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Early Autumn (The Spenser Series Book 7) by [Parker, Robert B.]
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Early Autumn (The Spenser Series Book 7) Kindle Edition

4.8 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Length: 226 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Description

Product Description

A bitter divorce is only the beginning. First the father hires thugs to kidnap his son. Then the mother hires Spenser to get the boy back. But as soon as Spenser senses the lay of the land, he decides to do some kidnapping of his own.

With a contract out on his life, he heads for the Maine woods, determined to give a puny 15 year old a crash course in survival and to beat his dangerous opponents at their own brutal game.

From the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Robert B. Parker is the author of more than fifty books. He lives in Boston.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2611 KB
  • Print Length: 226 pages
  • Publisher: Dell; Reissue edition (Nov. 11 2009)
  • Sold by: Random House Canada, Incorp.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002W3BU02
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #76,569 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Spenser's sauntering, subtle swagger spoke volumes: "I'm restless and bored. What worthy chatter can I get into." Applying that approach this time, Spenser had entered the literary construction, no Elvis implied. Imaginary settings of shuffling leaves skittered through Spenser's hop, hip, and pause. The season was EARLY AUTUMN, but only in mood and theme. The plot opened in January.

Lighting the scene of Spenser's recently seated new office location, a flickering female of many poses, the now famous Patty Giacomin, put an edge on Spenser's curiosity and he began wondering (in essence) what caused X Chromosomes to grow gangrene. The plot pivoted around Patty for a while as Spenser rescued her lost son. In following scenes, the cat-like P. I. became curious about a 15-year-old stuck in a litany of shrugs. With no leeway to "lick em" Spenser joined Paul's rap (no shrink intended). By the time Spenser had met, "saved," and matched Paul Giacomin, I had been pleasantly warmed into "Do The Shrug Shuffle."

Autumn was the symbolic season, but what was the reason for Spenser to further his feisty, full-of-it facade by adopting and growing a kid.

For me, teenage chemical chaos isn't easy to cozy into (no wanna go back). But, Spenser sidled through Paul's Sea of Sleazy and set up male bonding before a fish could flop. Read and watch the deceivingly easy maneuvers of Spenser's pairing with Paul's paused psyche. See a master at work, and a kid whose sour luck had just turned sweet, by simple, easy treats on Private Eye Lonely Street, which had suddenly lost the edge of ennui.

Spenser is Goooood.

Not so much "Good" as opposed to Evil (that, too), but good like, "What part of `cool' do you understand.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
In Early Autumn, Spenser finally emerges from the shadow of the traditional hard-boiled detective to become the full-rounded, complex character that will evolve tremendous over the next set of books in this series, arguable the best of the lot.
At the surface level, the story seems like Parker's attempt to remake the regrettable "God Bless the Child," which was a truly terrible story with an unfortunate resolution. It's the same basic story: screwed up kid is screwed up even worse by awful parents. But in this case, Spenser realizes the kid, Paul Giacomin, doesn't deserve to be reunited with his folks. Thus begins a rather Odyssean saga wherein Spenser begins to make a man of the boy. The story clearly is set in its time (early 80's), where no one thought anything of an adult taking an unrelated boy into a cabin in Maine. Such a story could not be written today without incurring the wrath of a thousand social service agents.
"Early Autumn" adds a much-needed layer of emotional depth to the formerly go-go Spenser, setting the stage for the excellent "wounded Spenser" novels that will soon follow.
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Spenser gets involved with a child custody case between Patty and Mel Giacomin. Paul is the 15-year-old kid, and his parents are using him in an adolescent tug-of-war game. Neither really cares much about Paul, and Paul has retreated into apathetic shrugs. When Spenser brings Paul back from Mel's, Patty doesn't really care and makes Spenser babysit Paul for the night because she's "busy". Off goes Spenser to read "A Distant Mirror" by Barbara Tuchman.
Spenser feels sorry for Paul and ends up a live-in bodyguard and fends off Buddy and another guy - at which point Paul starts to show some interest in life. Spenser tries to be a good role model for Paul. Becoming in essence a permanent babysitter while Patty "hides", Spenser teaches Paul how to build a cabin in Maine. Paul has a simple-fix-the-kid plan which involves teaching Paul to run, box and dress nicely and that suddenly the kid will gain control. Sure enough, it works, even though in real life the chance of success would have been nil. That's a pretty soap-opera solution to the difficult problems of adolescence.
Spenser and Susan comment that "It's early autumn for Paul" - that he has to grow up quickly to escape from his difficult parents. Spenser pretty much explains his entire philosophy of life and means of living to both Paul and to the reading audience. He has numerous literary quotes.
Hawk refuses a hit commission on Spenser for only 5K. Spenser and Susan, the "surrogate perfect parents", take Paul on trips to New York and Boston, and in the end Spenser blackmails Paul's parents so Paul can fulfill his secret dream to go off to Ballet school.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Robert B. Parker, Early Autumn (Dell, 1981)

It may still be a little too early in the game to call the Spenser novels some of the great twentieth-century detective fiction. There cannot, however, be any doubt as to the continuing popularity of, and loyalty to, the line of novels written by Robert Parker about the combination renaissance man/gumshoe. Over the twenty-odd years since The Godwulf Manuscript hit the shelves, Spenser fans have accumulated like mosquitoes in a light fixture. We've watched the characters, consistent over the space of more than twenty novels, grow and change, not just reflecting the spirit of the times (go back and read about some of the godawful getups Spenser dressed in in the mid-seventies, and you can easily imagine Spenser himself looking back and saying, "what WAS I thinking?") but reflecting real changes in the characters themselves. Robert Parker has
achieved something remarkable; he has given us a quarter century in the lives of a select few people in real-time (for the most part) without the storyline ever degenerating into soap opera.

Like all types of evolution/natural selection, though, it doesn't all go at a steady stream. Sometimes the changes in characters come in short, uneven spurts. Early Autumn is one of those, and while I can't swear to it, I suspect that this book has probably garnered more fans for the venerable franchise than any other. If there is a definitive Spenser novel, it is Early Autumn.

Spenser is hired by beautiful divorced socialite Patty Giacomin to recover her son Paul, who's been kidnapped by her ex-husband. Spenser finds the job remarkably easy, at least until the ex-husband sends muscle to try and get the kid back again a few months later.
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