Let's return to the books I bought at the recent London Paperback & Pulp Bookfair, the majority of which were decidedly Donald E. Westlake-shaped – this one being a case in point:
The cover artist is, of course, Harry Bennett, who illustrated the covers of all eight of the Parkers published by Pocket, from The Hunter (1962) to The Handle (1966). I waxed lyrical about Harry's artwork two years ago; that post also boasts comments from Harry's son, Tom, and daughter, Deborah, so it's well worth reading if you haven't already. Much as I admire Harry's work, however, of all his Parker covers, I think The Score is perhaps the one I was least taken with, at least when I wrote that post. The crew in the cab of the truck – Grofield, Mary, Salsa and Wycza, making their escape from the decimated Copper Canyon – looked too comedic to me, like they belonged in a Dortmunder story rather than a Parker tale. But viewed in the flesh – or, perhaps more accurately, in the pulp – the cover comes into its own. Bennett imbues each face with real character, and I love the little sgraffito touches around the painting – above the truck's numberplate and on the headlamps, and down its right edge.