Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Robert B. Parker - One of the Greats

This week I had promised myself I would get caught up on my reviews. I'd write at least one each night after work and get back on track. But sometimes life happens; it gets in the way. This time death happened, and it's time to step back and pay tribute, reviews can wait until tomorrow.

I don't know that there is much I can say that hasn't been said - very well - already. Dave White was extremely eloquent in his tribute and fond words peppered Twitter, among them this and this. Robert B. Parker influenced the crime fiction genre in monumental ways. I grew up watching Spenser for Hire on television and didn't know until later in life that it was based on Parker's series. It was love at first word when I did finally discover them. I haven't made my way through the entire series yet, because I discovered it late. Now I will relish every book, every chapter, every sentence even more - if that is possible.

I also know that because of his influence on the genre, he will live on. Yes, his books will be his legacy, but echos of his style will live through other writers who have been drawn into the genre because of his work. I think he can be extremely proud of ALL that he has accomplished and left behind.

Robert B. Parker died sitting at his desk, working on his next novel. How perfect an end, too soon though it was. The crime fiction world mourns you today, Robert B. Parker. We salute you and thank you. May you rest in peace.


Kristie January 19, 2010 at 1:12 PM  

I just finished my first book by Mr. Parker and fell in love with it! I am saddened to hear of his death and will definitely have to check out more by him. Thanks for this great post!

le0pard13 January 19, 2010 at 1:30 PM  

The crime fiction world has lost a great one. May he rest in peace. Thanks, Jen.

Joe Barone January 19, 2010 at 1:35 PM  

I remember reading the Godwulf Manuscript when it first came out and thinking, "I've got to read more of this guy."

What a blessing it was for him to be able to write for so long and to write so well.

May he rest in peace.

Pop Culture Nerd January 19, 2010 at 1:36 PM  

I only started reading him recently and wondered what the hell took me so long. But at least I had a huge canon to catch up on. It saddens me he'll no longer be adding to it.

Eloquent tribute, Jen. And yes, that seems to be the perfect way for him to go, if there is such a thing.

Christine January 19, 2010 at 2:24 PM  

Robert B. Parker and Tony Hillerman are two of the greats with huge catalogues that are on my MUST read list. Gone but never forgotten.

Well said tribute, Jen.

Naomi Johnson January 19, 2010 at 2:54 PM  

I first read Parker when The Godwulf Manuscript was released. It was a long time before I got around to reading the next Spenser book though, and from then I was hooked. Very sad to lose another of the great ones, but I suspect Mr. P. lived and died just as he would have wanted.

Jen Forbus January 19, 2010 at 9:51 PM  

Thanks for sharing your sentiments everyone. Naomi, I completely agree with you. I don't think he would have preferred any other way. He shared with us so much and that will live on forever!

Corey Wilde January 19, 2010 at 10:41 PM  

He brought the PI story out of mothballs, gave it a new respectability, and it's still thriving. Readers and authors, there are a lot of people who owe this man.

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