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Robert B. Parker's Ironhorse (Cole and Hitch Novel) Hardcover – 8 Jan 2013

3.0 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Putnam Adult (8 Jan. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399158111
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399158117
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 16.8 x 4.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,121,423 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

Praise for "Robert B. Parker's Ironhorse "
"Hits with the intensity of an eight-gauge shotgun blast. "Ironhorse" is written by first-time novelist Robert Knott, taking over this series by the prolific Robert B. Parker. Knott was co-writer of the screenplay for the film version of "Appaloosa, " and it's obvious from "Ironhorse" that Virgil and Everett's fates are in excellent hands. Local readers will also enjoy the descriptions of 19th-century Oklahoma, as well as the joys and troubles of rail travel during that time, in addition to a rip-snorting tale full of sparse dialogue seasoned with wit as dry as an Oklahoma prairie wind and enough flying bullets and buckshot to fill a caboose."--"Tulsa World "
"Robert B. Parker's legion of fans will be thrilled with "Ironhorse." Robert Knott, co-writer of the screenplay for "Appaloosa"--Bob's remarkable western--has penned the next great saga featuring itinerant lawmen Everett Hitch and Virgil Cole. Knott's new novel reads just like vintage Parker and the storyline crackles with all the excitement and humor of what is a perfect continuation of the Hitch/Cole series. Parker fans are going to love it!"--Ed Harris, Academy Award-nominated actor
"Knott effortlessly handles the nonstop plot complications."--"Kirkus Reviews "
"Continues the classic Western tradition that the late Robert B. Parker featured in novels such as "Appaloosa "and "Blue-Eyed Devil.""--"NewsOK "
"[Knott] breathes life back into the characters Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch without missing a beat. He has the dialogue, the timing and the character of the two gunslingers-turned-marshals down. He has a new story. So it makes for a refreshing read. Parker would approve."--"Deseret News "
Additional Praise for the Cole and Hitch Novels
"Blue-Eyed Devil"
"You read Parker because he could tell a story and make you care about his characters. "Blue-Eyed Devil."..only hones Parker's legacy as an ace storytel --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

About the Author

Robert B. Parker was the author of seventy books, including the legendary Spenser detective series, the novels featuring Chief Jesse Stone, and the acclaimed Virgil Cole/Everett Hitch westerns, as well as the Sunny Randall novels. Winner of the Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Award and long considered the undisputed dean of American crime fiction, he died in January 2010.
Robert Knott is an actor, writer, and producer. His extensive list of stage, television, and film credits include the feature film "Appaloosa" based on the Robert B. Parker novel, which he adapted and produced with actor and producer Ed Harris. This is his first novel. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.


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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've been a fan of Robert B Parker for many years and I was looking forward to a continuation of the Cole/Hitch story. I wish I had saved my money.
Parker was renowned for the way he could draw a picture with the minimum of words. Robert Knott, on the other hand, seems not prepared to use one simple word where twenty more complcated ones will do.
An example -
" Virgil opened the loading gate of his Colt. He replaced the spent rounds with lead-filled casings and undented primers as he looked out of the cabin, watching the woods passing by."
What's wrong with, "Virgil reloaded his Colt."?
I don't need to know the details of which company ran which railways in Texas at the time, or what rolling stock they used. And I don't really care. Does it move the story along? No it doesn't so leave it out.
I should have known by the length of the book that it was going to be, to say the least, wordy, but I never anticipated quite how verbose an author Knott is. Ed Harris might have said, "Parker fans are going to love it!"
Not this one. Don't make the mistake I did - save your money!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have enjoyed this series of novels. The dialogue between the two main protagonists is oblique and a little odd but it worked in the film Appaloosa. There is a lot of interesting detail about 1870's American railroads and a believable plot.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have been reading,and enjoying,the work of Robert B.Parker since Penguin published the first three Spenser novels in Europe in 1976.Tne quality of Parker's books was a little up and down-which was probably inevitable given the number which he produced.At no time did he ,however,publish a book as weak as Ironhorse.Several people have already commented on it.For me the dialogue was the most annoying factor.It fails hopelessly to capture the Parker voice.
Somebody suggested that some more Sunny Randall novels would be welcome.I can only support that - but, please, executors Of R.B.Parker's estate or whoever is making the decisions get a competent writer to provide them.No more Ironhorses please!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an exciting western adventure novel and it does recall Parker's characters and some of the time his style. However the style slips at several points, sometimes with the dialogue which can achieve a stilted effect which Parker avoided. Parker's spare dialogue drives the characters forward, Knott's merely reiterates that they are rather taciturn people.
The voice of the novel is still meant to be that of Everett Hitch who has now apparently become an expert on modern developments in railway engineering as he can reel off facts about new braking systems. This is obviously meant to make us admire the amount of research, (in the sense of looking things up in books) that Knott has undertaken. Many modern writers engage in this but Parker never did. Unfortunately it takes away from the credibility of Hitch as we already know him. It might have been credible that he would read information from a pamphlet to Virgil, but not that he would know it off by heart.
Along with a careful study of railway braking Knott might have looked more carefully at 19th century social attitudes. Parker presented Cole and Hitch as decent men who took people on their merits, Knott's characters would fit well into a 21st century liberal arts college.

Overall, as I suggest in my title, this is a fun read, but on at least every other page one winces at something that is not Robert Parker. I shall be passing this on to a local charity shop and I shall not bother with any others.
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Format: Paperback
There is something unnatural about reading a new Western story featuring our favourite Marshall and Deputy (Cole and Hitch) on an e-reader. I have a Kindle. I love it. Obsess over it, even. But some things sit right with me and some things don't. And holding in my hand an old fashioned hardcover of an old fashioned western sits as right with me as right can be. So I am glad that I purchased this in HC, even though the kindle version is not available yet, and we don't know when it will be. Now as for the story itself...

To begin with, the story is unique in that it begins with a gunfight in one of the most original settings you can imagine. The usual snappy dialogue that we all know and love is provided for us by Knott in abundance but the switch between speech and action does not gel as well as it used to in the previous titles in the series. Don't get me wrong, the characterisation is there, the plot is becoming apparent at a furious pace as events unfold but patches of it are classic and yet other patches are filled with tedious and tiresome pieces of misinformation that we don't really need to know unless we are taking a course in 19th century mechanical engineering. Which we aren't.

As you progress through the book you get used to the writing style used by Knott in this volume of this series and it sons begins to read like a Cole and Everitt tale written by the master himself. You soon begin to ignore the small chapters, as well as the over supply of information that is also apparent at some points in the story. But the story itself grabs you by he ghoulies and you can't help but wonder how the book will end. The characterisation in the second half begins to shine and you find yourself hating the bad guys almost as much as you admire the good ones.
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