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4.2 out of 5 stars19
4.2 out of 5 stars
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If you have liked either of the Sunny Randall or Jesse Stone series, you'll kick yourself if you don't read Blue Screen in which the two combine to detect. Propinquity leads them to do more than detect, and the emerging relationship is the high point of this book. The relationship is nudged along by significant events in the lives of Richie and Jenn.

But as my three star rating suggests, the book has problems. For the many people who found the sexual context of Sea Change in the Jesse Stone to be disturbing, be prepared to be disturbed again. In addition, the plot is remarkably unrealistic for Robert B. Parker. It's more like the plot of someone who is working on his first novel. The unrealism serves to make you feel like you are reading a book with great dialogue, but you won't be inside the story like you are with Mr. Parker's usual efforts.

So what's the story? Sunny Randall is hired to be a bodyguard for Ms. Erin Flint, an astonishing-looking action actress with limited acting ability, while she prepares for an additional career as a professional baseball player for the Connecticut Nutmegs, a team owned by her sleazy-movie producer and bed partner, Buddy Bollen. Sunny is a little puzzled by this job when she arrives to find Erin already surrounded by enough male security to stop a small squadron of infiltrators. What can Sunny's 120 pound body do that theirs cannot? Erin reports a strong dislike of men and wants to be in charge. But she's clearly on Bollen's leash.

Erin's clearly into the whole movie star routine and has a retinue to prove it.

Then, one of her entourage, Misty Tyler, is found with a broken neck. Erin insists that Sunny investigate and local police chief Jesse Stone goes along with the request.

The bulk of the book is a very slow police procedural as Sunny pulls forth one fact after another in a series of investigations in California and Boston. Along the way, she's helped by an old lover, her former uncle-in-law (Felix Burke), the state police and her guardian, Spike. Sunny uncovers a particularly tawdry background in which everyone is hiding what their true relationships are.

Spenser fans will be thrilled by two cameos by Sunny's shrink, Dr. Susan Silverman, in which Sunny explores her feelings about love and intimacy.

As the book ends, you'll be thinking about Sunny and Jesse . . . and trying to forget the story other than the parts that cover their romance.
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on 20 June 2006
Let me start by saying that I did not care for Parkers last two outings "Sea Change" or "Appaloosa" (As a westerner, I wish he'd give up the western genre, he just is not believable). This book however brings back the Parker I love in a faced paced detective story, full of great characters that packs a punch! I love the way he brings together Boston PI Sunny Randall and Police Chief Jesse Stone, makes for some romantic sparks!. Sunny is hired by a cheesy Movie producer to protect his girlfriend, Ms. Erin Flint, who is also trying to become the first female pro baseball player. Then Ms. Flints sister turns up dead. The fun of this book is mostly the budding relationship between the two detectives as the mystery is fairly transparent. Overall a solid four star read!
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on 31 January 2013
Cross over novels are exciting for any fan, seeing two of their favourite characters interact. Robert B Parker's Sunny Randall and Jesse Stone do a lot more than just a bit of interacting in `Blue Screen' a crime novel that seems to forget about the mystery of murder and instead is interested in the mystery of love. Sunny is called to Paradise to protect Erin Flint, a movie starlet who is about to turn professional baseball player. When a woman is found dead, Sunny must work with local police chief Jesse to uncover who the killer is and, in doing so, reveal the secret past of Erin.

Parker has a very distinct writing voice and it is as ever present here in `Blue Screen'. The voice is a great one, all scenery chewing prose and witty asides. The problem is that most of his book feels the same and his characters blend into one. This is an issue when having a female and a male lead. Both Sunny and Jesse seem interchangeable at times. It would make sense that they would be attracted to one another if you look for someone who has similar values as yourself - they are essentially the same person.

Perhaps you are wondering why I am discussing the central relationship of the characters in the book and not the murder mystery. This is because the relationship dominates the book and side-lines a crime story that becomes boring. I enjoyed being around Sunny and Jesse, but the final third of this book is more romance than thriller. When I pick up a crime novel I like a little more crime for my buck than Parker provides. It's just lucky that he is such an entertaining writer as this flawed book still manages to entertain.
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on 21 January 2013
I'm a big fan of Robert B Parker but this book is so disappointing. It's a badly written book that Parker seems to have churned out just to bring Jesse Stone and Sunny Randall together. Their relationship is pure Mills and Boon. To make matters worse the mystery part of the book is not only unbelievable but it is also so slow. If this was the first Robert Parker book that I'd read I wouldn't read any more.
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on 28 February 2015
I have read Jesse Stone and liked them very much and now reading Sunny Randall I think they are the same type of reading with the characters changing sex but having said that I still find them a good hold you there read and shall have all of them eventually
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on 6 January 2015
Through the Jessie Stone TV series I discovered author Robert B Parker who wrote the Sunny Randall novels, I have now read and enjoyed all of them and thoroughly recommend them. I found them both exciting and amusing, I wish that there were more.
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on 4 April 2013
Another fabulous story about the private eye "Sunny Randall, this lady goes from strength to strength.Tough but tender hearted!
Loved it!!
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on 10 May 2015
As yet I have not read this book but going on Robert Parkers previous ones it will meet all my expectations.
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on 19 August 2014
An unread Robert Parker is always a treat to look forward to, and this was no exception.
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on 16 May 2016
Robert b Parker, female Jesse Stone, a day's read, entertaining but short.
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