Raymond Chandler
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Nobody but Chandler could have created a private eye hero as cool as Philip Marlowe, but writers have been trying ever since the author's precedent-setting '40s crime novels were published. Along with Dashiell Hammett, Chandler is revered as a noir father figure; his creation of a romantic L.A. full of dangerous women and crooked characters is so woven into modern consciousness that it's easy to forget that it was fictional.

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