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 Post subject: Robert B Parker
PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2007 3:31 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 10, 2007 10:30 am
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I'm currently mildly addicted to Robert B Parker novels. Seeing as he's written over 50 books I'm not expecting to read his entire back catalogue so I was wondering if anyone had any recommendations as to which ones I should focus on.

So far I've been reading mainly the No Exit Press stuff. I'll probably work my way through all the current Sunny Randall and Jesse Stone stuff as there's not many of them so far. But the Spenser books -- one of my friends has suggested the '80s stuff, specifically A Catskill Eagle. Anyone got any other suggestions?

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2007 12:29 pm 
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Location: Northants
I started on "Early Autumn", I think, but I'd suggest going back to the beginning (the series started in '73) - the stories and dialogue are a lot tighter than the later books - and working your way up.

I've just had a look on-line and realised that I stopped buying with the '91 book - I didn't realise he was still publishing them!

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2007 8:47 am 
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Mark, funnily enough I stumbled across the first four Spenser novels in Oxfam yesterday afternoon. Up until now I'd mainly been reading the recent books so it'll be interesting to see how they compare. (I also picked up a secondhand copy of A Catskill Eagle which I've been told is possibly the best in the series.)

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2007 10:33 am 
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Catskill is pretty good, if memory serves me right. I honestly think, though, that you'll see quite a difference - there's much more plot and story in the earlier books, though Parker is a cracking writer and I think even when it's just Spenser and Susan talking (or, better, Spen-sah and Hawk), it's still well worth a read.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2007 8:27 am 
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I've been told that there's a drop in the quality of the Spenser books after a while but I've also been told that Parker has gained a new lease of life since starting the Jesse Stone and Sunny Randall series.

And yes, Parker's dialogue is great. I think that's what I've liked about the recent books, the plots may not be that great but the prose is pretty minimal, allowing the dialogue to take centre stage. I'm curious to see what the books are like when Parker devotes more energy to prose and plotting.

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