Monday, September 17, 2012

The Outfit

Le husband and I dropped in the library after lunch yesterday to snag several graphic novels -- I was peering through the volumes for a friend while H was pocketing whatever suited his fancy.

We came away with a dozen assorted comics, including stories about Spiderman (for the friend), Batman (for me) and Iron Man (for Husband), along with some miscellaneous stories.

I decided to give one of Husband's books a try -- it was adapted and illustrated by Darwyn Cooke, who we both admire for his 60's style drawings (He also wrote/illustrated The New Frontier, which you should definitely check out -- there are two volumes, the second of which you can find here).  He wrote four graphic novels about Parker, adapted from stories by the author, Richard Stark (a pen name of Donald Westlake).

While I don't usually go for noir storylines, The Outfit was a solid heist story with wonderful illustrations.   The antihero main character is a James Bond type (on the wrong side of the law) who learns that someone from the past wants him dead.  He hunts them down, hitting where it hurts (here's where the heists come in), pairing up with old friends to pull off the robberies with seeming ease.

The story is dark, but the drawings keep it from being too gritty.  One reviewer on Amazon disliked the book because Parker didn't really have too difficult of a time taking down crime bosses and pulling heists -- but I think this story is more about WHY you don't mess with guys like Parker.  Because they're ruthless and they will .  It's more a cautionary tale than anything else.

If you enjoy heists, noir, crime, or pulp fiction, you might want to give this one a try.

It IS Volume II of the Parker graphic novels, so for background, read the first novel, The Hunter.

I'll be seeing you on Write Wednesday with an interview, and an update on my writing progress.

Keep reading!

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