RICHARD STARK – Plunder Squad. Parker #16, Random House, hardcover, 1972. Avon, paperback, 1985. University of Chicago Press, softcover, 2010.

   But surely you’ve met Parker. He’s amoral, totally selfish, a hard professional criminal to his fingertips. No sense of humor, he reacts like a computer to any situation he’s in. He’s Lee Marvin in print; he’s beautiful (as his would-be assassin remarked in the memorable film Point Blank) —  and I love every minute in his company.

   This particular book, the penultimate in the saga, concerns the hijacking of a consignment of valuable paintings by Parker and his associates. It also involves Parker finally catching up and dealing with someone unwise enough to double cross him in an earlier book. A very stupid man.  You just don’t try any tricks on Parker.

   One query. Why in Point Blank (the film) was the character  called Walker rather than Parker? (Walker was one of Parker’s aliases.)

– Reprinted from The Poisoned Pen, Volume 4, Number 4 (August 1981).