Book: Robert B Parker - Painted Ladies

By admin
18 March 2011

Sadly Robert B Parker, the creator of tough, irreverent Boston private detective Spenser, died last year. Happily his hero lives on.

Painted Ladies is the first of two novels to be released posthumously. The second is in the pipeline.

In the tradition of Raymond Chandler’s Philip Marlowe who enjoys chess and poetry, Spenser is more sensitive than the average hardboiled detective, exhibiting many of Parker’s own traits. He’s both a boxer and a good cook and loves dogs, doughnuts and coffee.

But it’s his lack of pomposity, laconic style and throwaway literary allusions that appeal as well as his self-confidence and belief in justice.

All these traits are put to the test in this novel about a killing that makes Spenser look foolish.

His exchange with a female suspect as he closes in on the murderer is typical: “You’re as implacable as he is. Be interesting to see who wins.”

“Yeah,” I said. “I’m interested in that too.”

Painted Ladies by Robert B Parker

Quercus, R220

Rating: 4/5

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