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The death of Robert Parker has been a shock to us all. I was a late comer to his work, only beginning to read him a half dozen or so years back. I’ve never even seen the Spenser: For Hire series with Robert Urich.

I’d been aware of his books for a number of years, but had never tried them. There was a time when I’d become unable to work and had applied for disability. It took me two and a half years for it to go through and no new funds were entering the household at the time. Living alone, spending what money I’d saved had to go for essentials.

Book money didn’t qualify so I started visiting the library after an absence of a number of years. Robert Parker was one I finally decided to try and being as anal as I was, I started with The Godwulf Manuscript, working my way through the Spenser series in order. Over the space of a summer, maybe into September, I went through all of them, the Jesse Stones, the Sunny Randalls, two Marlowes, Appaloosa, and several standalones. Everything available at that point.

I became a fan, following him ever since. I know he’d fallen out of favor with some, but I knew I’d get a fun book every time out. Some I liked better than others, but was never completely disappointed in any of them.

Parker came along, for me, at a tough time in my life. Reading all his books helped me get through those times. Spenser and Jesse and Sunny became like friends. I loved visiting with them every now and then.

There will only be a few more already completed. Then it will be over.

He will be missed.

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