sixkill-hc-234When this book was first handed out last month, people were excited to see so much white on the pages.  Our previous book was pretty dense reading and our group was looking for something lighter.

The short terse language kept things moving along and provided excellent characterization and humor.  And then a long thick paragraph of the description of Spencer taking down Sixkill provided a nice contrast!

But some did find the rapid fire dialogue a little annoying, even though it provided all of that nifty white space on the page.

One of our members started reading an audio version and couldn’t take it because of the “he said” “she said”.  And then when she started reading a paper version, the “he saids” and “she saids” continued to stand out and the reader’s voice (Joe Mantegna) continued to rattle around in her head.  So her experience wasn’t the best.

We found that, though we all enjoyed this book and most of us look forward to reading more by this author, in the end, we didn’t really care about the mystery of who killed the girl.  We were more interested in Z Sixkill and his development as a character and Spenser’s protégé, which is an interesting commentary on a book that’s full of action and plot.

Robert B. Parker is no longer alive, but his multiple series will be continued by other writers, for good or bad.  We agreed that it seems like it would be hard for another writer to re-create that distinctive Spenser voice and rhythm.  And the characters are so black and white, with, as Les put it, core aspects of their characters that are unflinching and never-changing.  We’ll be interested to see if the character of Z shows up in future stories.

Favorite characters?  Zebulon Sixkill, the cop, Spenser, and Susan

Least favorite?  Spoiled matinee idol Jumbo Nelson in all his gross obnoxiousness.  And the murdered girl’s parents are pretty special, too, especially the father.