Ace Atkins Ignites Boston In ‘Robert B. Parker’s Slow Burn’ [REVIEW]

Warehouse fire

Will Spenser be able to find out who is burning down Boston? Find out in ROBERT B. PARKER’S SLOW BURN by Ace Atkins. (Photo by Mikhail Kryshen, Flickr)

Robert B. Parker’s iconic Boston based private investigator, Spenser, is back and snarkier than ever in Slow Burn. When an old church is torched in the South End, three firefighters are killed in the blaze and Captain Jack McGee wants answers. But the church was just the beginning, and soon a rash of fires engulfs Boston, and neither the cops or the arson unit are able to turn up any viable leads. So McGee enlists the P.I.’s help, and together with Hawk, Sixkill, and the sultry Susan, Spenser starts his own investigation off the books, rattling cages and earning himself even more enemies than usual. But will he identify the culprit before it is too late?


G.P. Putnam’s Sons

This latest installment in the Spenser franchise is as cheeky, fun, and compulsively readable as anything Parker himself penned, and this is thanks to the brilliant writing of Ace Atkins. An Edgar-nominated author in his own right, he has done what few could. He hasn’t just picked up a beloved character and kept him limping along on life support, but he has breathed new life into him, maintaining Spenser’s dry wit and impertinent charm while erecting new stories on familiar ground.

A longtime reader of the Spenser series, I’ve loved the meddling P.I. for nearly as long as I can remember. As a kid, I watched Robert Urich on television as Spenser, long before I ever picked up one of the books. But then I discovered the novels, and I was hooked, greatly because I loved the irreverent humor Parker used to propel his plot lines, his phenomenal ear for dialogue, and because he simply wrote darn good characters! When the author died in 2010, it seemed like Spenser and the gang would disappear with him.

Thankfully, someone at Parker’s estate decided Ace Atkins could be a worthy successor, and they were right! Atkins brings everyone to vivid life, and the banter in the stories is as laugh-out-loud funny as anything Parker wrote himself. This is in stark contrast to other authors who have tackled beloved series, only to fall flat on their keisters. But ever since Atkins penned Robert B. Parker’s Lullaby and the subsequent titles that followed, he has been spot on in maintaining all the action, energy, heart and style Parker originally intended, and Slow Burn is no different.

Pick up a copy of Robert B. Parker’s Slow Burn today, and I guarantee that whether you’re a longtime Spenser fan or new to the series, you’ll fall in love with this story’s heart, crisp writing, and trademark humor. Or to borrow a term from an old friend, this book has a whole lot of moxie. Enjoy!


Robert B. Parker

Robert B. Parker
(Photo by John Earle)

Robert B. Parker was the author of 70 books, including the legendary Spenser detective series, the novels featuring police chief Jesse Stone, and the acclaimed Virgil Cole-Everett Hitch westerns, as well as the Sunny Randall novels.

Winner of the Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Award and long considered the dean of American crime fiction, he died in January 2010.

To find out more about Parker, visit his home on the Web and like him on Facebook.

Ace Atkins

Ace Atkins
(Photo by Joe Worthem)

Ace Atkins is the author of 19 books, including the forthcoming Quinn Colson novel, The Innocentsand was selected by the Robert B. Parker estate to continue the Spenser novels, most recently the New York Times bestsellers Robert B. Parker’s Kickback and Robert B. Parker’s Cheap Shot

One of the best crime writers working today, he has been nominated for every major award in crime fiction, including three Edgar Awards. A former newspaper reporter and SEC football player, Ace also writes essays and investigative pieces for several national magazines including Outside and Garden & Gun.

He makes his home in Oxford, Mississippi with his family, where he’s friend to many dogs and several bartenders. You can visit him at his home on the Web at, like him on Facebook and follow him on Twitter.

By Ace Atkins
320 pgs. G.P. Putnam’s Sons. $27.

About Jathan Fink
Jathan is a journalist, philanthropist, and entrepreneur. He is also a travel junkie, foodie and jazz aficionado. A California native, he resides in Texas.

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