My Life as a Dog

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Spare Change - Robert B. Parker

Robert B. Parker is one of my favorite authors but I've mostly stuck to reading his Spencer series. In fact I've read all but the newest of the Spenser books. But I do have it on my hold list at the library. While I was waiting for that one I needed something else to take on my San Francisco trip. I thought why try a book from one of his other series. Thus I checked out Spare Change: A Sunny Randall Novel.

I gotta admit that I was a little skeptical as to how much I would like it. But Parker quickly won me over. How did he do that, you ask. (Well pretend you did ask.) Right away, he let's us know that the setting is the same for the Spenser series. Sunny Randall is a private investigator in Boston. Spenser is also a private investigator in Boston. Then we find out that Sunny is seeing a shrink. It's not just any shrink, it's Susan Silverman, Spenser's love interest. Through the course of the novel Sunny interacts with characters (Belson, Quirk, etc.) that we are already familiar with from Spenser books. And of course, Parker's dialogs between the various characters are filled with the quick wit that I love.

Another thing that makes me lover Parker's writing is that he personifies the dogs. Each dog is a regular character with thoughts, emotions, etc. In the Spenser series there is Pearl, Spenser and Susan's dog, who provides many of the humorous moments. Knowing that, Sunny would have to have to have a dog also, right? Parker does not disappoint. While Rosie, Sunny's dog, didn't have as many funny moments, Rosie did become one of the main characters and added her own humorous interactions with the other characters.

So if you are a fan of the Spenser series and love Parker's writing there, don't be afraid to check out the other series. (I've started a Jesse Stone novell by Parker. So I'll let you know how it works out.)