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HomeNewsArchivesLATEST 'SPENSER' LIVES UP TO HIGH EXPECTATIONS

LATEST 'SPENSER' LIVES UP TO HIGH EXPECTATIONS

Back Story
Robert B. Parker
291 pp, G.P. Putnam's Sons, $24.95

When the word went out that a new "Spenser" novel was in the bookstore, I sighed (budget be damned) and headed down to get it. Yes, I am a Spenser freak, but I heartily recommend it. It's like a small, elite club with no clichés or tired, old stereotypes. There are a few touches of the old and familiar, but just enough to make you feel a part of it all.
And what an "all" it is! Robert B. Parker lifts the whodunnit genre right out of the mold and makes it fresh and invigorating.
Being a fan of Spenser might give me the right to rave about "Back Story," the latest in the series, but that's not true. Admiring Spenser does not make one a groupie. His persona speaks for itself, as does his friend, Hawk, and Susan, the love of his life. The difference between Spenser and all of the other private eyes of popular fiction lies in the genius of Parker to provide the reader dialogue that crackles, or humor so hidden one feels clever at the discovery.
Parker sets the scene so succinctly — what everyone is wearing, what the surroundings are (I would feel right at home in the Ritz-Carlton bar in Boston, watching the swans on the lake) and what Pearl, the short-haired pointer member of the family, is thinking, and doing.
The story tells of one of those heists of the 1970s when the antiwar demonstrators were holding up banks, not intending to kill anyone, but don't place your bets because accidents happen. When Spenser begins probing because his son asks him to do so, the saucepot thickens and the FBI enters, because they did nothing at the time.
Parker has many talents, but his storytelling tops the list. His tough guys have depth and character; you like them or you don't, but they are there for the coping. Hawk, Spenser's best friend and right arm, is a winner; underline that in red. If you haven't tried the Spenser special, now's a good time. I envy you.

"Back Story" is available at Dockside Bookshop in Havensight Mall. To check out other Dockside favorites, click here.
Publisher's note : Like the St. Croix Source now? Find out how you can love us twice as much — and show your support for the islands' free and independent news voice … click here.

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Back Story
Robert B. Parker
291 pp, G.P. Putnam's Sons, $24.95

When the word went out that a new "Spenser" novel was in the bookstore, I sighed (budget be damned) and headed down to get it. Yes, I am a Spenser freak, but I heartily recommend it. It's like a small, elite club with no clichés or tired, old stereotypes. There are a few touches of the old and familiar, but just enough to make you feel a part of it all.
And what an "all" it is! Robert B. Parker lifts the whodunnit genre right out of the mold and makes it fresh and invigorating.
Being a fan of Spenser might give me the right to rave about "Back Story," the latest in the series, but that's not true. Admiring Spenser does not make one a groupie. His persona speaks for itself, as does his friend, Hawk, and Susan, the love of his life. The difference between Spenser and all of the other private eyes of popular fiction lies in the genius of Parker to provide the reader dialogue that crackles, or humor so hidden one feels clever at the discovery.
Parker sets the scene so succinctly -- what everyone is wearing, what the surroundings are (I would feel right at home in the Ritz-Carlton bar in Boston, watching the swans on the lake) and what Pearl, the short-haired pointer member of the family, is thinking, and doing.
The story tells of one of those heists of the 1970s when the antiwar demonstrators were holding up banks, not intending to kill anyone, but don't place your bets because accidents happen. When Spenser begins probing because his son asks him to do so, the saucepot thickens and the FBI enters, because they did nothing at the time.
Parker has many talents, but his storytelling tops the list. His tough guys have depth and character; you like them or you don't, but they are there for the coping. Hawk, Spenser's best friend and right arm, is a winner; underline that in red. If you haven't tried the Spenser special, now's a good time. I envy you.

"Back Story" is available at Dockside Bookshop in Havensight Mall. To check out other Dockside favorites, click here.
Publisher's note : Like the St. Croix Source now? Find out how you can love us twice as much -- and show your support for the islands' free and independent news voice ... click here.