Thursday, November 14, 2019

Review of "Robert B. Parker’s Lullaby: A Spenser Novel," by Ace Atkins

Review of

Robert B. Parker’s Lullaby: A Spenser Novel, by Ace Atkins ISBN 9780399158032

Five out of five stars

 This Spenser story by Atkins captures the essence of the main characters, including Hawk. For my taste, I was pleased that the sidekick roles was once again filled by Hawk rather than the lesser Z. Joe and Gerry Broz appear, although they are much older and well past their prime. Old adversaries and allies such as Vinnie Morris, Tony Marcus, Quirk, Epstein, Rita Fiore and Belson appear and fill their standard supporting roles. Susan is also prominent in supporting in her own sometimes detrimental way.

 A fourteen-year-old girl named Mattie Sullivan walks into Spenser’s office and wants him to investigate the murder of her mother four years earlier. She does not believe that the man convicted of the crime is guilty, but she cannot pay. Her mother was a drug-taking prostitute and the investigating officers did very little investigating. Wearing his heart of gold on his sleeve, Spenser takes the case, even though he has no expectation of making a case. Mattie lives with her drunken grandmother and is essentially raising her younger twin sisters.

 After a bit of prodding and poking as only Spenser can do, he quickly realizes that he is rapidly getting into conflict with some major criminal players. With Hawk’s help, they protect Mattie and track their way through a very dangerous trail. Spenser is also forced to battle a man named Connor, a federal agent that seems more intent in protecting his turf and being a liability than actually solving a cold case.

  The dialog is so good that it could have been written by Parker himself. This is the first Spenser book by Atkins that I could not put down.

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