The hunter becomes prey, as a heist goes sour and Parker finds himself trapped in a shuttered amusement park, besieged by a bevy of local mobsters. There are no exits from Fun Island. Outnumbered and outgunned, Parker can’t afford a single miscalculation. He’s low on bullets - but, as anyone who’s crossed his path knows, that definitely doesn’t mean he’s defenseless.
©1971 Richard Stark; Foreword © 2010 by Charles Ardai (P)2000 AudioGO
with what Parker did to outsmart these guys. It’s scary and suspenseful.
A normal person would be helpless, but not Parker. I read a lot, and I think I’m hard to surprise, but this one did it. This book is a great example showing how Parker is a brilliant strategist with keen insight into others.
I usually don’t like “first person” stories. This is an example of how rich a story can be when you don’t use first person, because you get inside others’ heads. This was great because we were in the heads of Parker and various bad guys. The characters were richly developed and intriguing. I loved how Parker decided which guy to use or kill first.
This is book 14 and has a complete ending. But book 16 (Butcher’s Moon) continues the story with Parker visiting the same mobsters two years later.
This book starts after a robbery with the getaway car crashing. All the guys are unconscious except Parker. Sirens are on the way, so Parker leaves with the money. He climbs the gate of a nearby amusement park which is closed for the winter. Some local mob guys see him do this. They tell the cops that Parker drove away with the money. Then they enter the park with a crew intending to kill Parker and take the money. There is no way out but the front gate which they guard.
NARRATOR & FORWARD:
The narrator Joe Barrett was good, better than Stephen R. Thorne, but not as good as Keith Szarabjka.
I liked the Forward by Charles Ardai. It appears in both books 13 and 14.
This is book 14 in the 24 book series. These stories are about bad guys. They rob. They kill. They’re smart. Most don’t go to jail. Parker is the main bad guy, a brilliant strategist. He partners with different guys for different jobs in each book.
If you are new to the series, I suggest reading the first three and then choose among the rest. A few should be read in order since characters continue in a sequel fashion. Those are listed below (with my star ratings). The rest can be read as stand alones.
The first three books in order:
4 stars. The Hunter (Point Blank movie with Lee Marvin 1967) (Payback movie with Mel Gibson)
3 ½ stars. The Man with the Getaway Face (The Steel Hit)
4 stars. The Outfit.
Read these two in order:
5 stars. Slayground (Bk #14)
5 stars. Butcher’s Moon (Bk #16)
Read these four in order:
4 ½ stars. The Sour Lemon Score (Bk #12)
2 ½ stars. Firebreak (Bk #20)
(not read) Nobody Runs Forever (Bk #22)
2 ½ stars. Dirty Money (Bk #24)
Others that I gave 4 or more stars to:
The Jugger (Bk #6), The Seventh (Bk#7), The Handle (Bk #8), Deadly Edge (Bk#13), Flashfire (Bk#19)
GENRE: noir crime fiction
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