Tony Gleeson's Reviews > The Hunter

The Hunter by Richard Stark
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Jun 23, 10

Read in June, 2010

I'm finally getting around to the early books in Richard Stark's (aka Donald Westlake's) Parker series. Thank heaven for the relatively new University of Chicago reissues of books that, until now, have been criminally difficult to find! Obviously the original book is the best place to get going. We are introduced to the cold, amoral and inexorable Parker as he jumps right into action, avenging his double-cross and supposed murder at the hands of his partner-in-crime and his wife. The interest of these books is that they run like clockwork: Parker has a goal (usually revenge for a misdeed) and he carries it out-- single-mindedly, unemotionally, unstoppably. A trail of bodies is just part of the procedure. No obstacle or enemy is too big or powerful-- Parker takes on the entire Mob by this book's end (and continues to do so in subsequent books). There's little doubt about the outcome but the reader needs to know what's going to happen next. And as much as Parker is a nasty piece of work with little to endear him, the reader may not love the guy, but can't bring themselves to root against him.
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