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The Man With The Getaway Face (Parker, #2)
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The Man With The Getaway Face (Parker #2)

4.07 of 5 stars 4.07  ·  rating details  ·  2,187 ratings  ·  167 reviews
Master thief Parker comes to a plastic surgeon in Nebraska with a face that the Outfit--the New York syndicate--wants to decorate with a bullet. But nothing can keep Parker away from his old life of crime--and the major heist of an armored car somewhere in New Jersey.
Mass Market Paperback, 225 pages
Published 1963 by Pocket Books
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The Big Sleep by Raymond ChandlerThe Maltese Falcon by Dashiell HammettThe Long Goodbye by Raymond ChandlerFarewell, My Lovely by Raymond ChandlerThe Postman Always Rings Twice by James M. Cain
Best Noir
47th out of 463 books — 511 voters
The Hunter by Richard StarkThe Man With The Getaway Face by Richard StarkThe Score by Richard StarkThe Mourner by Richard StarkBreakout by Richard Stark
Richard Stark's Parker Novels
2nd out of 12 books — 2 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,975)
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4.0 stars. After settling a vendetta against his former crew and starting a big, juicy new one against the entire Outfit in the The Hunter....PARKER (aka Mr. Badass MoFo)....IS …..BACK!! He has a brand new face thanks to some nifty plastic surgery performed by an “off the books” doctor and is now in need of some quick cash to tide him over while he looks for his next big score.

In order to solve his fiscal crisis, Parker reluctantly agrees to team up with an old associate and his new woman in or...more
Parker novels are unapologetic pulpy goodness. The lingo alone makes the read worthwhile. I’m not sure how I’m going to work a line like Who’s the bird dog on this one? into casual conversation. Nor will I be 100% sure what I’m saying if I call someone a frill and/or a busher, but by god, by the end of the work week I intend to find out.

Parker has simple rules for life (he’d be pretty easy to program as far as artificial intelligence goes: if whore responsive, proceed; else, choke). He doesn’t...more
Dan Schwent
Parker leaves Nebraska with a new face and a distinct lack of funds. He gets involved in a scheme to rob an armored car but there are complications. The plastic surgeon who operated on Parker winds up dead and people think Parker pulled the trigger. The armored car scheme is dodgy at best and one of the partners is planning a double cross. Can Parker figure out who the trigger man was and clear his name,pull off the armored car robbery, and avoid the double cross?

Westlake does it again. Parker i...more
Killer Rabbit
Parker needs a more challenging adversary.
Reading this was like watching a Grand Prix jumper do a course set by a pony club. The horse knows the job is below him so he's cranky, but since he's a pro, he takes every obstacle with style...until that chihuahua runs out onto the course and starts nipping at his heels.

Personally, I preferred the storyline for the first book in this series. Let's see how you feel: If you want to see Parker battle against an ex, a double crosser, and the Outfit, then r...more
parker offers something very attractive to the reader: a proxy by which she can exact revenge on this world in a logical, sensible manner; one in which the brain totally overpowers the heart; one in which he can charge forward with the cool determination of an animal on the hunt. the clerk at the DMV won't renew your license? wait till she's alone, shiv her in the chest, drop the body in a dumpster, and get back in line. the drunken frat boy ain't moving outta the way and you really have to pee?...more
When Parker gets plastic surgery from a crooked doctor to change his appearance, he hopes that it will help hide him from the Outfit since they‘re still slightly peeved at him after the last book. With funds running low, Parker has to quickly sign on for a job robbing an armored car. However, the set-up involves a grouchy waitress named Alma, and she’s showing every sign of wanting to pull something cute and keep the money for herself. Plus, the doctor who did Parker’s surgery has been murdered...more
I don't have much for this one.

The story was a lot stronger than for the first Parker novel. In a lot of ways this might be the best of the Parker novels I've read so far, as a coherent story it surpasses The Outfit, which I gave an extra star for being more over the top and appealing to imaginary bad-ass that I would probably want to be if I had no morals or inhibitions or whatever you want to call it.

This story involves Parker getting a plastic surgery to hide from the Mob, robbing and armor...more
James Thane
This is the second book in Richard Stark's series about the amoral criminal, Parker. At the end of the first, The Hunter, Parker is on the run from the organized crime syndicate, the Outfit. At the opening of this book, he has made his way to Nebraska, where he successfully undergoes surgery to change his face to such an extent that even his old associates don't recognize him.

At the conclusion of the operation, Parker returns to the East, desperately in need of a score. An old acquaintance propo...more
My edition was a download from the library produced by Audio Go, read by John Chancer, an edition not listed on GR. It's about 300 minutes long & was worth every minute.

I kept waiting to get the first in this series, but it keeps being checked out, so I finally just listened to this one. I do know sort of what happened in the first one because of the 2 movies based on the first book. I hear the 2d, Payback with Mel Gibson, wasn't great, but I liked it.

Anyway, I had no problem fitting right i...more
Jul 11, 2014 Mark rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of crime noir
Recommended to Mark by: Ed
The 2nd installment of Parkers' adventures and it tells us of Parker getting some plastic surgery to alter his well known looks especially for that crime outfit he hurt so much in the 1st novel (FYI: the Hunter). Parker being low on finances decides to take up a heist in order to replenish his depleted financial reserves. The heist and the planning does not go off as ideally planned but Parker walks away with enough dough.
The second story line is about Stubbs the former chauffeur of the plastic...more
Jane Stewart
3 ½ stars. There were some good parts. I like watching what Parker does.

I enjoy it because it’s part of an interesting series. It would not be as good as a stand alone story. When I finish one book, I’m eager to read the next. Parker is a tough very smart bad guy planning and committing crimes with other bad guys.

There are no sex scenes, but there are references to Parker being with whores and slapping them to get them interested.

NARRATOR - John Chancer:
I did not like the narrator’s voice for so...more
"When the bandages came off, Parker looked in the mirror at a stranger."

The somewhat uneven second entry in the Parker series opens with a new, surgically altered face for our nonhero, in an attempt to escape his beef with the Outfit (Stark's version of the Mafia, but in reality the name of the actual Chicago syndicate). The book isn't uneven because of the quality of the writing or plot, the armored car robbery that forms the main plot is actually quite good and sets the template for the rest o...more
Oct 12, 2011 Mike rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
This is a very "straight-ahead" type of story. The protagonist, Parker is an accomplished criminal who gets a new face from a Doctor in Nebraska. Why he needs it gets revealed in bits and pieces throughout the book. The majority of the plot involves Parker running down a lead for a "job" in New Jersey. Ever the professional, he determines that the heist is doable, but not in the way and with the crew that the originator and his girlfriend have proposed.

He and the girlfriend don't and won't get a...more
Benoit Lelievre
The Parker series is a project of a deceitful ambition. Richard Stark lifts the veil on his protagonist gradually and never goes faster than Parker's own actions. In THE MAN WITH THE GETAWAY FACE, he is looking for a fresh start, but there isn't such thing as fresh start for an unrepenting career criminal like him.

But if somebody can pull it off, it's Parker. The mysterious thief is looking to support himself after starting a beef with the outfit and undergoing plastic surgery to change his appe...more
Book two in the Parker series. What can I say? Cold. Brutal. And yet...Parker has his professional scruples. Book two's Parker is less emotional than the vengeance driven verion in The Hunter. The buying of guns, the planning, etc., are all made fascinating through dialogue, character, and setting. As many have pointed out, this novel is actually two stories linked by Parker's attempt to get a new face (the mob is after him due to his scorched earth actions in the previous novel). Since this boo...more
“Jacksonville was twenty miles away, so that’s where he stopped for a whore. She was the same as the Richmond whore and the Columbia whore, disinterested till he hurt her a little. He didn’t get his kicks from hurting whores, it was just the only way he knew to get them interested.”
Show me another protagonist who acts like this. I don’t say that defiantly; I’d really like to know if there are some other choices besides the flawless main characters in most commercial fiction.
And most of the time...more
Una Tiers
This book had a great first half with an armored car robbery planned by a motley group of crooks. They all planned a double cross. The robbery goes off without a hitch but the book drops the pace and stumbles to the ending.
In the first Parker novel, The Hunter, Parker thumbs his violent nose at organized crime, thereby necessitating the getaway face. By the end of The Man with the Getaway Face, however, Parker knows that his new face will not be enough; sooner or later, he will have to deal with "The Outfit." Therefore, the second Parker novel seems rather like killing time until this showdown, but it's a pleasant way to kill some time. The Parker novels are the noir equivalent of cotton candy—and I mean that in t...more
Bryce Wilson
Another great Parker yarn. Though it's not the model of narrative efficiency The Hunter was, this is not entirely fair as...

A) The Hunter is THE model of narrative efficiency.
B) The story reads like (and I'll bet probably was) the results of Westlake writing two Parker stories and not being quite able to get them to novel length, causing Westlake to Brundlefly them.

Still a great read, one of the coldest of the novels and that's saying a hell of a lot.
Aaron Schmidt
The pace, tone, and tenor seem much more at home in “The Man With The Getaway Face" than in "The Hunter." Specifically, Parker's utilitarian brand of criminal feels more justified with each of his decisions and actions leading to the heist at the center of the plot (and, wihtout spoiling things, to the ancillary plot). We get to 'know' Parker a little better, but that knowledge comes only as a function of his next job, which, incidentally, is how other characters come to know him.

As such, the '...more
Oct 17, 2008 Michael rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: crime fiction fans
My friend Maggie recommended this series, known as the 'Parker series' after the hero, a guy so often referred to only as Parker that I can't remember his first name. This series reverses the usual detective fiction convention of siding with the hard boiled, barely getting by detective, generally working for hire, and instead perches us on the shoulder of a professional thief.
Parker is a man who is just trying to make a dishonest living. He is careful, methodical, unsentimental, doing what he k...more
Continuing with my reading (audio) of all the Parker series by Richard Stark (Donald Westlake), this title follows Parker's run-in with the "Outfit/Syndicate". He has paid to have his face altered by plastic surgery (references to the “party” date this book somewhat and I wonder if contemporary -- read young-- readers will get some of the allusions.)

Parker’s heists are not always successful; indeed, some go marvelously awry. They are always beset with problems. Here, his caper is threatened by...more
I really like the Parker books, they have a brutal amorality that you don't often read. And even though Parker himself is not a character you can warm to, I do find myself warming to him.

This is actually the second book, after 'The Hunter' (or 'Point Blank') and picks up where that book left off, with Parker having beaten the syndicate and getting a new face. From there it's the usual tale of a violent robbery, a double cross and Parker picking up the pieces as everything goes wrong.

Although enj...more
Finally, after a string of dull and dreary reading experiences this summer, I finally scored some good old-fashioned reading pleasure with this one. To be perfectly honest, there was some slag involved (think overly-detailed directions on routes unknown- sorry i need a map, or a nap) and yet... I want more Parker. Wry, sly, and occasionally dry, this slim novel gets it done.
Samantha Glasser
After plastic surgery gave him a new face to hide from the Outfit, Parker is off to a life of crime, this time tipped off to a plan to rob an armored car by an old friend. He doesn't like the set-up because he doesn't trust all of those involved, but he goes along because he needs money. Then someone finds him with the potential to reveal who he really is and threatens to ruin everything.

Another snappily-written Parker novel, this is short and sweet and entertaining from start to finish. He cer...more
Parker has a new face because of his problems with the mob and so is short of funds. He gets involved in an armored car job that has a lot of kinks anyway.

Things get complicated when the plastic surgeon's chauffeur comes looking for him. Someone has killed him and it has to be one of three recent patients. Parker plans to hold him until after the job is finished, then get it straight. See, it's been set up that if he doesn't return the cook will inform the right people of the three new faces.

Fantastic read. Parker is a terrible person, unfeeling, unyielding, barely one-dimensional, and yet he's fascinating. An anti-hero well worth rooting for.

The writing is great, crisp, vivid and tremendously driven. Great plot, great characters, feels authentic down to the last detail. He tells you exactly where the story's going, and you're still taken by surprise when you get there. And even some handy hints about how to get the best out of a prostitute (bound to come in useful).

A lesson in Ame...more
This is the original hard boiled tough guy. Stark (Westlake writing as Stark) boils the essence of a smart no-nonsense tough guy down from the work of the greats that wrote detective and crime fiction before him, and created Parker. Forget the movies you may have seen - be they timeless classics or modern dreck - and do yourself a favor and read these. If you like crime fiction you have to check these books out. The Chicago Press has re-released them in sharp stylish new paperbacks that are inex...more
H.c. Barlow
I became interested in reading this series after watching both versions of the movie Payback. My library didn't have the first book in the series, The Hunter, but I picked up this book and also the third one in the series. Overall I have to say that as a standalone this was not a very good book, it only really works as part of a larger series. The beginning and the end of this book are the really important parts, and the middle part during which Parker works on an armored car heist is mostly jus...more
An adequate continuation of the story of Parker, the anti-hero introduced in The Hunter. This installment of the Parker series doesn't have the same kind of pulpy panache that the first book did, and at times feels like it has too many moving parts for the type of book it is. (It's almost as if Westlake is writing instead of Stark, as incongruous as that seems.)

Remember, two stars means, "It's okay," not, "It's bad."

While there are many more than three books in the series, this really has the fe...more
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