isn't so pretty itself. That he maintains any sly wit is impressive. However, without his penchant for, and selfless skill at, falling for the femme fatale, there would be no story. He maintains that dream-like progression through the events of the case, a clue here and there pushing the narrativ...
  • Sheryl
    For some reason I just couldn’t get into this novel. I love Phillip Marlow and was looking forward to reading this novel, but when you feel like you are reading a book just to finish it, you shouldn’t punish yourself by making yourself stick with it. It was well written, I don’t know if it was setting or what that made this a difficult read for me.
  • Maine Colonial
    Thanks to the publisher, Hogarth, for providing a free ARC.If you’re familiar with Raymond Chandler’s Philip Marlowe series, you know the laconic, melancholic style and the sun-blasted noir-ish atmosphere. Now imagine that Marlowe is retired and living in Mexico, on the Baja coast. He’s getting to be an old man, 72 with some creaky bones and occasional tremors, and he’s frequently sleepless or, when he does sleep, bothered by strange drea...
  • Benjamin Thomas
    It is always a heady prospect for an author to step into the shoes of another acclaimed author, especially one such as the beloved Raymond Chandler. And to then write a story featuring none other than Phillip Marlowe, perhaps the greatest of hardboiled gumshoes. That, my friends, is tempting the fates. But Lawrence Osborne is certainly no fly-by-night author and in this novel, I think he does the character, (and by extension, Chandler himself), j...
  • Shoshana
    When I was seven years old my father was thirty-eight. His birthday was coming up and I did not want him to turn thirty-nine. He said he couldn’t help it, and that was when I first understood that my father could not do everything. Philip Marlowe, it seemed to me, was also eternally thirty-eight. Until this book. In “Only to Sleep,” Philip Marlowe is seventy-two, retired in Mexico, slowly drinking himself to death and using a cane. But he i...
  • Joan
    It's been decades since I have read a Marlowe novel. This one has a slower pace than I recall of the originals. I felt the plot, while possible, just took a long time to get to the important points. Marlowe seemed to have lost his edge. He went some places and entered some dangerous situations that did not seem very smart to me. Marlowe is a dark character sloshing in alcohol. I had hoped he would at least be a moral character, doing the right th...
  • Lizz Axnick
    I confess in my English major education that I was never exposed to Raymond Chandler or his famous detective, Phillip Marlowe. I see now this was a tragic oversight and he should be included somewhere, perhaps omitting one of the moldy authors whose tales are no longer relevant and inserting Chandler as a much better substitute. I admit I thought this book was hard to get into. The Spanish interspersed in the text got on my nerves, especially whe...
  • Angie
    This was a great story, a winding detective plot through Mexico, around corner after corner. And as we round each corner, another old gringo awaits us. Lots and lots of old men, old rakes, old criminals, charming and dangerous. This is the country for old men.I thoroughly enjoyed the novel, but I can't answer to whether it's true to the Marlowe tradition -- I haven't read the Marlowe books, but I'm interested to look into them now. It certainly h...
  • Allen Pasternak
    The most endearing qualities about Philip Marlowe were his extreme ethics and cynicism, both watered down here. Gone also are the atmospheric descriptions of L.A. in the 40s - an era that has passed, and most of this novel is set in Mexico. I think what I personally miss most is Philip Marlowe’s youth. There are those such as Philip Marlowe, James Dean, and Jim Morrison who weren’t intended to become old, and a contemporary, 72 year old Marlo...
  • Mary
    The author's note at the end: "I have tried to stay faithful to the bewilderingly dreamlike plots of Chandler because it has always seemed to me that they incarnate the qualities of both fairy tale and nightmare to which he aspired." I think this sums it up. I'm not sure about all the details of the plot but the atmosphere of the book was great. I could picture the towns, the bars, the villa, the churches, the streets. And the idea of Philip Marl...
  • Paula Lyle
    This is a fine enough private eye noir, but it didn't feel like Marlowe to me. As a remembrance of things past it's interesting. Old age really is different than what comes before and meeting it with grace is a full time job. The mystery makes about as much sense as the original books. People come and go and some of them get killed. The problem is that Marlowe got old. There is way too much time discussing his age and health (I don't believe Marl...
  • Patrick C.
    This is a "new" Phillip Marlow novel that was commissioned by the Raymond Chandler estate. I believe it lives up to the Raymond Chandler oeuvre, and, if you are/were a fan, I recommend this book highly. I read all the Raymond Chandler novels, and this is as good as most.Here, Marlow is retired for about ten years (age 72) and living in Mexico - he accepts one more commission, just for the experience (and, the money!), and it lives up to his past ...
  • Alfred J Martinsen
    Philip Marlowe RepriseOsborne captured the essence of Marlowe's character perfectly. Outstanding reprise, beautifully written - even when completely over the top with Chandler inspired similes, descriptions and twists.
  • Hannah
    This is a fine novel but it is certainly not a Philip Marlowe novel
  • John Wilson
    A bit underwhelming.