Thursday, September 30, 2010

Review: Richard Stark, The Hunter (1962)

The defining moment of the first Parker novel comes in a throwaway scene: Parker, searching for a location from which to surveil his prey, forces his way into a beauty shop, knocking out its proprietress with a punch to the chin. Parker gags her and ties her wrists and ankles together, cutting the cord with pair of scissors that he finds in a desk drawer. At first, he doesn't think anything of the inhaler that he finds along with the scissors, but then he notices that the woman is dead. Parker's reaction? There's no good reason why a gag should kill someone, so he's angry at the abstract stupidity of the woman's death. For just a moment. Then he goes about his business. Grade: B+

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