Ranked Reading for July 2014

16158516Greetings one and all to another edition of Ranked Reading.

This month I have a non-sci-fi book but one that I’ve been asked by members of the crew to read and review. One of my personal favorite authors is Robert B Parker. Upon his death I feared that I would no longer be able to read the adventures of private detective Spenser or Paradise Mass. Police Chief Jesse Stone. It was with more than a little surprise that I found that these beloved characters had been turned over to new authors. Jesse Stone has been turned over to Michael Brandman while Spenser has been turned over to Ace Atkins. So, without further adieu, I present this month’s book “Robert B Parker’s Wonderland, A Spenser Novel by Ace Atkins”.

Henry Cimoli is a former boxer and owner of the gym with a boxing area in the back where Spenser and Hawk like to workout has a problem. A Las Vegas casino owner is trying to force he the neighbors in his condo complex to sellout. Their objective for the property is to level the condos and an old dog racing track already in their control and put up a casino. After being confronted by a couple of thugs Henry does what he’s never done before . . . cash in a favor with Spenser. With Hawk working out of state on another job it’s up to Spenser and his new apprentice Zebulon Sixkill to get to the bottom of things. Many hard lessons are learned by Sixkill and the trail has he and Spenser paying visits to the Massachusetts mob. A professional friendship is also placed on the rocks as the erstwhile casino owner turns up dead. Ace Atkins nails both the Spenser and Zebulon Sixkill characters with a style reminiscent (in my opinion) to the great Mr Parker himself. This is a must read for any Spenser fan. My Rank: Admiral!

On a supplemental note. If your favorite character is “Jesse Stone” Michael Brandman has got that character down as well. I’m a bit long here but I would rank “Robert B Parker’s Killing the Blues a Jesse Stone novel” as Vice Admiral. Pick it up when you pick up “Wonderland” and enjoy the ride.

Until next time. The ship’s reading lamp is definitely . . . ON!