Monday, September 30, 2013

Starktober: An Introduction

Tomorrow sees the beginning of a new series and reading project here on Antick Musings: Starktober.

I'm reading through all of Richard Stark's books -- the twenty-four Parker novels, probably the greatest sustained achievement in mid-century noir, and, interspersed with them, the four related Grofield books -- in order of publication, and I aim to write about one of them at least every weekday in October. So tomorrow we'll begin with The Hunter, and, if I can manage to squeeze the extras onto weekends, I hope to hit Dirty Money on Halloween. There may be a few quote posts along the way, as necessary.

The model is James Bond Daily, a similar reading project from 2009 where I read all of the Ian Fleming Bond books straight through and blogged about them.

If this inspires you, nearly all of Stark's novels are available in very nice uniform editions from the University of Chicago Press, which you can either buy directly from them, from that major online bookstore, or from your local independent.

And, if you don't know, Richard Stark was a pseudonym for one of the greatest mystery writers of the 20th century, Donald E. Westlake, whose Dortmunder books are as definitive as funny crime thrillers as the Parker novels are as dark crime thrillers. Westlake wrote a lot of other stuff as well -- generally excellent, and incredibly varied -- from humorous caper novels to dark psychological thrillers, from SF stories to a western, and from a nonfiction book about a minor invasion to a number of screenplays, including the Oscar-nominated The Grifters.

Starktober begins tomorrow.

The Posts of Starktober:
Starktober 1: The Hunter 
Starktober 2: The Man With the Getaway Face
Starktober 3: The Outfit
Starktober 4: The Mourner
Starktober 5: The Score
Starktober: Internal Dialogue
Starktober 6: The Jugger
Starktober 7: The Seventh
Starktober 8: The Handle
Starktober 9: The Damsel
Starktober 10: The Rare Coin Score
Starktober 11: The Green Eagle Score
Starktober: Who Do You Want to Be?
Starktober 12: The Dame
Starktober 13: The Black Ice Score
Starktober 14: The Sour Lemon Score
Starktober 15: The Blackbird
Starktober 16: Deadly Edge
Starktober 17: Slayground
Starktober 18: Lemons Never Lie
Starktober 19: Plunder Squad
Starktober 20: Butcher's Moon
Starktober 21: Comeback
Starktober 22: Backflash
Starktober 23: Flashfire
Starktober 24: Firebreak
Starktober 25: Breakout
Starktober 26: Nobody Runs Forever
Starktober 27: Ask the Parrot
Starktober 28: Dirty Money
Starktober Lagniappe: Jimmy the Kid
Starktober: The Aftermath

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