And so my quest to collect all of Donald 'Richard Stark' Westlake's Parker novels comes to a close, with the arrival of this:
A 2007 UK hardback first edition of the penultimate Parker novel, Ask the Parrot, published by Quercus. So I now have every single one of the twenty-four Parker novels.
Except... I'm not quite done yet. For one thing, another of my cheapo Amazon punts has gone slightly astray: this copy of Ask the Parrot has turned out to be ex-library, which the seller didn't mention. It's also got the first page – or rather front endpaper, where libraries usually glue their issuing leafs – torn out. Fucktastic. I've just found another cheapo copy, which hopefully this time won't be ex-library. Harumph.
And there's also the matter of the editions I have of the Parker novels. I have multiple editions of some of them, but I'm still missing a few key hardbacks I'd like to own, mostly Allison & Busby ones: The Jugger (even though I've already got an Allison & Busby paperback of it...), The Rare Coin Score (er, despite already having three Coronet paperback editions...), The Black Ice Score (again, already got an A&B paperback of this one, but y'know...)... And then there's the thorny problem of Deadly Edge, which I have in a 1990 A&B paperback, but which I'm not sure was issued in hardback in the UK (it might have been, in 1992, but I can't say for definite), so I'd have to get a first edition US hardback, and those are a bit pricey. (I almost got me hands on one of these on eBay recently, but the internet crashed on me and I lost out. Ooh, you should've heard me swear that day.)
And I'm still debating whether to pick up the two Stark-penned Alan Grofield novels I'm missing, The Dame and The Blackbird. Sigh. It never ends, does it?