La Jolla: 1950. First Draft. Wrappers. First draft typescript (the original manuscript), signed on the front cover in ink, “Raymond Chandler original” and gently touched with a few of his handwritten changes and corrections. Bound in are 2 pages of typed notes to himself and queries to Hitchcock (325 words) about the path he is taking as he begins the process of rethinking Patricia Highsmith’s first novel in the direction conceived by Hitchcock and partially realized here. Hitchcock took Chandler’s draft, added more action and a new 3rd act (though the merry-go-round is in Chandler’s script on page 35) and had it rewritten by Czenzi Ormonde before filming, with both Chandler and Ormonde getting screen credit. Original wrappers, brad bound, complete (144 pages) and in very good condition. Very good. Item #239
A joyous discovery. Lengthy Chandler manuscripts are rare, and this is a heretofore lost piece of his high art, riddled with piercing psychological insights, existential malaise, and the sharp dialog for which he is renown. The characters, setting and plotline are from Highsmith’s novel, which accents inner tortures that harken Dostoyevsky. It’s one of the fine conceits in all of literature, a dark, extended metaphor (I’ll make your grass greener if you’ll green-up mine) with a complex logic, conceding likeness while being strongly conscious of unlikeness. Both book and film juxtapose, usurp and manipulate images and ideas unexpectedly, and invite the reader/viewer into a more sophisticated understanding of comparisons, where ingenuity is more striking than justness.