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Monday, July 18, 2011

Sea Change by Robert B. Parker

The Good News: It's a Robert B. Parker Book...

The Bad News: It's not a particularly good one.

However, Robert B. Parker's books remind me of those bumper stickers that say 'A Bad Day Fishing is Better Than a Good Day at Work.'

A bad Jesse Stone book is still a fun read.

In Sea Change, Stone's police department is investigating a woman's body found floating in the harbor. Along the way, Stone discovers lots of perversion, money, yachts and messed-up rich kids. Or, as his psychologist puts it, Stone is working on a case 'in which control and loveless sexual objectification is rampant.'

Stone comments that pornography is fun for about the first 10 seconds and then it loses most of its appeal for him (he has to wade through hours of personal videotapes of the stuff in the search for victims and suspects) because it gets so repetitive. Unfortunately, this book has the same problem. Lots of sex parties and videotape. Lots of rich boys, easy girls and videotape. The problem is that the story just gets stuck in a rut for about a hundred pages or so. The dialogue is wonderful. The observations are witty. At one point, though, I realized that I was just reading for the witty dialogue and the observations - not for the plot.

Too bad. The last Jesse Stone novel I read was one of the best novels Parker had written, in my opinion. This one goes in the lower half of that long, long list of books.

As has been the case for several books now, the book seems quite hefty when you pick it up. However, open it up and it reminds me of when a college student tries to pad the length of his paper by enlarging the margins and the font size. This book features large print, extra thick paper, lots of space between each line and full one inch margins. Each chapter also starts about 2/3 of the way down the page and there are 62 chapters, so that's a good way to stretch it out an extra 30 pages or so. Not that it makes any difference, but I wonder why they've done this. It weighs in at 296 pages and could have easily have been printed in a 200 page format without straining the eyes. This little one-day read is wider than most textbooks! This has to be more expensive, it adds to shipping costs and makes it harder for the stores to stock multiple copies...

I rate this book 3 stars out of 5.

This book can be found on Amazon.com here: Sea Change (Jesse Stone Novels)

Reviewed on June 22, 2006.

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