The Baby in the Icebox by James M. Cain

The Baby in the Icebox by James M. Cain

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A collection of stories, both early and late, that show how James M. Cain made his name

There is a hungry tiger loose in the house, and that is not good news for anyone. A jealous husband let the animal out of his cage hoping he would eat his wife alive, but tigers aren’t used to taking orders. This jungle cat will get his meal, and he doesn’t care where it comes from.

“The Baby in the Icebox” begins with a murdered wildcat and ends with a dead human—and what comes in between is some of the most striking prose James M. Cain ever put to paper. It is one of the first stories this master of crime fiction ever wrote, and it shows all the hallmarks of the novels that would later make him famous—namely Double Indemnity and The Postman Always Rings Twice. The tales in this collection are short, but Cain never needed more than a few pages to thrill.


 “No one has ever stopped reading in the middle of one of Jim Cain’s books.” —The Saturday Review of Literature

“A poet of the tabloid murder.” —Edmund Wilson

“Nobody else has ever quite pulled it off the way Cain does, not Hemingway, and not even Raymond Chandler. Cain is a master of the change of pace.” —Tom Wolfe

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