Fans of Donald Westlake’s hardboiled alter ego, Richard Stark, can rejoice. All of the Alan Grofield novels are back in print. Grofield served as a trusted partner in crime to the hardest of hard criminals, Parker. A stage actor who stole to support his summerstock company, he was a flamboyant and talkative foil to the ice cold bad man. Parker was constantly saying, “Shut up, Grofield.”
Grofield appeared in four Parker books, then was in four others featuring himself. Hard Case Crime brought back Lemons Never Lie over five years ago and now, University Of Chicago Press has brought back the other three, The Damsel, The Dame, and The Black Bird, now that they’ve republished the Parker series. With Grofield being a lighter character, the books run closer to Westlake’s comic Dortmunder series (beginning with Hot Rock) and are more adventure fiction than crime fiction. After being out of print for decades, it’s great to see the old crook back in action.
If you’d like to learn more about the world of Parker, our History Of Mystery Class will be discussing Richard Stark and the book The Outfit on May 6th at 7pm. We will have author Wallace Stroby (Cold Shot To The Heart and Kings of Midnight) calling in and there will be a viewing of the film version starring Rober Duvall beforehand at 4PM.