Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Robert B Parker (1932-2010) R.I.P

Quercus his publishers in the United Kingdom and Putnam who were his US publishers. Putnam are due to publish a statement.

Parker’s first novel The Godwulf Manuscript was published in 1973 and introduced readers to his most enduring hero the wisecracking, street-smart Boston private detective Spenser. Parker wrote over 35 novels featuring Spenser and his sidekick Hawk. A number of the Spenser books were made into television films amongst them The Judas Goat and A Savage Place. In 1976 the novel Promised Land won the Best Novel Edgar Allan Poe Award from the Mystery Writers of America. This novel also introduced his sidekick Hawk. Spenser’s long-term girlfriend Susan Silverman first came to readers attention in the novel God Save the Child. In 1989 Parker completed Raymond Chandler’s last uncompleted Philip Marlowe novel Poodle Springs. It was subsequently turned into a film. He went on to write a sequel to Chandler’s The Big Sleep under the title Perchance to Dream in 1994.

In 1997 with the novel Night Passage he started a new series featuring Jesse Stone a former Los Angeles police detective who had a drink problem. A number of books in this series have been turned into successful television films featuring Tom Selleck in the title role. These include the first book in the series Night Passage, Death in Paradise and Stone Cold. The third series that he created featured Sunny Randall a female private eye. The first book in the series was Blue Screen. In 2007 the fictional world of his two characters Sunny Randall and Jesse Stone came together in the novel High Profile. Parker also started a western series known as the Appalossa series in 2005 with the aptly named title Appalossa. This was subsequently turned into a film featuring Ed Harris, Viggo Mortensen and Jeremy Irons. Parker also wrote two books with his wife Joan H Parker. These were Three Weeks in Spring in 1982 and A Year at the Races in 1990.

In 2002 Parker was named Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America and in 2007 he was awarded the Gumshoe Lifetime Achievement Award.

Quercus his publishers in the UK are due to publish a number of his novels in 2010 including the new Jesse Stone novel Split Image in March (February in the US) and Painted Ladies the new Spenser novel in November (September in the US). In the US a new Appaloosa novel Blue-eyed Devil will be released in May. Parker also wrote a number of other novels including Edenville Owls in 2007 a young adult novel.

More information about his death and tributes can be found here:
New York Times, Mystery Ink, IFPress.com, and

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