A 1966 ad for The Busy Body

An advertisement for The Busy Body, from Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, April 1966. Courtesy of Jesse Willis at SFFaudio.

Added to the cover gallery: A Portuguese edition of The Hunter

Rififi (Portugal) 19??

Title translation: Hunter of Men

 

Levi Stahl on Parker and Donald Westlake on the White Rocket Podcast

Levi Stahl, as many of you know, is the man responsible for getting the Parker and Grofield novels back into print at the University of Chicago Press, as well as the brains behind the The Getaway Car, an anthology of Donald Westlake’s nonfiction writings. This past week, he appeared on the White Rocket Podcast […]

Nackles: A Christmas story by Donald Westlake (2017 repost)

Note: I believe this story to be in the public domain. If it is not, please let me know and I will remove it from the site.

Merry Christmas!

Nackles

By Donald Westlake (writing as Curt Clark)

Originally published in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, January 1964

Did God create men, or does Man create gods? I don’t know, and if it hadn’t been for my rotten brother-in-law, the question would never have come up. My late brother-in-law? Nackles knows.

It all depends, you see, like the chicken and the egg, on which came first. Did God exist before Man first thought of Him, or didn’t He? If not, if Man creates his gods, then it follows that Man must create the devils, too.

Nearly every god, you know, has his corresponding devil. Good and Evil. The polytheistic ancients, prolific in the creation (?) of gods and goddesses, always worked up nearly enough Evil ones to cancel out the Good, but not quite. The Greeks, those incredible supermen, combined Good and Evil in each of their gods. In Zoroaster, Ahura Mazda, being Good, is ranged forever against the Evil one, Ahriman. And we ourselves know God and Satan.

But of course it’s entirely possible I have nothing to worry about. It all depends on whether Santa is or is not a god. He certainly seems like a god. Consider: He is omniscient; he knows every action of every child, for good or evil. At least on Christmas Eve he is omnipresent, everywhere at once. He administers justice tempered with mercy. He is superhuman, or at least non-human, though conceived of as having a human shape. He is aided by a corps of assistants who do not have completely human shapes. He rewards Good and punishes Evil, And, most important, he is believed in utterly be several million people, most of them under the age of ten. Is there any qualification of godhood that Santa Claus does not possess?

Continue reading Nackles: A Christmas story by Donald Westlake (2017 repost)

Added to the cover gallery: A Portuguese edition of The Outfit

Rififi (Portugal) (19??)

Title translation: The Gang

I can’t read the text well enough to run it through Google Translate.

Added to the cover gallery: A Portuguese edition of The Damsel

Rififi (Brazil) (19??)

The artwork here makes this lighthearted romp look absolutely terrifying.

Title translation: The Girl

Cover text translation: “Grofield, an extraordinary adventurer, rescues a young woman in trouble in a race of life and death across Mexico.”

Added to the cover gallery: A Portuguese edition of The Rare Coin Score

Rififi (Brazil) (19??)

Title translation: The Rare Coin Hit

The cover text is a translation of the “Here’s Parker!” blurb from the Gold Medal first edition.

Added to the cover gallery: A Portuguese edition of The Black Ice Score

Rififi (Brazil) (19??)

Title translation: The Case of the Black Diamonds

The cover text is a translation of the “Here’s Parker!” blurb from the Gold Medal first edition.

A previous version of this post mistakenly referred to this edition as being from […]

Westlake Score: God Save the Mark

NB: A version of this post also appears at Existential Ennui.

Well, I reckon it’s about bleedin’ time I pulled me bleedin’ finger out and posted something at The Violent World of Parker, yeah? I mean, it’s not like I’ve exactly been prolific on Existential Ennui of late, but over here I haven’t posted […]

Open thread – video file help needed & John Wick edition

Not much news since the last of these–maybe stuff is out there, but I haven’t had a chance to look for it. A huge work project, football season, and lots of great concerts coming through Austin have kept me busy.

I need some help from someone who knows stuff about video files. I don’t know […]