Duane Swierczynski on Westlake

Duane Swierczynski is the author of, among other books, The Wheelman, which he was kind enough to send me a couple of years back.  I don’t know how I missed his Westlake tribute from a few days ago, but I’ve found it now and here it is.

But it was Stark’s novels about Parker, a tough amoral heister with no first name, that really grabbed me. So much so that when I decided to write a straight crime novel, I wrote one about a mute getaway driver named Lennon. Needless to say, The Wheelman owes a serious debt to Richard Stark. So do a lot of other tough guy novels in the Stark mode, including Max Allan Collins’ Nolan series, Garry Disher’s Wyatt, and more recently Dan Simmons’ Joe Kurtz and Tom Piccirilli’s Chase. None of these would have happened without Stark blazing the trail, inventing a subgenre with a form as strict (and beautiful) as a sonnet.

I certainly didn’t know that he had named his child after Parker.  Are you sure that’s such a hot idea, Duane?  Don’t worry, I won’t tell my friends who work for CPS.

I know from my e-mail that many of you have already read The Wheelman, but if you haven’t, pick it up.  Highly recommended.

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