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Book Review of Split Image (Jesse Stone, Bk 9)

Split Image (Jesse Stone, Bk 9)
reviewed on + 105 more book reviews

I've read everything Parker wrote up to and including this book. He used to be one of my favorite light reads, and I was sorry to hear he had passed away.

The last few of his books haven't been up to his earlier high standard, and this one is a case in point; I found myself rather bored by the time I was half way through it. While he was once the master of snappy dialogue, there needs to be a little something besides snappy dialogue to support the story. His latest work seems to have become just commentary on people's sex habits and their therapy experiences. There were, of course, a couple murders but I got the feeling he just threw them in so people would think it was good old cops and robbers - this was more cops and their shrinks than cops and robbers - makes you wonder if Parker was seeing a therapist at the end of his life.

His protagonist, Jesse Stone, the police chief of Paradise MA, who has had a drinking problem as long as we've known him, spends most of his time worrying about whether or not he's a real alcoholic. Jesse's squeeze of the moment, Sunny Randall, who had a series of Parker books with her as protagonist and fellow therapy seeker, makes the pronouncement that while Jesse drinks too much once in a while, he's certainly no alcoholic - and he's all too willing to buy into that diagnosis.

Speaking as an alcoholic who hasn't had a drink in over forty years, let me say this about that: non-alcoholics don't waste a lot of time worrying about whether they're alcoholic or not. Alcoholism is the only disease I know of that does its best to convince you that you don't have it. The fellowship I belong to says we can't identify anyone but ourselves as alcoholic, but if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, chances are pretty good it's a duck. Jesse Stone's been quacking for a long time...

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