Cover image for Hugger mugger
Hugger mugger
Parker, Robert B., 1932-2010.
[Large print edition].
Publication Information:
Rockland, MA : Wheeler Pub., [2000]

Physical Description:
309 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


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Item Holds
X Adult Large Print - Floating collection Floating Collection - Large Print

On Order



Spenser is presented with a dangerous and multi-layered case: someone has been killing racehorses at stables across the south, and the Boston P.I. travels to Georgia to protect the 2-year-old destined to become the next Secretariat. When Spenser is approached by Walter Clive, president of Three Fillies Stables, to find out who is threatening his horse Hugger Mugger, he can hardly say no. He's been doing pro bono work for so long, his cupboards are just about bare.

Author Notes

Robert Brown Parker was born in Springfield, Massachusetts, on September 17, 1932. He received a B.A. from Colby College in 1954, served in the U.S. Army in Korea, and then returned to receive a M. A. in English literature from Boston University in 1957. He received a Ph.D. in English literature from Boston University in 1971.

Before becoming a full-time writer in 1979, he taught at Lowell State College, Bridgewater State College and Northwestern University.

In 1971, Parker published The Godwuff Manuscript, as homage to Raymond Chandler. The character he created, Spencer, became his own detective and was featured in more than 30 novels. His Spencer character has been featured in six TV movies and the television series Spencer: For Hire that starred Robert Urich and ran from 1985 to 1988.

He is also the author of the Jesse Stone series, which has been made into a series of television movies for CBS, and the Sunny Randall series. His novel Appaloosa (2005) was made into a 2008 movie directed by and starring Ed Harris. He has received numerous awards for his work including an Edgar Award for Best Novel in 1977 for The Promised Land, Grand Master Edgar Award for his collective oeuvre in 2002, and the Gumshoe Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008. He died of a heart attack on January 18, 2010 at the age of 77.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

The good news about the latest Spenser novel is that Parker takes his long-running series on the road, sending his hero to Georgia horse country, where the thoroughbred gentry offers a fine target for the wisecracking sleuth's finely honed sarcasm. The bad news is that Hawk, Spenser's erstwhile sidekick, is out of the picture this time. Spenser without Hawk is a necessarily diminished thing--the relationship between the white sleuth and his black best friend forms the very heart of the series, and Hawk himself remains one of the most enduring characters in mystery fiction--but there is enough going on here to keep most longtime fans from worrying about what they're missing. Spenser's assignment is to find whoever is killing racehorses at Three Fillies Stables and make sure the next victim isn't Hugger Mugger, the stable's prize nag. Walter Clive, owner of the stable, and his dysfunctional brood of boozy daughters and do-nothing sons-in-law--the stuff of 1950s melodrama--afford Spenser plenty of suspects and lots of opportunities to display his rapier wit. Late-night phone calls home to Boston give Susan Silverman, Spenser's lady love, a chance to swap one-liners with her fella, and the Hawk role is admirably played by a gay ex-cop who helps round up the bad guys. Don't expect this one to rank in your top 10 Spenser novels, but it's worth a couple hours of light entertainment. Still, it's time for Hawk to hurry home. --Bill Ott

Publisher's Weekly Review

Despite frequent appearances by Susan Silverman (longtime love of Boston PI Spenser) and the absence of Hawk (his enigmatic sidekick), the latest entry in Parker's estimable series is a worthy one. Missing is the sap that can stickie-up scenes between Spenser and Susan, and in Hawk's place strides a new sidekick, Tedy Sapp, who's gay and as tough as they come. Tedy's only a temp replacement, though, because the reason he's here and Hawk's not is that most of the action takes place in rural Georgia, where Tedy owns a gay bar. Spenser travels there on his own temp job--to find out who's been shooting horses at Three Fillies Stables, owned by Walter Clive, the most powerful man in the county, and to keep that someone from shooting Clive's prize thoroughbred, Hugger Mugger. Spenser roots through the highly dysfunctional family of Clive's three daughters and their husbands (one a pedophile, one a drunk), annoys Clive's security men and befriends both Tedy and the local sheriff, with whom the PI discusses doughnuts. When Clive is shot dead, Spenser is fired by the alpha daughter, only to be rehired by Clive's mistress, who believes there's more to the mayhem than horseplay. This novel offers more traditional mystery elements than many Spenser tales, although most readers will finger the prime villain way before Spenser does. The pacing is strong, the characters are fresh as dew and the prose is Parker-perfect. The Spenser-specific personal drama that drives the best of the tales is lacking, but overall, the story will fit Parker fans like an old shoe. (Apr.) FYI: Parker's most recent novel, Family Honor, will be filmed starring Helen Hunt. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

This time, Spenser heads South to thwart the killing of race horses. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.