It is 1947 when Joseph Burke, ex-Marine, ex-husband, ex-somebody–is hired as a bodyguard to protect Lauren Roach, 25 and spoiled rotten. The unlikely duo becomes entangled with Burke’s boyhood hero, color-barrier breaking baseball player Jackie Robinson, in a story that is both thrilling and engaging. It is in the historical character Jackie Robinson that Mr. Parker finds inspiration and Joseph Burke may find his redemption.
This is a work of fiction about a real man. Most of what I’ve written I’ve made up. I have, however, attempted to render Jackie Robinson accurately. As he was, or as I imagined him to be, in 1947, when I was turning 15, and he was changing the world. The rest is altogether fiction. It may be more Burke’s story then Jackie’s story. But, without Jackie, Burke would have had no story. And neither would I. Robert B Parker.
"This should be required reading for all aspiring storytellers....A masterful recreation of a turbulent era that's not only a great and gripping crime novel but also one of the most evocative baseball novels ever written." (Publishers Weekly)
"Deeply felt and intimately told....Fusing this chapter of sports history with a hard-boiled gangster plot and haunting recollections of his own Boston boyhood, Parker fashions a hugely entertaining fiction..." (The New York Times Book Review)
"A grand-slam combination of adventure, mystery, and sports, and an evocative but unsentimental memoir." (Forbes)
"If you only read his Spenser novels, it's easy to forget how versatile Parker can be. This story...reminded me." (Stephen King, Entertainment Weekly)
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The Narrator Makes the Difference
engrossing tale of a different era in sports
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