Parker is Back!
I just bumped into Richard Stark's latest Parker novel on Amazon--it is amazing what aimless surfing / time-killing will do for you. The title is, Ask the Parrot, and it is, according to Amazon, set for release on November 23, 2006.
If you are unfamiliar with Parker, or Stark, you should remedy that as quickly as possible. Parker is the quintessential tough guy anti-hero. He is a professional criminal who works only when he needs to, and isn't afraid of anyone, or anything. He is loyal, most of the time, reasonable and more than willing to kick your ass if you cross him.
You very probably saw him portrayed by Mel Gibson in the film Payback--and while I enjoyed the film, the novels are so much better!
Richard Stark is the pseudonym for Donald E. Westlake, and I have yet to read a Westlake, or Stark novel that I didn't enjoy. Hard Case Crime released a vintage-style mass-market paperback of Westlake's classic hardboiled novel, 361 last summer and they are set to release Lemons Never Lie in July. Lemons is another classic novel, this one under the Richard Stark moniker, which means it will be tough, hard and lean. It is high on my list of summer reading. The cover is great, too.