RARA-AVIS: Dirty Money by Richard Stark

From: davezeltserman (davezelt@rcn.com)
Date: 22 Jul 2008

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    This latest Parker book is a nice entry in the series, with a a great last line. Kind of interesting reading this right after the Hardcase Crime reprint of Westlake's "Somebody Owes Me Money". You couldn't have more different protagonists between Parker's efficient and deadly career criminal and Chester Conway, the schlemiely cab driver hero of Somebody Owes Me Money who's only trying to keep mobsters from killing him while at the same time trying to figure out how to collect the
    $930 owed him. It would also be hard to have more different styles of hardboiled crime--from the breezy, somewhat comedic style of Somebody to the terse, little honor among thieves style of Dirty Money. The one thing both books have in common is the characters act intelligently and there's a logic driving the story, as well as constantly increasing complications that the protagonists face. Westlake is truly one of the greats in crime fiction.

    --Dave Z.

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