Robert B. Parker: A man of virtue and wit – The Boston Globe

Meet Robert B. Parker, one of my favourite authors of detective stories. He followed in the footsteps of Raymond Chandler, Dashiell Hammett and Ross MacDonald. All of which I discovered for myself when I was still in my last years at school.  (I owe them a lot for what they did for my English!)

As I add this remark after just having finished my post on the death of J.D. Salinger the thought comes to me that there is a resemblance between Salinger’s young protagonist Holden Caulfield and the detectives invented by Chandler and Ross MacDonald and maybe many other detectives who live in a world often ruled by people who do not share the detective’s values, and in which it is hard to hold on to one’s convictions and beliefs.

This week it’s a little dimmer in Boston. A brilliant light is out. A literary light. Robert B. Parker, extraordinarily successful author of dozens of books about Boston sleuth Spenser, as well as other novels and young adult stories, died on Monday at his writing desk. There isn’t a bookstore or airport in the free world that doesn’t have his titles on their shelves. And although he didn’t put Boston on the map, he helped keep it there, making this great city accessible to the reading public – its glory and feisty independence, its rich and varied culture, its history and beloved teams. Collectively, his Spenser books are a symphony to this city by the sea.

The complete text can be reached at the Boston Globe’s site from here.

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