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September 17, 2014

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Robert B. Parker, author of the Spenser novels, dead at 77

by Bob Sassone, posted Jan 19th 2010 2:00PM
Robert B. ParkerJust last week I posted one of my favorite episodes of the 80s ABC series Spenser: For Hire, and now comes word that the author of the novels, Robert B. Parker, has died at the age of 77.

No details yet, but Parker died at his desk in his Cambridge, MA home. When you're a writer that's probably the way to go.

If you only know Spenser from the TV series that starred Robert Urich (which was great), you should pick up the novels, too. He's been writing them since the 70s and they're quite good, very engaging first person mystery stories set in Boston. He started a new series of book based around the Jesse Stone character (who happens to live my neck of the woods), and while I've never read those novels I have seen the TV movies featuring Tom Selleck as Stone and they are very good. There's a new Jesse Stone novel coming out in May. Not sure if Parker had finished a new Spenser novel or not (his latest is The Professional).

I think it's time for a Spenser: For Hire marathon.

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Spenser: For Hire - The Choice: Standout Episodes

by Bob Sassone, posted Jan 14th 2010 8:00PM
Spencer for Hire(Originally aired October 4, 1985).

It's easy to forget how good a show Spenser: For Hire was. It was on for only three seasons over 20 years ago, it's not on DVD, and I don't think that it's being shown on television right now. But oh, this show was so good.

Robert Urich was the perfect Spenser and Avery Brooks was the perfect Hawk (years later, reading the books, I could only see Urich and Brooks as the characters). And on-location filming in Boston truly added a nice, realistic touch to the show (unlike the later movies, which were filmed in Toronto or some similar place). This show had smart writing, too, and the first person narration? Robert Parker was wrong when he said it was bad.

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