My quest to collect as many of the Allison & Busby hardback editions of the Richard Stark 'Parker' novels as I can continues with this, the latest arrival:
The 1984 A&B edition of the second Parker novel, The Man with the Getaway Face. Which was actually the fourth Parker novel A&B published, following Slayground (originally Parker #14), Point Blank (Parker #1) and The Rare Coin Score (Parker #9). God help anyone trying to make chronological sense of the books at the time.
Anyway, my copy of The Man with the Getaway Face (which I also own in a Coronet edition as The Steel Hit) came from the fair isle of Orkney, of all places. I spotted it for sale online for a fiver. It's ex-library, but it's complete, and in very good condition. The (minor) library stamps inside state that it came from Orkney library itself, so it must have been sitting in the library up there on the (I presume) Orkney mainland for a good many years, lightly borrowed and read judging by the condition, then eventually bought by the Orkney bookshop and held in their stock until I chanced across it. It's unusual to be able to pinpoint the provenance of a book like that. Usually you have no idea as to how many hands a book has passed through. It's almost as if the book was being held by the Orkneys all this time, just waiting for my interest in the Parker novels to ignite. Strange.
The Man with the Getaway Face aside, my Parker hunt has been a little quiet recently. My birthday's coming up, so I've turned the quest over to anyone looking to buy me a present. So all being well, I should get a bumper haul next week!