From: Mbdlevin@aol.com
Date: 09 Oct 2001

mark B writes:

<< http://www.weeklywire.com/WW/12-29-97/austin_books_feature1.html
 I don't think you can argue with an author saying something was not in
 character for someone he has created. ... If he feels the reasons he
 gave for Parker going to help Joe Sheer couldn't hold up, even if he
 doesn't remember the details, he has to be correct.
 Mark >>

No. I'm not going to give this one to you. Here's a small speculation: Westlake began by writing the book with Parker going to actually help Joe. It didn't sit right for him, so he looped back in the explanation that Parker is covering for himself. It works okay for me and as a reader I don't know about the generation of the plotting. But Westlake will be a different reader because he knows the history of the composition--the old problems remain visible. It's sort of like you can see a body repair on a car more easily if you know that there had been a dent in the first place. Anyway, this is getting to be more metacritical than about hard-boiled, so I'll stop.

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