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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
At a signing he once gave at a Long Island bookstore, Robert B. Parker admitted to me that he and his beloved private eye creation, Spenser, both shared the same view about aging. "We ignore it," Parker said. Despite the fact that the Spenser novels are written in "real time" and the Boston P.I. served in the Korean War, he remains a timeless romantic, pursuer of truth, and old-school thug who's out to clean up the streets as best he can.
In his 30th excursion, Spenser is hired by attorney Rita Fiore to delve into the case of Mary Smith, the beautiful but vapid wife of millionaire banker Nathan Smith who is now a suspect in her husband's murder. Nathan was found shot to death in the bedroom while Mary claims to have been watching TV in another room. Although Spenser sets out to clear Mary's name, he finds her insipid personality -- what he calls "the power of dumb" -- to be a hurdle he has trouble clambering over. His investigation unravels high finance schemes, property sale hustles, and plenty of banking backstabbing, but he still can't be certain if Mary pulled the trigger or is actually as ignorant as she appears.
The mystery itself is almost secondary to the literary attributes of the story. Widow's Walk is written with Parker's patented lucid style and a narrative drive that will propel you into a tale of thoughtful substance. As with his previous novels in the series, Potshot and Hugger Mugger, he manages to use a humorous ambiance to underscore the high level of violence. Although there's an unusually high number of deaths found in Widow's Walk, it's Spenser's wit and contemplative nature that makes this so exceptionally entertaining. (Tom Piccirilli)