Friday, July 22, 2011

Slayground: a Parker novel

So this was easily my favorite of the Parker novels I've read so far.  Now it may not be my favorite story - it's hard to say since I'd read the graphic novels for The Hunter and The Outfit first.  Needless to say I haven't read a bad Parker novel yet.  But this one starts with a bang and just keeps on going.  It's probably the most limited time frame of all the books I've read.  Parker is part of a heist gone wrong and he gets trapped inside an amusement park closed for winter.  The only way out is guarded by mobsters.  He's outnumbered and outgunned.  It's a hell of a ride and it's a great read.  Things just keep getting worse and worse to the point where you really have absolutely no idea how the hell he's going to get out of the pickle he's in.  I believe that this is the 14th book in the series, which is the point at which you'd think the character and world would start to get stale, instead Stark throws all he's got at the character and story.
He wrote a sort of sequel to this story - Butcher's Moon - and that's my next on the Parker pile to read.  At one point Stark took a break (twenty plus years) between Parker books, so I'm going to try and read all the pre-break books first.  Really solid stuff.  And there is apparently a film version of this one that I'd love to see at some point.  If you're interested in reading the series I probably wouldn't start with this one, but on the other hand if you really just want one hell of an exciting crime-thriller, this one reads as a great one-off.
Slayground: A Parker Novel (Parker Novels)

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