Trying-to-get-my-act-together filler post

As I try to get back into the groove of regular reading, writing, and posting following one of the most eventful six months or so of my life, I’m grateful for diversions like this, from reader Michael C, that give me both a chuckle and an easy post:

I thought that [...]

Review: Killing Time by Donald E. Westlake

NB: A version of this post also appears on Existential Ennui.

Thanks to a series of Westlake Scores, I’ve ended up reading—and reviewing—some of Donald E. Westlake’s earliest novels this year. I wrote about his debut novel—under his own name, that is; he’d had a number of pseudonymous sleaze works published [...]

Westlake Score: The Split (Gold Medal, 1968), Robert McGinnis cover art

NB: A version of this post also appears on Existential Ennui.

I’m back, with a Westlake Score, and further evidence, as if any were needed, of the madness which consumes me. Because despite already owning three different editions of the seventh Richard Stark Parker novel—both under its original title of The [...]

The Split finally comes to DVD

Image from Warner Archives release announcement e-mail

Image from Warner Archives release announcement e-mail

(Via Wallace Stroby.)

Does this mean I have to watch it again?

Here’s the announcement from the Warner Archive:

THE SPLIT (1968) Richard Stark’s The Seventh (part of his iconic series of ‘Parker’ novels) gets the Jim Brown treatment in this neo-noir tale of [...]

Review: The Mercenaries (1960, a.k.a. The Cutie / The Smashers) by Donald E. Westlake

Let’s return to Donald E. Westlake’s debut novel (“official” debut, that is; he had other pseudonymous sleaze works published before it), 1960′s The Mercenaries, a signed, inscribed British first edition of which I blogged about just over a week ago. I mentioned in that post that Violent World of Parker proprietor [...]

Review: Darwyn Cooke’s Parker–The Martini Edition

Darwyn Cook Parker Martini Edition

People are cynical about repackagings, and they should be. How many cuts of Blade Runner are there now? I think there’s a box set to collect them all. And I will fully acknowledge that when I first heard about this project, the song that popped into my head was “Paint a Vulgar Picture” [...]

Darwyn Cooke talks to MTV Geek, breaks some news

Parker Martini Edition

MTV Geek interviews Darwyn Cooke about Parker. Ordinarily, this is the sort of thing I’d just throw out over Twitter, but there’s some news here. The big news is that the “original Parker story” supposedly included in the upcoming deluxe Martini edition won’t in fact be an original. Instead, it’s a short adaptation [...]

Westlake Score: The Split by Richard Stark; UK movie tie-in edition (Coronet paperback, 1969)

This latest Westlake Score was inspired by my learned friend Olman, who almost secured a copy of the book in question during a recent holiday ramble around a number bookshops in the Canadian Maritimes (not as unusual as that sounds; I did a similar thing on my holiday this year). Olman spied this [...]

Guest slot: Richard Stark, Harry Bennett, Parker book covers, and The Seventh

Today’s guest piece is by Nick Jones, AKA Louis XIV, who blogs about books (and sometimes comics) at Existential Ennui. You may be (should be!) familiar with him, because I’ve frequently linked both his book reviews and the great covers he digs up as he obsessively collects Stark and Westlake titles. In fact, I’ve [...]

Guest slot: Walkerp reviews The Seventh

University of Chicago Press (2009)



I’m pleased to present the first of what will be an occasional but I hope long-running series of pieces by others. This detailed and thoughtful look at The Seventh is by regular commenter Walkerp, who blogs about books at Olman’s Fifty and about life at Briques du Neige under his nom de blog Olman Feelyus. It originally appeared at Olman’s Fifty.

Enjoy.

Holy crap, that heist went really sour!

We’re developing a little tradition here where my wife buys me some of the new University of Chicago Parker books each year on my birthday in January and I read them slowly throughout the year. I’d already read the entire series at least twice before the U of C books were released, but this is a dedicated, focused reading in the wake of Westlake’s death and with the full consciousness that the Parker series is a literary classic. It’s been great. I don’t know if I’ve changed but the re-reading of each novel this time around has come as a real surprise to me. Things I’d forgotten are exciting to rediscover and things I had never noticed before are popping up now. I’m getting both the pleasure of rereading a great book and the pleasure of discovering something new.

[NOTE: SPOILERS START HERE. I AM GOING TO WRITE A PRETTY THOROUGH ANALYSIS OF THE SEVENTH WITH THE ASSUMPTION THAT YOU HAVE READ IT ALREADY. IF YOU HAVEN'T READ IT, GO GET ON IT AND COME BACK. THERE IS NO OTHER OPTION.]

Continue reading Guest slot: Walkerp reviews The Seventh