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Raymond Chandlerwas one of the most original and enduring crime novelists of the twentieth century. Yet much of his pre-writing life, including his unconventional marriage, has remained shrouded in mystery. In this compelling, wholly original book, Judith Freeman sets out to solve the puzzle of who Chandler was and how he became the writer who would create in Philip Marlowe an icon of American culture. Freeman uncovers vestiges of the Los Angeles that was terrain and inspiration for Chandler's imagination, including the nearly two dozen apartments and houses the Chandlers moved into and out of over the course of two decades. She also uncovers the life of Cissy Pascal, the older, twice-divorced woman Chandler married in 1924, who would play an essential role in how he came to understand not only his female characters--and Marlowe's relation to them--but himself as well. A revelation of a marriage that was a wellspring of need, illusion, and creativity,The Long Embraceprovides us with a more complete picture of Raymond Chandler's life and art than any we have had before. From the Hardcover edition.