You probably havent ever noticed them. But theyve noticed you. They notice everything. Thats their job. Sitting quietly in a nondescript car outside a bank making note of the tellers work habits, the positions of the security guards. Lagging a few car lengths behind the Brinks truck on its daily rounds. Surreptitiously jiggling the handle of an unmarked service door at the racetrack.
Theyre thieves. Heisters, to be precise. Theyre pros, and Parker is far and away the best of them. If youre planning a job, you want him in. Tough, smart, hardworking, and relentlessly focused on his trade, he is the heisters heister, the robbers robber, the heavys heavy. You dont want to cross him, and you dont want to get in his way, because hell stop at nothing to get what hes after.
Parker, the ruthless antihero of Richard Starks eponymous mystery novels, is one of the most unforgettable characters in hardboiled noir. Lauded by critics for his taut realism, unapologetic amorality, and razor-sharp prose-styleand adored by fans who turn each intoxicating page with increasing urgencyStark is a master of crime writing; his books as influential as any in the genre. The University of Chicago Press has embarked on a project to return the early volumes of this series to print for a new generation of readers to discoverand become addicted to.
In The Jugger, Parker travels to Nebraska to help out a geriatric safecracker who knows too many of his criminal secrets. By the time he arrives, the safecracker is dead and Parkers skeletons are on the verge of escaping from their closetunless Parker resorts to lethal measures.
Whatever Stark writes, I read. Hes a stylist, a pro, and I thoroughly enjoy his attitude.Elmore Leonard
Westlake knows precisely how to grab a reader, draw him or her into the story, and then slowly tighten his grip until escape is impossible.Washington Post Book World
Donald Westlakes Parker novels are among the small number of books I read over and over. Forget all that crap youve been telling yourself about War and Peace and Proustthese are the books youll want on that desert island.Lawrence Block