The book world was blasted with major loss when Robert B. Parker, passed away on Monday, Jan. 19th, at age 77. Parker transcended genres with his superior writing, but it was his Jesse Stone and Spenser series, that left a distinct mark on the crime novels, in the same way Raymond Chandler or Mickey Spillane had in the past.
With over 60 books to his credit, Parker earned the title “The Dean of Crime Fiction.” He loved to write, and touched countless people with his characters, and the work he did with Chandler's classic character Phillip Marlowe. New York Times Best Selling Author, Laurell K. Hamilton, credits Parker's detective character Spenser as Anita Blake's literary father. It seemed as if nothing short of death would stop this legend from writing. His final moments were spent sitting at his desk, working on his next novel.
According to the Los Angeles Times; “He didn't concern himself with looking back. Instead, he wrote, and in the process irrevocably altered American detective fiction, forging a link between classic depictions and more contemporary approaches to the form.”
On a personal note: I was first exposed to Robert B. Parker, after watching Tom Selleck's portrayal of Jesse Stone in the film adaption to Night Passage. From there I picked up every Jesse Stone movie and novel I could get my hands on. Parker was a strong influence on my currently unpublished crime fiction.