The Hunter (Parker, #1) The Hunter discussion


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Which is the best Parker novel by Richard Stark

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message 1: by Pranay (new)

Pranay Hi All,
I really want to know which is the best Parker novel and why? I have not read any and I would be starting with the first one soon but post that I would like to pick up only one or two and hence would like to know which ones. Thanks a lot.


Justin Personally. . . I think breakout is the best 1. . . The great thing about the parker novels are u don't necessarily have 2 read them in order 2 enjoy and follow them. . . Each 1 stands on its own.


message 3: by Pranay (new)

Pranay thanks alberto, justin for your views.


message 4: by Brian (new) - added it

Brian Ask The Parrot,The Outfit,The Score and The Seventh are great,with the first being a great starting point.
The rare coin score`s ok.
Breakout,comeback,firebreak and flashfire are terrible (no offence Justin).
I just got Backflash and The sour lemon score during the last couple of days.
And `The Hunter` is in the post.
Of the titles actually bearing Don`s name,361,The Cutie,Lemons Never Lie and Somebody owes Me money are all teriffic.
Happy reading Pranay ;-0


Adam Chant read a few over the years but at the momment i'm reading them in order published. just started "the handle"
Hard to pick a fav as they seem to have fused into one big gritty hardboiled epic!


Still I read the 1st 16 novels (the original 1962-1974 series) this past year.

I have to exclude the 1st 3 introductory entries (THE HUNTER; THE MAN WITH THE GETAWAY FACE; THE OUTFIT) because you have to get in on the ground floor with the "Parker" series.

After the introductory entries my absolute favorites are:

1)THE SCORE
2)THE JUGGER
3)SLAYGROUND
4)BUTCHER'S MOON

But all of the first 16 "Parker" novels are must-reads and best read in sequence.


Feliks The Outfit
The Score

my picks, for sure.


message 8: by Uji (new) - rated it 5 stars

Uji In the extras for the Mel Gibson directors cut version of " The Hunter" there is a short interview with Westlake.


Anthony Smith I'm going to put in a vote for COMEBACK, and it's because that was my first exposure to Richard Stark. I had no idea what the buzz was about. I ordered it along with Westlake's THE AX, and I devoured the thing like a starving man going after a burrito. COMEBACK was the one that hooked me for the rest. It was a great place to latch on, like a reboot, almost. I've read all but about four of them now. Saving them for a rainy day, because after that, no more Parker.


Mohammed  Burhan Abdi Osman Butcher's Moon is the essential Parker in that mix,gathers all the parts that made the first 16 books so great. Its bigger book in scope,pages too. Slayground is closest to being the best in the Parker series after if.


message 11: by Glen (new) - rated it 5 stars

Glen I like all of them, but Breakout is probably my favorite.


Justin I'd say just read them in order if you can. I started at The Hunter, and have made my way to Slayground so far. They're all nice easy reads, and fairly short (2-3 hours for me).

If you can't do that, then the first three make a nice trilogy, and Slayground was the best I've read since those.


message 13: by Paul (new) - rated it 5 stars

Paul Pranay wrote: "Hi All,
I really want to know which is the best Parker novel and why? I have not read any and I would be starting with the first one soon but post that I would like to pick up only one or two and h..."


No doubt you have read 'The Hunter', by now,but I'm a 'Johnny-come-lately', so thought i would add my thoughts. I have read 24 of the 25 'Parker Series' novels, but i don't have a favorite. I enjoyed them all equally. In fact I've re-read 'The Hunter' in the last week. When i read this series, i didn't read them consecutively, but i enjoyed them so much i now have the full series as well as 1/2 dozen Donald Westlake novels, so i intend to read them from beginning to end. I thoroughly recommend the 'Parker Series' to anyone who loves 'noir' or 'Hard Case' crime thrillers.


message 14: by Pranay (new)

Pranay Paul wrote: "Pranay wrote: "Hi All,
I really want to know which is the best Parker novel and why? I have not read any and I would be starting with the first one soon but post that I would like to pick up only o..."


I have read the Hunter and the outfit and enjoyed them immensely. I will soon be getting the audio book of Slayground so looking forward to it.


Stephen I've read the first 3 but noticed that Butcher's Moon is the one that everyone raves about so I'm cheating a bit and have just started Slayground and am going to read that plus Butcher's Moon and the one in between, without bothering with all the others. Halfway through and Slayground is great so far.


message 16: by Still (last edited Mar 26, 2014 07:41AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Still I received a DVD of Godard's 1966 film MADE IN U.S.A. as a gift at Christmas (2013).

I have a shelf of To-Be-Watched movies and haven't gotten around to watching it yet, opting instead for a series of Kurosawa noir films. Almost watched it Friday but my wife really wanted to see DRUNKEN ANGEL instead, so as it was her turn to pick the movie ...

Anyway, I was checking out the IMDB credits on MADE IN U.S.A. only to discover that this film was based on the Richard (Donald Westlake) Stark "Parker" novel The Jugger.

According to an IMDB contributor: Though based on "The Jugger" by Richard Stark (Donald E. Westlake), the author received no compensation for this adaptation. Westlake, who passed away at the end of 2008, successfully kept the film from being shown in the US during his lifetime.

How 'bout them apples?


message 17: by Brian (new) - added it

Brian Interesting...


message 18: by Jeremy (new) - added it

Jeremy Uji wrote: "In the extras for the Mel Gibson directors cut version of " The Hunter" there is a short interview with Westlake."

I thoroughly enjoyed the Westlake interview. However; I thought the Director's cut version of the ending for Payback was a let down compared to the original ending. I felt Mel Gibson did well.


message 19: by Paul (new) - rated it 5 stars

Paul I would add that if one wanted to read a single 'Parker' novel, i would say, overall, that 'Slayground' would be the best choice & most representative of the Parker oeuvre. For me it has the most 'atmosphere', & was the most memorable, looking back over the whole series. My 2nd choice would be 'The Hunter', simply because it's the first in the series & introduces the reader to Parker & his world.
In his last 4 or 5 Parker novels, although i enjoyed them, time had caught up with the plots & mobile phones, computers & other contemporary technology was becoming evident. Understandable on the part of the author to move forward, i felt the noir aspect of Parker waned. Still very enjoyable.


message 20: by Brian (new) - added it

Brian Thanks for the tips, Paul. I agree that some of the later 'Parker's lack the zip of the others. I must check out those two you recommended ;*O


Michael Emond I have read them all and while Butcher's Moon is my winner, I would never recommend it as the FIRST novel to read since part of the fun (of that novel) is to see old characters come back.
So other than that:
Outfit
Hunter
Slayground
Plunder Squad
The Score

I also have a fondness for the Rare Coin Score because it introduced Claire into Parker's life.


message 22: by Brian (new) - added it

Brian Thanks Michael.
I loved The Outfit, The Score and The Rare Coin Score.
Hated the hunter because of its` male on female violence.
I must check out Butcher`s Moon, Slayground and Plunder Squad.


message 23: by Paul (new) - rated it 5 stars

Paul Brian wrote: "Thanks Michael.
I loved The Outfit, The Score and The Rare Coin Score.
Hated the hunter because of its` male on female violence.
I must check out Butcher`s Moon, Slayground and Plunder Squad."
s

I've heard others say that about 'The Hunter'. I didn't find that offensive. That's not to say i condone violence against women. I just think it's a bit like the casual racism you come across in many books from that era, including the 'Marlowe' books, to mention one. I just accept it as i would a character i don't like, in a story i am otherwise enjoying. I would go further & say i actually prefer to be jolted out of my comfort zone, including practices i may find abhorrent, as long as it's relevant to the plot.


message 24: by Kai (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kai Dear Parker novice,

please do yourself the favour and DON'T DON'T DON'T start the voyage into the Parker universe with "Butcher's moon."

The previous posters are right, it is a tremendously good Parker novel, BUT!

But "Butcher's moon" references heavily the events that took place in "Slayground".

It is not mandatory to know "Slayground" before reading "Butcher's moon", you will understand everything. But it is fair to say that you will be less affected emotionally if you don't know the background. (calling all Parker experts of this thread: remember the friendly cop in "Slayground"? Remember him in "Butcher's moon"? Enuff said)

I read all Parker novels except "Hunter", "Breakout", "Nobody runs forever" and "Dirty money". I started with "Ask the parrot" and it was a good starting point for me. But looking back, I suggest "The man with the getaway face" as a premiere. I haven't read "Hunter" so I can't comment on its qualities.

Of all the books, I consider only "The mourner" and "The jugger" as sub par. But with standards raised so high by the rest of the series, even they are very good novels.

One of my personal favourites is "Deadly edge" btw. Just for the scene when they were eating the Mexican food... :-)


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