Hellman and Hammett: The Legendary Passion of Lillian Hellman and Dashiell Hammett

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9780060984311: Hellman and Hammett: The Legendary Passion of Lillian Hellman and Dashiell Hammett

Playwright Lillian Hellman and author Dashiell Hammett are two of the 20th century's most intriguing literary personalities. The scintillating details of their unconventional relationship are revealed by a NEW YORK TIMES bestselling biographer who not only knew Hellman, but had unprecedented access to her personal papers and closest friends.

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Despite past sentiment that writers Lillian Hellman and Dashiell Hammett should be celebrated--for their writing and societal escapades--Joan Mellen reveals that deceit and insecurity founded their relationship, and the only real loyalty they possessed was for Stalin. As unregenerate Stalinists, they publicly endorsed the verdicts in the Moscow purge trials and never recanted their oft-stated belief that the Soviet Union under Stalin was, "the ideal democratic state." While Hammett will be remembered along with Raymond Chandler for his detective fiction, Hellman's work, according to Mellen, was her attempt to be like him rather than to shape her own identity.

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