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Another fine mess

Reader fan critic teacher reader fan.

Currently reading

Ottessa Moshfegh
Knife Fight and Other Struggles
David Nickle
Far from the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity
Andrew Solomon
The Good Lord Bird
James McBride
Ancillary Justice
Ann Leckie
Our Underachieving Colleges: A Candid Look at How Much Students Learn and Why They Should Be Learning More (New Edition)
Derek Bok
Dissident Gardens
Jonathan Lethem
Nightmare Movies: Horror on Screen Since the 1960s
Kim Newman
The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood
James Gleick
Complete Novels
Dashiell Hammett, Steven Marcus
Richard Stark’s Parker: The Outfit - Darwyn Cooke Even slowly savoring the images, this is an hour's delight, an icy tumbler of gin on a snowday.

3 stars for the story, 'though (as my pals brian and Greg have been arguing) you sink into Stark not for a given novel but for the mastery of the series. (Having just re-read Hammett's Red Harvest, it's clear: no one is as good as Hammett. But Stark is so lucidly brutal, and shatters timelines with such mad yet calm expertise, that you begin to realize: not many are as good as Stark.)

5 stars for Parker. Tough guys? Parker makes Bruce Willis look like Kenny G. Stark references Jack Palance as a visual inspiration, but I always see Lee Marvin. Either way, oversized knuckles, no smiles, and fuck the wisecracks. Talking's for taxmen and tea drinkers.

4 stars for Cooke--whose on-going project to do the whole Parker series is looking to be an epic graphic feast. The first captured the tone in sharp lines and blue shadows; the second begins to exploit other kinds of forms and fun, incorporating some of the flashbacks as a crime magazine excerpt, or a series of jobs envisioned in different styles. I look forward to the next.