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Robert B. Parker's Cheap Shot (Spenser Series #43)

Robert B. Parker's Cheap Shot (Spenser Series #43)

3.9 25
by Ace Atkins

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“True to his practice of exceeding his own standards with each new novel, Atkins gives Robert B. Parker's long-running series one of its best installments to date” (Bookreporter.com) with the Spencer novel, Cheap Shot...

Kinjo Heywood is one of the New England Patriots’ marquee players—a hard-nosed linebacker who’s


“True to his practice of exceeding his own standards with each new novel, Atkins gives Robert B. Parker's long-running series one of its best installments to date” (Bookreporter.com) with the Spencer novel, Cheap Shot...

Kinjo Heywood is one of the New England Patriots’ marquee players—a hard-nosed linebacker who’s earned his standing as one of the toughest guys in the league. He may be worth millions but his connection to a nightclub shooting two years before is still putting a dangerous spin on his life, and his career.

When Heywood’s nine-year-old son, Akira, is kidnapped, and a winding trail through Boston’s underworld begins, Spenser puts together his own all-star team of toughs. It will take both Hawk and Spenser’s protégé, Zebulon Sixkill, to watch Spenser’s back. Because Heywood’s next unpredictable move puts everyone in jeopardy as the clock winds down on Akira’s future.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In Atkins’s assured third Spenser novel (after 2013’s Robert B. Parker’s Wonderland), New England Patriots linebacker Kinjo Heywood, who suspects he’s being followed, hires PI Spenser to look into the perceived threats. Someone may be unhappy that Heywood, who was implicated in a shooting at a Manhattan nightclub, emerged from the investigation with only a weapons violation. The star’s reputation as a dirty player also could be behind the harassment, with opposing teams potentially seeking to rattle him just as the season gets underway. When Heywood’s seven-year-old son, Akira, is kidnapped, Spenser works frantically to bring Akira back safely, despite sometimes working at cross-purposes from the boy’s father. Because the “old Italian and Irish crews” that Spenser used to know are no more, he has to turn to new underworld sources for information. Atkins’s gift for mimicking the late Robert B. Parker could lead to a long run, to the delight of Spenser devotees. Agent: Helen Brann, Helen Brann Agency. (May)
Kirkus Reviews
Boston's premier private eye signs on to recover the kidnapped son of one of Boston's sports heroes. Defensive lineman Kinjo Heywood is known for his crushing attacks on opposing quarterbacks. Now that a shadowy someone is following him around his hometown, his agent, Steven Rosen, and Patriots security chief Jeff Barnes are forced to play a different kind of defense. Brought in to find out who's forcing Kinjo to keep looking over his shoulder, Spenser has barely gotten started when Kinjo's second wife, Cristal, reports that his beloved son, Akira, 9, has been grabbed from her car on the way to school. Days pass with no word from the kidnappers, leaving Spenser and his trainee, Zebulon Sixkill, plenty of time to reopen the case of Cape Verde gangbanger Antonio Lima, shot two years ago in a Manhattan nightclub shortly after a scuffle with Kinjo over a waitress—a case Kinjo's brother Ray paid Lima's family handsomely to make go away. When a caller to a popular sports-talk radio show finally phones in a ransom demand for Akira, the $100,000 amount seems suspiciously low, and Spenser soon finds out why. His success puts him in tight with Kinjo but leaves him on the outs with the athlete's handlers and the cops. Then Kinjo takes to the airwaves himself to make a quixotic announcement that seems calculated to push the story, whose tension Atkins (Robert B. Parker's Wonderland, 2013, etc.) has so far managed admirably, over a cliff. And it does, as the tale fizzles out in a shower of forced entries, meetings with conveniently connected mobsters, eleventh-hour twists and bang bang bang. Two-thirds of a perfectly controlled kidnap tale, with Spenser close to his top form, crashes, burns and goes down without a trace in the end.
From the Publisher
Praise for Robert B. Parker’s Cheap Shot

“Robert B. Parker’s Cheap Shot shows why [Ace Atkins] was a perfect choice to continue the Spenser novels.”—West Orlando News

“A stupendous addition to the series.” —MysteryPeople.com

“Atkins is bringing his own energy and strengths to Parker's series. Cheap Shot is Spenser, by the book.”—TampaBay.com

“Atkins’s gift…could lead to a long run, to the delight of Spenser devotees.” —Publishers Weekly

And for Ace Atkins

“After assuming the reins of the iconic Spenser canon, Ace Atkins didn't just breathe new life into the already healthy franchise; he has performed the seemingly impossible task of growing it.”—BookReporter.com

“Hits all the usual Spenser notes.”—Chicago Sun-Times

“By now there should be no doubt that Ace Atkins is worthy of handling Spenser.” —MysteryPeople.com

“Captures Parker's distinctive voice.”—Tampa Bay Times

Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Spenser Series , #43
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.50(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher
“Spenser is as tough and funny as ever, and Atkins has become a worthy successor.”
— Booklist
“Assured... Atkins’s gift for mimicking the late Robert B. Parker could lead to a long run, the the delight of Spenser devotees.”
Publishers Weekly

“A well-conceived adventure that balances Spenser and friends’ experience with Akira’s innocence while drawing on Atkins’ own Auburn football days.”
 —Crimespree Magazine

Cheap Shot is the best yet, with a whip-crack plot, plenty of intriguing and despicable characters, and the lovable, relentless Spenser at its center….Atkins also has a deft way with Parker's style… Atkins is bringing his own energy and strengths to Parker's series. Cheap Shot is Spenser, by the book.”
Tampa Bay Times

“Atkins finds his footing this time, settling into the character and concocting a fairly complex caper with urban development, organized crime, and sex all playing roles….Quite a good crime novel.”—Booklist
“Solid… Atkins’s ability to perfectly mimic the originals will please diehard fans hungry for familiar pleasures.”—Publishers Weekly

“An entertaining effort.” — Kirkus Reviews

“These books are real gems…the old Spenser magic is back.”—Aspen Daily News

“Handpicked by the Parker estate to be the keeper of the flame for the Spenser franchise, award-winning author Ace Atkins rises flawlessly to the occasion. In addition to the signature dialogue, all the familiars are fully resurrected: Susan, the sexy shrink; Pearl, the wonder dog; Hawk, the wonder sidekick; good cop Quirk, and, of course, Spenser himself, that consummate knight errant for the 21st century.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Even the most fanatical Parker fans would be hard pressed to identify any aspect of this Spenser novel that doesn’t read as if it were penned by Spenser’s late creator.…Atkins hits all the familiar marks – bantering scenes with Spenser’s girlfriend, fisticuffs, heavy-duty backup from the dangerous Hawk – as he offers familiar pleasures.”—Publishers Weekly
“A brisk read. Atkins gets the important things right, from Spenser’s dark sarcasm to the gritty attitude of Mattie Sullivan, a 14-year-old Southie girl trying to solve her mother’s murder.”—Boston Magazine

“Atkins succeeds. He doesn’t sound like somebody trying to emulate Parker…. Spenser, thankfully, sounds like Spenser. You also get the vivid sense of place, flexing of muscles and spare plot that were hallmarks of Parker’s 39 Spenser books….It’s a feat when a writer creates characters who live and breathe on the page and make readers care and keep coming back for more. To manage that with someone else’s characters, let alone with an icon like Spenser, is a minor miracle. Ace Atkins pulls it off.”—Chicago Sun-Times

Meet the Author

Robert B. Parker was the New York Times bestselling author of seventy books, including the legendary Spenser detective series, the novels featuring Chief Jesse Stone, and the acclaimed Virgil Cole / Everett Hitch westerns, as well as the Sunny Randall novels. Winner of the Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Award and long considered the undisputed dean of American crime fiction, he died in January 2010.

Ace Atkins is the Edgar-nominated author of fifteen books, including the forthcoming Quinn Colson novel The Forsaken. Selected by the Robert B. Parker estate to continue the Spenser novels, he has also written Robert B. Parker’s Wonderland and Robert B. Parker’s Lullaby, both of which were New York Times bestsellers. He lives in Oxford, Mississippi. 

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Robert B. Parker's Cheap Shot 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 25 reviews.
Sicilian More than 1 year ago
Ace hits it out of the park again. This book brought some of our old friends from RBP's day back together. Hawk, Z, Tony Marcus and Susan. They brought the backup to a story that tells of the anguish of having your child kidnapped. Lots of twists and turns that Spenser deals with in his award winning way. No one...and, I mean no one, stops Spencer from doing his job and what's right. I love that this series is continuing and consistently delivers. Do yourself a favor and read Ace Atkins other books. This man is a force to be reckoned with and you can always count on a good solid story.
Bobby89 More than 1 year ago
It is hard to match the work of Robert Parker but Ace Atkins is getting to be as close as you can. (I encourage you to read his Quinn Colson novels as well. After the first Spencer book I looked up Mr. Atkins and have really enjoyed that series as well). He has fine tuned his Spencer novels and they are getting better and better.
Don Germaise More than 1 year ago
Ace Atkins has mastered the Spenser series and Robert Parker's style. A great read. I couldn't tell the difference between Atkins and Parker...
tedfeit0 More than 1 year ago
Unlike his previous effort in continuing a series created by Robert B. Parker, this time around Ace Atkins uses the full complement of Parker-created characters in a plot reminiscent of the master, including a sports theme. Kinjo Heywood is a star linebacker for the New England Patriots in need of Spenser’s services. It seems he has been followed and threatened. A simple assignment turns into a much more deadly one when Kinjo’s young son is kidnapped, and it takes the efforts of the full all-star team of Hawk, Zebulon Sixkill, Susan Silverman, and of course Spenser himself, to solve the crime. This time, the plot, dialogue and characterizations are more true to form. Atkins was hand-selected by the Parker estate to undertake writing three Spenser novels. Now that he has fulfilled that obligation, the question remains whether he will continue writing the series or go his own way. After all, he is an established author with many books of his own under his belt. The novel is recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cris ur a idiot
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Although I'd always enjoyed Robert Parker's books, I'd never quite appreciated how well he could write  and move a story along, mostly through snappy dialogue.  This book shows none of that effectiveness or panache.  The story drags; the writing is mediocre.  We should let Spenser RIP. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
From some one that hates you
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ace Atkins is far and away the best of the bunch that have tried to keep up Parker's series. This latest is no exception. He "gets" Spenser and the world that Parker created, and he seems to be getting better and more comfortable in carrying things forward. If you like these latter Spenser books (and you should), definitely read Atkins "Ranger" series, too.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ace Atkins has mastered the Parker style. This book was very entertaining.
Sambenedict More than 1 year ago
Atkins does it again. I hope it is not sacrilegious to say that Ace's Spenser books have been better the last few of Parker's and this one is the best yet.
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bakpen More than 1 year ago
Hawk has been missing from the last few Spencer mysteries. He's back in "Cheap Shot" and things are better for it. I read this straight through in about 2 days. It was an easy, fun read.
Virginiaw More than 1 year ago
I loved this one.  Ace Atkins has these characters down.  This had every one of the people that makes up a great Spencer novel.  I can not wait till he writes another  one.  I received a copy of this book through goodreads for a fair and honest opinion.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well people cal me cute so yeah i guess i am
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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