Now & Then
Robert B. Parker
Putnam, Oct 2007, $25.95, 309 pp.
Every once in a while a case comes along that affects Spencer profoundly and Dennis Doherty’s need to find out the truth is one of them. Dennis’s wife is acting very strange, staying out late and acting distant. He doesn’t want to believe his wife is cheating on him but he needs to know the truth; Spencer finds it in the form of a tape he make of the wife making love with another man Perry Alderson.
Spencer doesn’t feel the usually closure that comes with the end of a case so he has a friend of his follow Dennis’s wife Jordan. She is shot by while walking; Spencer’s friend kills him. Not too much later Dennis’s body is found in the water, the victim of the same killer. The lover of Dennis’s wife, who has ties to terrorists is probably the person who ordered the hit and Spencer wants him to pay for those crimes. Making sure that Susan is protected at all times Spencer blackmails Perry with the unedited tape that would bring the FBI on him. Tracing Perry’s background, he discovers things about the man that would earn him a lethal injection and he intends to gather enough proof for a successful prosecution.
All the Robert B. Parker trademarks are present in the latest Spencer tale including male bonding of a humorous sort, with teasing repartee and the use of dry wit to score points off one another. There is plenty of action and fun yet for the first time in a long time, Mr. Parker shows how deep the relationship between Susan and Spencer really is and how bottomless their love goes. Spencer shows a vulnerable side to his personality that endears him further to his fans. NOW & THEN is a great entry in this long running saga.