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Hush Money    by Robert B. Parker order for
Hush Money
by Robert B. Parker
Order:  USA  Can
Berkley, 2000 (1999)
Hardcover, Paperback, Audio

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* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Spenser, Hawk, Susan, and a myriad of other arresting characters - what more could one ask of a book? Spenser is approached by Hawk on behalf of his friend and mentor's son to find out why the son was denied tenure at the University. Susan asks him to help a friend of hers discover who her stalker is. As is usual in Spenser's life, everything is not what it seems and the plot delves into homophobia, blackmail, car bombing, mayhem, tailing, the stalking already mentioned and plenty of the wonderful one liners readers have come to expect in Parker's books.

The Boston Globe proclaimed Spenser 'the very model of a modern major shamus.' And so he is. He's upscale, cool with his choices in his life, and a matter-of-fact kind of guy. Laid back. Secure in his convictions. Dedicated to his love for Susan. And he's joint owner of Pearl, the wonder dog. Hush Money takes off running and never stops for breath, just taking short breaks on most pages for humor. Spenser's relationship with his friend Hawk defies description. Each seems the extension of the other.

Only one small thing puzzled me. When Spenser's car is blown up, he's seemingly unaffected by it. I'd at least be slightly miffed if not downright mad. Then he drives his car later, never mentioning that he obtained another vehicle. Just a little off kilter there. But I would excuse Parker anything as long as he keeps writing Spenser novels.

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