Spenser for Hire Novelist Robert Parker has passed after suffering a heart attack while writing at his desk. I loved the Television series starring the Late Robert Ulrich and Actor Avery Brooks and I began to read the novels that inspired the series.
Spenser, spelled like the 16th Century Poet, Edmund Spenser, will be compared to other fictional Private Detectives Philip Marlowe and the rest but this would be actuate but unfair. The "Spenser" character pioneered the "Modern" PI.
The characters of Philip K. Dick and Raymond Chandler were gritty, hard living denizens of the late 19th and Early 20th Century. Those characters resemble the Anti-Hero archetype. These were not nice guys! These dudes often ,were only a hair away, from being the criminals they pursued.
Not Spenser, he was well read, well educated, and lived well. He had a nice home, a steady Girlfriend, ate well, and had a Afrikan American Best Friend/Nemesis named "Hawk.
"Hawk" is the perfect counterpoint to Spenser. They both live by a strict moral code. Both possess high ethical standards, little patience for red tape and no tolerance for fools! Spenser has a strict Catholic faith, whereas Hawk never openly professes any faith. I personally always thought Hawk was a Muslim.
Spenser: " I thought you didn't do Christmas"
Hawk: "I Don't! But some people I love Do!"
I Love that!
To me, Parker paved the way for Novelist James Patterson, who's Dr. Alex Cross character, is an Afrikan American Homicide Detective with a Doctorate in Psychology. He too is fierce Family Man with education and high tastes. In that, he changed the landscape of Mystery literature.
Thanks Robert Parker, rest well until the last day. I will take a little more time, now to read and re-read your novels.
BE Prayerful! BE Mindful! BE Careful!