Books: The Outfit

This is the third book in the Parker series by Donald E Westlake writing as Richard Stark. The Parker series is what a paperback should be - an interesting story line dealt in an ambiguously superficial way. At the smae time, it is poetically written. The ambiguity makes us wonder about the good and the bad side of human nature. In this case, we think more about the bad side as Parker is an anti-hero. The style of writing prevents us from keeping the book down.

In the third book, Richard Stark starts the story with Parker escaping a murder attempt. Then he neatly ties with the first book in the series, The Hunter. There were many things Parker could have done when the story ended. But Parker did an entertaining detour in the second book. In the third book, he comes a full circle to demonstrate his threats weren't empty ones to the big boys termed as "The Outfit" in this series.

The story is simple. But the narration is captivating especially when Parker's threat is put into action. With simple words and a clear vision, Richard Stark describes the world of organized crime like how they operate and how this predictability can be used for heists. This books also demonstrates the funny side of the novelist when the Outfit brings in a consultant to find out what is going wrong. There is wisdom and irony rolled into this installment.

Like with any series, read the previous ones before taking this one.

The other books in the series are.
The Hunter
The Man With A Getaway Face

Tags: Books,Donald E Westlake,Richard Stark,Parker