You Practically Rock

Donald Westlake R.I.P
January 2, 2009, 6:08 pm
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Why Do The Good Die Young.

Why Do The Good Die Young.

Hmm, I really wanted to keep this blog as something light and meaningful and far away from the grim and gritty real life that we inhabit, but sometimes things happen and people get sad and then I get sad and I realize that part of me life has completely and utterly changed. In saying that the only thing that’s really changed for me is realizing that never again will I read a new book by Donald Westlake.

The man was one of the masters of noir, and his books were a breeze to read filled to the brim with ultra violence and cruelty. I loved them to pieces.

According to numerous sources, author Donald Westlake died on New Year’s Eve in Mexico of an apparent hear attack on his way to dinner. He was 75.

Over the course of his career, Westlake had written more than 90 books, employing a number of pen-names, arguably the most famous of which was “Richard Stark,” under which he wrote the Parker series of novels.

Promo art from Cooke's adaptation of Westlake's Parker series.

Promo art from Cooke's adaptation of Westlake's Parker series.

Westlake was working with acclaimed comics creator Darwyn Cooke on graphic novel adaptations of the first four Parker novels for IDW Publishing, The Hunter (aka Point Blank), The Man with the Getaway Face, The Outfit, and The Mourner. I cannot wait for these but it will be a bitter sweet read.

Westlake is survived by his wife, four sons from previous marriages, three stepchildren and four grandchildren.

You can treat yourself to some excerpts from his books here

I honestly cannot urge all of you to go out and read his books. they’re quick reads, dense with lots of action and beautiful turn of phrases. If you liked Sin City’s murky values I really cannot recommend his books enough. He was also a bitterly clever and hilarious writer, it’s a HUGE loss to fans of crime novels, heck just fiction in general.

Rest in peace sweet prince.


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