Re: RARA-AVIS: Parker Plunder Squad Query

From: M Blumenthal (
Date: 01 Sep 2001

 Mark Sullivan:

> Repeating the SPOILER ALERT for those who have not read Plunder Squad
> (or Butcher's Moon, for that matter).
> Mark wrote:
> "I guess when you are writing a lot of books over time you might lose
> track of characters unless you are keeping a very careful record.."
> I'd be more likely to buy the "just lost track" theory if Mackey hadn't
> mentioned the Plunder Squad caper upon his entrance in the following
> book, Butcher's Moon. He tells Brenda that Parker was the guy with whom
> he did a painting caper the year before. He just doesn't happen to
> mention that he died at the end of that caper.
> And it seems pretty clear that Mackey did die. He takes four bullets
> through a car window. Then the shooter walks up to check his victim.
> He then tells his partner that Mackey is dead.
> Now Parker is left for dead more than once in the series, but there is
> always an explanation on how he survived. Not with Mackey, though.

Of the original series, I found and read Plunder Squad last. It was just before I read Comeback. Until now I didn't realize Mackey made an appearance in Butcher's Moon also. That certainly damages my theory. It also means Westlake couldn't say all his recent books have come before Plunder Squad. Like Mark I had carefully reread Plunder to make sure Ed hadn't merely been wounded. He was definitely dead.

The ony explanation I can offer is that Westlake has neglected to change his pseudonym after Plunder Squad from Richard Stark to the one he used for Anarchaos, Curt Clark. The new Mackey is a clone of good old Ed I wonder if Brenda can tell the difference.

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