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Bad Business: Spencer, Book 31 Audio Download – Unabridged

4.5 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Format: Hardcover
The latest Spenser is more of the same, except that the older he gets then the more comfortable he gets, and correspondingly less dangerous and less exciting. Even Hawk, and this is heresy I know, even Hawk comes over as ever-so-slightly loveable, friendly and tolerant.
The plot is ok, if a bit intricate, and at times it's difficult to remember exactly who all the characters are. Having worked out who they all are, it becomes increasingly difficult to care a great deal.
Having said this, we're still talking "Spenser", and it's still Robert B Parker. So the result is still far superior to most of the competition. Spenser fans like me will read and enjoy. New readers would be better advised to start with the earlier stories.
Finally, and I'm sure I'm not alone in this, I get the feeling that we're not far away from the time when Spenser and Jesse Stone (of the "other" Parker series) get to meet in print. They are referred to by mutual acquaintances more and more in their books.
Now, that will be one to savour.
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By A Customer on 3 July 2004
Format: Hardcover
This book is not one of the author's best, but if you like Spenser novels, give it a go. I think the problem I had with it was that I found it difficult to care about any of the people who Spenser was trying to help. However, the interaction between Susan and Spenser was as good as ever and I liked Hawk's role in things. I gave this book 4 stars but I don't regret buying this book in hardback rather than waiting for the paperback which I think says a lot.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Spenser novels of Robert Parker are characterized by witty, sarcastic dialog between the characters. Even when the plot line is weak, the way they speak to each other always delivers a high level of entertainment. In this story, Marlene Crowley hires Spenser to follow her husband to determine if he is cheating on her. His name is Trent Crowley and he is Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at Kinergy, one of the most dynamic companies around. It is an energy trading company and rose from very small beginnings to an apparent powerhouse. Robert Cooper, the CEO of Kinergy and an expert glad-hander, has designs on a run for the U. S. Senate, so he wants to keep his image as clean as possible.
When Trent Crowley is murdered on the Kinergy premises, things change. Furthermore, Spenser finds a veritable daisy chain of wife swapping and private detectives following husbands and wives. As usual, Spenser makes enemies, one of which is Gavin, the chief of security at Kinergy. When Gavin is killed, there seems to be no reason for the murders. However, Spenser eventually determines the identity of the murderers, amid the additional discovery that Kinergy is a house of cards. The higher executives have been gradually selling off their stock in anticipation that it will quickly become nearly worthless. The ending is not a great dramatic one, as there is no shootout, just Spenser punching a man.
This story is taken directly from the events surrounding the collapse of Enron, with the exception of the internal mate-swapping and the murders, you could replace Kinergy with Enron and most of the story would be factual. I don't consider it one of Parker's best Spenser novels, but once again the quality of the dialog makes it very entertaining. Hawk and Vinnie Morris appear, but are not heavily involved, which is a disappointment. In my opinion, the conversations between Spenser and Hawk are the best dialog in the Spenser series.
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Format: Hardcover
Once again, Robert B. Parker has come up trumps with this story.
I haveread every Parker novel and I must say that this one is not one of hisbest. The plot is too complicated and, at times one does wonder about thevarious characters involved in the plot. Who is sleeping with whom andwhich one of the less likeable people in the story is the killer begin tomatter less and less as the story progresses.
Parker, however is a master of characterisation and dialogue. The maincharacters in each of the Spenser series surface again like old friends. Inever tire of Hawk, Susan, Quirk and Belson but most of all Spenser is atower of manly strength. When all others would have given up and gone homeSpenser is still there putting the World to rights. The dialogue in thisstory crackles, the wit and speed of it is dazzling and I found myselfchuckling just as I have over the last ten years or so reading the Spensernovels.
I can forgive Mr. Parker the imperfections in the storybecause, if it came down to a simple choice of reading matter I wouldchoose his books any day of the week. In fact I beat my own record andfinished this latest story in 48 otherwise busy hours.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was my first Spenser novel and it was excellent. The dialogue is crisp, the characters laconic, and there is no wasted motion. Spenser is an interesting character, defying current stereotype detectives who seem to be predominantly angst-ridden. Spenser is a full-on hero with no bad traits and top level skills. Big, tough, wise, sensitive, literary, intelligent, you name it and our boy's got it. Robert Parker makes no apology for his hero. He also avoids the preoccupation of other detective writers who insist on maximum gore and the inevitable diabolically clever serial killer. The Spenser stories are a bit gentler and more realistic (except that Spenser seems to be able to shoot people fairly frequently without the cops being too bothered about it). These are very enjoyable reads and highly recommended.
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