Re: RARA-AVIS: books to read - Westlake and Crais

From: Mark Blumenthal (
Date: 07 Jan 2000

> Other HB Westlake novels include his first, THE MERCENARIES (also
> reprinted as THE SMASHERS, possibly in an attempt to have it
> confused with a Matt Helm adventure), KILLY and 361. KAHAWA and
> HIGH ADVENTURE have their tough moments as well, and THE AX,
> while not exactly HB, has a meanness to it that will probably
> appeal to members of this list.
> BobT

The Mercenaries was first, at least under his own name. It reminds me of Paul Cain's The Fast One. Killy and 361 are often paired in the same volume. I consider Kahawa and High Adventure more straight adventure. High Adventure, whose title is a pun that can have three meanings, is is more like his light caper books His other Richard Stark books are the Grofield books--The Damsel, The Dame, The Black Bird and Lemons Never Lie. Grofield appears in some Parker books. The series is lighter but still hard boiled. The Black Bird and Slayground have the same opening chapter. Mark


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