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Widow's Walk

Parker, Robert

4,691 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0399148450 / ISBN 13: 9780399148453
Published by Putnam Pub Group, E Rutherford, New Jersey, U.S.A., 2002
Condition: Near Fine Hardcover
From Rio Bound Books (San Marcos, TX, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

First Printing. Book has soft bump to spine ends. Jacket shows light wear along edges but no tears and not price clipped. Signed by Parker on the second free end paper. Bookseller Inventory # 002788

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Widow's Walk

Publisher: Putnam Pub Group, E Rutherford, New Jersey, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 2002

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Near Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good +

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

When fifty-one-year-old Nathan Smith, a prominent local banker and millionaire, is murdered, Spenser is called in to investigate Nathan's young wife, Mary Smith, who has a weak alibi, likes to sleep around, and is despised by her peers, and as the evidence stacks up against Mary, Spenser soon discovers that Mary's mysterious past has put his own life in danger. 175,000 first printing.

Review:

It's good to see private eye Spenser back in Boston, after his ludicrous imitation of a frontier lawman in Robert B. Parker's Potshot. But he's getting nowhere investigating the gunshot murder of banker Nathan Smith in Widow's Walk. The cops figure Smith's ingenuous but unfaithful young wife, Mary, pulled the trigger. She denies it. Spenser, hired by former prosecutor Rita Fiore to help build Mary Smith the best defense her money can buy, isn't sure either way, and the more time he spends on this case (dense with business and sexual deceptions), the more perplexed he becomes.

Of course, our poetry-spouting hero finally catches a break by linking Smith's demise to a convoluted real-estate scam. The rest of the novel offers plenty of Parker's characteristically witty dialogue, the slayings of several informants that you know from the get-go are toast, and ample opportunities for Spenser and his robustly menacing sidekick, Hawk, to intimidate lesser thugs. Unfortunately, the author isn't as attentive to the needs of other series regulars, including Spenser inamorata Susan Silverman, whose restrained jealousy toward lawyer Fiore ("Rita is sexually rapacious and perfectly amoral about it. I'm merely acknowledging that") and self-flagellation over a gay client's suicide somehow add no new depth to her character.

Parker has a propulsive prose style and can still concoct engrossing stories; his 2001 standalone Western, Gunman's Rhapsody, is a fine example. Widow's Walk doesn't quite meet that standard. Though entertaining, it's an unsatisfying chapter in a series that's become too predictable. --J. Kingston Pierce

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