Enter Spenser, who has been hired by the comely Mary Lou Buckman to investigate the murder of her husband. The Buckmans, a pair of L.A. transplants, moved to Potshot and started a modest outdoor tour service. It is Mary Lou's belief that when her husband refused to pay The Preacher and his men protection money he was killed. Without any witnesses, Spenser has little to go on, and it's clear the local police chief won't be doing much to help. Calling on his own cadre of tried-and-true cohorts, Spenser must find a way to beat the gang at their own dangerous game.
©2001 Robert B. Parker; (P)2001 Random House, Inc. Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, a Division of Random House, Inc.
"Spenser's moral compass is unerring, and it has nothing to do with political correctness. Parker breaks the mold of popular fiction." - (The Boston Globe)
"Mantegna ably captures the spirit and emotion of the people..." (AudioFile)
The title of this book makes almost too good of a target. OK -- To make it short and sweet -- it's got a good beat, but it's hard to dance to (my apologies to those of you too young to have watched American Bandstand). Parker's Spenser series of books have always been written sparingly, and this is no exception (As an example, Potshot has more than 50 chapters -- Parker outdoes Papa H in hes conciseness). One of the reasons that many of the previous Spenser books have worked is that Parker has kept the plot somewhat simple and, more importantly, does not include the cast of 'Ben Hur.' In this departure, there are 7,8,9, ??? characters with speaking parts in this book. Had Potshot been longer, Parker might have gotten around to fleshing the thing out. However, he stayed the course, and the result is a bunch of characters with only a patina of character development.
However, after the nit picking above, I still enjoyed the book. Spenser, Susan, and Hawk are at their best and if you have been a long time reader, you can easily forgive Parker's attempt to 'stretch' as illustrated in Potshot.
Lastly: This is an unabridged book and the reader is good enough to not get in the way.
If you've read any Spenser novels before, you probably don't really care about the reviews... you're going to read (or listen to) it anyways.
That being said... you won't be disappointed by Joe Mantegna's reading of these books, although I found the accents that he gives the female characters hysterical. The "he said, she said" comment of the previous reviewer is valid, but I didn't find it overly distracting.
The story line and characters were quite good. And I had a hard time putting the book (mp3 player) down.
But like one of the other readers of another Robert B. Parker book said. The narrator repeating "I said", "He said", "She said" following every line of dialog, drove me crazy.
The narrator did a great job changing voices for each character, so I dont know why he has to end each line of dialog with "I said".
A good Spenser story, as usual. A little Susan romance. A cast of characters. A couple of fights. You might think you probably know the answer to the mysteries. Good mysteries do this.
Potshot is one of my favorite audiobooks, but, then, I am an avid Robert Parker fan. I like Jesse Stone and Sonny Randall, but Spenser and Hawk are the best! This plot is absorbing, convoluted, as usual, and entertaining, because of the plethora of characters involved. Who can NOT enjoy the bi-play between Hawk and Spenser, but this book adds the rest of the rascals....including Bernard Fortunato, Horse, Cholo, etc.....Very funny.
The plot is intricate, and, as usual, Parker begins the book with one presumption, but, through all the plot twists and turns, the issue of murder becomes another problem. At the end, multiple issues are solved, the characters have developed sufficiently to end with the necessary plot resolution.
Any scene in which Spenser, Hawk and the cohorts interact is both revealing and hilarious.
To not listen to this all the way through makes it a scattered plot. The reader needs to keep track of all the plot threads.
Husband and Wife listeners -- he listens while driving or working outside -- she listens while knitting and crocheting.
Yes,This is a truly fun romp. This is RBP wrapping a western movie inside of a detective novel. Spenser goes out west to investigate a murder and ends up needing to clean up a town, Our favorite tough guy PI gathers his tough guy friends for assistance. The Parker characters kibitz as you would expect, This is a fun almost silly wish fulfillment Yarn.
Spenser. He is the reason the story happens.
Spencer is the guy we all want to be. Big, bad & not afraid of anyone. Mixed with violence, humor & a lot of sexual innuendos it makes for a great listen.
Not a particularly good story, poorly written but well read. If the author deleted the word ?SAID? the book would be about 1/3 shorter and much improved. Listening to phrases such as, ?he said??Jack said? ?Jane said??? Tom Said?.and everybody else said. It just never stopped?.
Don?t waste your time or money.
"Vintage Parker, beautifully read"
A particularly nice example of a Spenser novel, with an excellent reading by Joe Mantegna. If you like this sort of thing you will be in heaven. If you haven't tried one yet, please do. It's a sort of modern Raymond Chandler.
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