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Robert B. Parker has long been acknowledged as the dean of American crime fiction. His crime novels featuring wise-cracking private-eye Spenser have earned him a devoted following and critical acclaim, while his standalone novels continue to hit the American bestseller lists on publication. At the 2002 Edgar Awards, Parker was named Grand Master of Crime Fiction, an honour shared with Alfred Hitchcock and Ellery Queen.
What happened to good old-fashioned westerns? They went out of vogue – so when one came along I pounced on it, especially since it’s written by one of America’s best crime writers. It’s classic stuff but with an extra twist and beside the gun fights and hard men is a tale that says something about men and women in the old West. Comparison: Cormac McCarthy, Stef Penney (Tenderness of Wolves).
At 46, Aaron Newman was enjoying the good things in life - a good marriage, good health, a good job. Then he witnesses a murder and is plunged into a world of fear and violence. But Aaron refuses to be a victim. In a world where only the strongest survive, he determines to eliminate the psychopath who threatens those he loves.
A Hollywood movie is shooting in Paradise, Massachusetts. But for its leading starlet, Marisol Hinton, Paradise feels more like perdition. Terrorized by her meth-addicted ex, and increasingly frightened for her life, she has approached Police Chief Jesse Stone for help. Jesse already has his hands full - waging a war against a teenager whose reckless behaviour is endangering the local community, and juggling a series of complaints from Paradise citizens, aggrieved at being charged exorbitantly high fees by the town's water company. Never one to back down from a fight, Jesse throws himself into all three cases with his characteristic vigour. But what he doesn't realize is that those appearing the least dangerous will prove to be the most deadly.
When Boston mobster Julius Ventura asks Spenser and his sidekick, Hawk, to find his missing son-in-law, it's clear he's not telling the whole truth. But something about the case appeals to Spenser and he agrees to take it, only to find himself at the centre of a gangland turf war.
When the beautiful young wife of a Boston policeman goes missing, he asks his friend, private detective Spenser, to find her. But to do so Spenser must delve into the woman's past - which he soon discovers is darker than he could ever have imagined.
A local theatre director claims he is being followed. An actor is gunned down onstage. There's more behind the scenes than an overzealous critic - and private detective Spenser intends to find out exactly what that is...
It's December in Boston, and Spenser is busy planning the menu for Christmas dinner when he's confronted in his office by a young boy named Slide. Homeless and alone, Slide has found refuge with an organization named Street Business, which gives shelter and seeks job opportunities for the homeless and lost. Slide's mentor, Jackie Alvarez, is being threatened, and Street Business is in danger of losing its tenuous foothold in the community, turning Slide and many others like him back on the street. But it's not a simple case of intimidation Spenser, aided by Hawk, finds a trail that leads to a dangerous drug kingpin, whose hold on the at-risk community Street Business serves threatens not just the boys' safety and security, but their lives as well.Unfinished at the time of his death, Silent Night was completed by Parker's longtime agent, whose decades-long association with Parker's work gives her unique insight and perspective to his voice and storytelling style. Her contribution also speaks volumes about their enduring friendship.
Hired by an aristocrat who refuses to believe that his wife's brutal street-slaying was random violence, private detective Spenser suddenly finds himself in a world where nothing is what it seems, least of all the life - and death - of the victim