Parker, the ruthless antihero of Richard Stark's eponymous mystery novels, is one of the most unforgettable characters in hardboiled noir. Lauded by critics for his taut realism, unapologetic amorality, and razor-sharp prose-style, Stark is a master of crime writing, his books as influential as any in the genre. Parker goes under the knife in The Man with the Getaway Face, changing his face to escape the mob and a contract on his life. Along the way he scores his biggest heist yet: an armored car in New Jersey, stuffed with cash.
©1963 Richard Stark (P)2010 AudioGo
I like watching what Parker does. I enjoy it because it’s part of an interesting series. It would not be as good as a stand alone story. When I finish one book, I’m eager to read the next. Parker is a tough very smart bad guy planning and committing crimes with other bad guys.
There are no sex scenes, but there are references to Parker being with whores and slapping them to get them interested.
NARRATOR - John Chancer:
I did not like the narrator’s voice for some characters. He used an annoying southern hillbilly voice which did not fit Nebraska people.
This is book 2 in the 24 book series. It’s about 2/3 or less than a typical novel length.
Genre: noir crime fiction
After starting this book, I stopped to check on the original publication date because it seemed so "dated". Some things, like the jargon, were almost 30's or 40's, except not really. It turns out it was published in the 1960's, but some of the terms would have been laughable even then.
The story POV is a bit odd, it took a while to adjust to it. He is a "bad guy." A villain. I suppose he is supposed to be more acceptable because he doesn't kill people unless it's necessary. But he decides who dies based on his own criteria and that seems to be whether or not he'll get caught for it. He is a cold calculating killer any time he thinks it's convenient. Oh, he is no James Bond, I wouldn't say he has style, I would put him more in the category of "The Bad Seed." There is no conscience, apparently never had one.
The scariest thing is probably that his decisions are odd. The author has written him as a machine, not much of a character really. In fact, in some ways he's an idiot. OK, let's say a moron with calculating abilities base on experience participating in crimes.
"Face" is a story in a similar vein as its predecessor. Parker is working a job and dealing with trouble from all angles. He gets through using his wits and toughness. If you liked "Hunter", you'll like this too, but "hunter" was more action-packed with a keener plot trajectory.
Parker gets plastic surgery to evade the outfit, which he tangles with in book one.
Like real life things don't go as planned and Parker has to deal with several unexpected twists
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