Monday, May 25, 2015

"First the tide rushes in and plants a kiss on the shore" Lyrics

In "The Journal of Popular Culture," Scott R. Christianson writes about tough talk and wisecracks. "...the hardboiled detective/narrator talks all the time to the reader. He talks tough and he talks smart but mainly - as the narrator of the story as well as the protagonist - he talks a lot."

As an example of the above, Robert Parker's wonderful P.I., Spenser, demonstrates in Parker's "Stardust," published in 1990.

Spenser is asked to protect a spoiled, temperamental TV star, Jill Joyce. She stars in TV's Fifty Minutes and has been filming the TV show from Boston.

The story in "Stardust" seems realistic as we learn that someone has been harassing Jill and she demands protection. She shows that on the TV show she may be a star but off screen she's something else.

When violence erupts and someone on the TV crew is killed, Spenser goes into action to find the killer.

Jill drinks to excess and seems like a sex starved nymphomaniac, but underneath her outward persona, Spenser recognizes fear and vulnerability.

He investigates her background and learns things that make him sad to see. How can someone who had to rise above misfortune gain the public spotlight? And, at what cost?

There are lessons of endearment and loyalty that Spenser demonstrates to his own love, psychologist, Susan and we see the empathy Spenser shows for a number of people associated with Jill whose lives have also been shattered.

For a dish of mystery topped with a flavoring of humor, this can be the main course.

2 comments:

Cindy Dy said...


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