This is a Spenser novel. Back in Boston. Back with Hawk and with the lovely Susan. You either love Spenser, his compatriots and all his baggage, or you do not. I do. He is one of a kind - give Spenser a chance; you might grow to love him too (warts and all).
Spenser is a PI with many contacts, a psychiatrist girlfriend (Susan), and the tenacity to get the job done. I enjoyed the twists and turns of this book, but not Spenser and Susan. I found them both to be egotistical and uppity. Susan is a definite snob and not a likeable character at all. In addition, the author, Robert B. Parker, seems to have a prejudice against larger people, as throughout the book, definite derogatory comments were made that didnt need to be and didnt add to the book or description of the characters. Better descriptive words are available to describe a larger person. It was offensive. If you are going to be insulting to one set of people, be consistent and do it for all of them (tall, skinny, short, fat, rich, poor, white, black, whatever). On the plus side, Spenser has an unusual friend and contact that helped him out quite a bit on this caseHawk. He is a muscular black man who is extremely funny and I thoroughly enjoyed him. I found myself wishing the book used Hawk as the main hero. Oh well. I wont bother with another Robert B. Parker novel again as I was seriously offended by all of his fat comments, but if that doesnt bother you, then go for it.
"When Marlene Rowley hires Spenser to follow her cheating husband, Spenser finds not only a two-timing spouse, but another detective hired to shadow the wayward Marlene. Not the most trusting couple in town--but, as in Spenser's about to learn, certainly one of the most dangerous..." worldcat.org
I enjoyed this novel as Spencer and the detective for the other spouse share information on each of their assignments, without any conflict of interest.
He said, she said, I said... It was really getting monotonous listening to this audio but I enjoyed the story itself. Parker should be a little more imaginative but I guess he is well liked. All in all an enjoyable listen.
Spenser #31 finds the veteran Boston PI tackling corporate crime in a routine yet absorbing outing. As usual, Spenser enters the case at an angle, this time because he's hired by one Marlene Rowley to prove that her husband Trent, CFO of energy firm Kinergy, is cheating on her. Before long the PI learns that marital cheating is all the rage among Kinergy's players, with the hanky-panky orchestrated by radio personality Darrin O'Mara, who runs popular sex seminars on the side. Maybe all that cheating explains why Spenser keeps running into other PIs hired by Kinergy folk, but it doesn't point to why Trent is found shot dead at Kinergy headquarters. Spenser links Kinergy's slick founder/CEO to the sex ring and blackmails him to gain access to Kinergy's records, unveiling a pattern of accounting deceptions that reveal a company about to go under. There's less violence than usual in this Spenser novel but more detecting, which may explain why there's little of the PI's tough sidekick Hawk but much of his psychologist girlfriend Susan, which may not please the many Spenser fans who grew tired years ago of the love banter between the soul mates. The novel ends with suspects crowded into a room to be questioned by Spenser, a classic yet tired climax that is emblematic of the tale: Parker is treading water here, albeit with some flair and a good deal of humor. One suspects that his heart belongs not to this story but to his other book due out this year, in May, the highly anticipated Jackie Robinson novel Double Play. (Mar. 8) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
This is one of Parkers best. His humor is fantastic. The story line is typical Parker. He can put more twists in a plot than most authors. Joe Mantegna does a great job. It is impossible to listen to this book without laughing out loud!!
Another great Spenser mystery. Complicated as Parker can make it. I really like Joe Mantegna as narrator. He makes a great Spenser. Plus he does the female characters well too. I would listen to it again and I know how it turns out. And ya gotta love Hawk.
When an author is as prolific as Robert B. Parker, some books are going to be better than others. Bad Business, the 31st book in his Spenser series, is better than many of his later efforts.
Marlene Rowley hires Spenser to tail her husband, who she suspects of having an affair. Husband, Trent, is a big executive at an energy company called Kinergy (think Enron). It quickly becomes apparent that Spenser isn't the only PI following people around, and when Trent ends up murdered (in his Kinergy office no less), Marlene then engages Spenser to find the killer. Marlene is totally obnoxious and self-centered, and is not an easy person to work for. Spenser encountered lots of twists and turns, and not only is there the business angle, but there are also sex seminars, wife-swapping, an escort service, missing PI's, another murder and a host of other possible motives.
But what makes Parker so much fun to read is his witty, snappy, first-rate dialogue. Spenser interviewing possible suspects is a hoot. The conversation between Spenser and Hawk is even better. So even though this book could have been a bit longer, it was definitely worth reading. Too bad they stopped filming the Spenser television series, as Bad Business would have made one dandy episode.
AMAZON.COM READER'S REVIEW
by Robert Parker, Read by Joe Mantegna (star of the "made-for-cable" series Spenser for Hire) 5 CDs - 6 hours
This is the first Parker audio that I have listened to, and as I understand it, this is number 31 in the series! Loks like I only have 30 to go to catch up!
After talking to others who are familiar with this series, it has been said that this is a classic Robert Parker novel! If this one is indicative of his other works, I would categorize them as "Cotton Candy for the Brain".
The main storyline follows Spenser being hired by a doubting wife to keep tabs on her husband to see if he is cheating on her, and at the same time, Spenser runs into another detective hired by the husband to keep tabs on the wife to see if she is cheating on him. Throw in another detective who is keeping an eye on the husband's girlfriend, and it starts to get a little confusing. Toss in a couple of murders, and some Corporate book cooking, and things get heated up.
You'll find nothing groundbreaking in this audio - there are no inovative detective techniques, not any high-tech equipment. What you will find is an entertaining listen! Apparently, all the regular characters are present, and the dialog between them snaps with wit, wisdom and humor. The constant banter and the quips shooting back and forth are great!
The mystery aspect of the book is fine, only if a little transparent, but you probably don't listen to books of this genre for intricate plots.
I enjoyed it! I will probably request more of PArker's audios if I see any of them show up in the postings.
This is a great series and Spenser and his cohorts are part of a well developed series of novels. There is great detail about each character (even the dog) and they become even more meaningful as one continues to read other novels in the series. This detail extends to the location of the novel, usually in Boston or proximity, which also provides continuity to the reader. Great literature, perhaps not, but I can't wait to pick up another novel, that I haven't read, in the series.
A cheating husband and a wayward wife provide Spenser with an unconventional and dangerous surveillance job.
When Marlene Cowley hires Spenser to see if her husband, Trent, is cheating on her, he encounters more than he bargained for; he finds not only a two-timing husband, but a second investigator as well, hired by the husband to look after his wife. As a result of their joint efforts, Spenser soon finds himself investigating both individual depravity and corporate corruption.
It seems the folks in the Cowleys'circle have become enamored of radio talk-show host Darrin O'Mara, whose views on courtly love are clouding some already fuzzy minds with the notion of cross-connubial relationships. O'Mara's brand of sex therapy is unconventional at best, unlawful--and deadly--at worst. Then a murder at Kinergy, where Trent Cowley is CEO, sends Spenser in yet another direction. Apparently, the unfettered pursuit of profit has a price.
When Marlene Rowley hires Spenser to follow her cheating husband, Spenser finds not only a two-timing spouse, but another detective hired to shadow the wayward Marlene. Not the most trusting couple in town--but, as Spenser's about to learn, certainly one of the most dangerous....
Classic Parker and an enjoyable read. My only beef about this one is that there are too many characters with similar sounding yuppie names that I kept losing track of who and what. Kind of like an Agatha Christie but not nearly as boring.
Spenser #31 finds the veteran Boston PI tackling corporate crime in a routine yet absorbing outing. As usual, Spenser enters the case at an angle, this time because he's hired by one Marlene Rowley to prove that her husband Trent, CFO of energy firm Kinergy, is cheating on her. Before long the PI learns that marital cheating is all the rage among Kinergy's players, with the hanky-panky orchestrated by radio personality Darrin O'Mara, who runs popular sex seminars on the side. Maybe all that cheating explains why Spenser keeps running into other PIs hired by Kinergy folk, but it doesn't point to why Trent is found shot dead at Kinergy headquarters.
Parker continues to write entertaining fiction. My only complaints: the books are such fast reading; and, he doesn't write fast enough. I look forward to his next one, because I've read all he's written.
When Marlene Rowley hires Spenser to follow her cheating husband, Spenser finds not only a two timing spouse, but another detective hired to shadow the wayward Marlene. Not the most trusting couple in town--but, as Spenser's about to learn, certainly one of the most dangerous.....
when marlene rowley hires spenser to follow her cheating husband,spenser finds not only a two-timing spouse,but another detective hired to shadow the wayward marlene.not the most trusting couple in town-but,as sopensers about to learn,certainly one of the most dangerous