Itinerant lawmen Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch return in the gritty new installment of the New York Times–bestselling series.
Appaloosa, the hometown of Territorial Marshals Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch, continues to prosper, but with prosperity comes a slew of new trouble: carpetbaggers, gamblers, migrants, peddlers, drifters, thieves, and whores, all boiling in a cauldron of excess and greed. And there’s a new menace in town: a wealthy, handsome easterner—and the owner of Appaloosa’s new casino—Boston Bill Black.
Boston Bill is flashy and bigger than life. He’s a prankster and a notorious womanizer, and with eight notches on the handle of his Colt, he’s rumored quick on the draw. When he finds himself wanted for a series of murders, he quickly vanishes. Cole and Hitch locate and arrest him, but Boston Bill escapes once again. Another murder sets the duo on his trail, eventually taking them back to Appaloosa—where one woman in particular may, or may not, prove to be the apple of Boston Bill’s eye.
About the Author
Robert B. Parker was the author of seventy books, including the legendary Spenser detective series, the novels featuring Police Chief Jesse Stone, and the acclaimed Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch westerns, as well as the Sunny Randall novels. Winner of the Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Award and long considered the undisputed dean of American crime fiction, he died in January 2010.
Robert Knott is an actor, writer, and producer, as well as the author of the New York Times bestsellers Robert B. Parker’s The Bridge, Robert B. Parker’s Bull River, and Robert B. Parker’s Ironhorse. His extensive list of stage, television, and film credits include the feature film Appaloosa, based on the Robert B. Parker novel, which he adapted and produced with actor and producer Ed Harris.
Read an Excerpt
Ruth Ann was running now, moving as fast as she could through thedense forest. The Comanche moon hanging directly above dimly lit herway through thick timber of pine, blackjack, birch, and maple.
Excerpted from "Robert B. Parker's Blackjack"
Copyright © 2017 Robert Knott.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I will never buy one of these rip off pseudo continuation books written in "the style" of a deceased author again. Instead of the Parker dialogue and action expected in a Vergil Cole and Evert Hitch Western this weak sister imitation presents a soap opera legal story line that is unimaginative and mediocre. If you have read and enjoyed Parker's work I suggest you pass on the post-demise offerings (and especially this abomination).
The late Robert B. Parker created several memorable characters, notably Spenser. But there was also Jesse Stone and Sunny Randall to round out the mystery/crime series. Parker also wrote standalones and a western series with the popular marshals Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch as protagonists. Robert Knott has continued to employ Virgil and Everett in his efforts to continue the westerns conceived by Parker. “Blackjack” is pretty much of a straightforward story in which a new casino is being built in their hometown of Appaloosa. An important employee, Boston Bill Black, a notorious gambler and womanizer, has hired two gunmen as bodyguards. One day, he is confronted in the street by a lawman from Denver seeking to serve him with an arrest warrant. One of the gunmen shoots the Denver representative, who eventually dies. It turns out that the warrant accuses Black of murdering the lawman’s wife, with whom he had had relations, in Denver. Virgil and Everett now turn their attention to capturing the gunman and bringing him to justice. Eventually Black also is captured, charged with murder and tried. He maintained his innocence, but was found guilty instead, sentenced to be hanged. The tale continues from that point, but to reveal any further plot would constitute a spoiler. There is little action but a lot of talk, as the novel wends its way to the conclusion which contains quite a twist. However, the story is hardly a western in the true sense except for the setting and some of the dialog. It could have taken place anywhere and at anytime. Still a good read, and it is recommended.
I love Robert Knott's continuation of Virgil and Everett. The stories are always interesting and the dialogue is a scarcity of words that fits in with the lifestyle on the frontier. There's always an interesting story to be told and with each new book, I feel like I'm coming home to family. I think Robert Parker would approve.
I was a First Read Winner of this book, and though I don't normally lean towards Westerns, I was intrigued by the books description, and I really enjoyed it. This was my first book in the series and I was worried that I might be lost, but other than not knowing some of the backstory it was easy to follow, though I was initially a bit confused on who was who, the dialog reminded me a bit of Tombstone, but that was fine since I loved that movie. I liked the characters and the storyline and I had a real hard time putting the book down. Now I want to find out how it all got started and I can't wait to get the previous books in the series and hope that they are just as entertaining. Great Read.