Jonathan Latimer

Jonathan Latimer (1906-1983) was a bestselling author and screenwriter. Born in Chicago, he began his career as a crime reporter for the Herald Examiner, working there until 1935, when he set out on a twisting road to Hollywood, which included stints as a dude rancher, a stunt man, and a publicist. In the late 1930s he began writing screenplays for MGM, producing the scripts for several classic noir films, including The Big Clock (1948) and the adaptation of Dashiell Hammett's The Glass Key (1942), which starred Alan Ladd.

All the while, Latimer was writing fast-paced mystery novels such as The Lady in the Morgue (1936) and The Dead Don't Care (1938). After fighting in World War II, he returned to Hollywood, where he continued writing novels and became a staff writer for the Perry Mason show.

“Latimer ranks as one of a triumvirate of the early masters of the hard-boiled school, along with Hammett and Chandler.” —Anthony Boucher

“A shrewdly concocted blend of exciting suspense.” —Chicago Tribune on Sinners and Shrouds

“[Latimer’s] characters might be people you know, and their talk is just as real and much more amusing, especially when they are a little drunk.” —The New York Times

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