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High Profile (A Jesse Stone Novel) Hardcover – February 6, 2007

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The murder of Walton Weeks, a Rush Limbaugh–like political commentator in sleepy Paradise, Mass., drives the action of bestseller Parker's competent whodunit, a sequel of sorts to Blue Screen (2006), which first paired two of the authors' non-Parker series characters—Jess Stone, an ex-LAPD detective trying to resurrect his career as Paradise's police chief, and PI Sunny Randall—with predictable romantic results. After a stalker sexually assaults Stone's ex-wife, Jenn, Stone asks Randall to serve as Jenn's bodyguard. Stone finds himself under atypical media and political scrutiny, especially after Weeks's pregnant mistress is also found dead in Paradise. Both Stone and Randall are still weighed down with significant emotional baggage from their exes, and it's Parker's exploration of their ambivalent relationship that is this book's strength. The plot, however, is much less developed than Jane Haddam's Hardscrabble Road (2006), which likewise featured the murder of a right-wing radio commentator. (Feb.)
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From Booklist

*Starred Review* Walton Weeks is a one-man media empire. He hosts a popular national radio gabfest, writes a newspaper column, and churns out best-selling books. At least he did until someone shot him and left him hanging from a tree in Paradise, Massachusetts. Shortly thereafter, the body of Weeks' pregnant lover is discovered in a nearby dumpster. Paradise police chief Jesse Stone fends off pressure from the governor and the state police in order to solve the high-profile case with the resources of his 12-person force. The potential suspects include two ex-wives, a widow, a bodyguard, and assorted staff members. Stone's problem is determining a motive. In a parallel plot, Stone attends to the needs of his ex-wife, Jenn, who alleges she was raped and claims she is being stalked by her attacker. Unable to cope with the murders and the rape, Stone calls on private investigator Sunny Randall--a sometime lover--to help with Jenn. Obsessive, sometimes unhealthy love is a recurring theme in Parker's work. In his Spenser novels, the protagonist and his lover have come through the tough times intact. Stone and Jenn have a strong but deleterious bond and are in the midst of a trying emotional journey to an unknown destination. This is Parker's most complex, ambitious novel in years. Spenser is always the toughest, coolest guy in the room. Jesse Stone sometimes seems like the toughest, coolest guy in the room, but he knows he's not. Great reading from an old hand who hasn't lost his touch. Wes Lukowsky
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Series: A Jesse Stone Novel (Book 6)
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Putnam Adult; First Edition edition (February 6, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399154043
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399154041
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.3 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (218 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #350,579 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Robert B. Parker (1932-2010) has long been acknowledged as the dean of American crime fiction. His novel featuring the wise-cracking, street-smart Boston private-eye Spenser earned him a devoted following and reams of critical acclaim, typified by R.W.B. Lewis' comment, "We are witnessing one of the great series in the history of the American detective story" (The New York Times Book Review). In June and October of 2005, Parker had national bestsellers with APPALOOSA and SCHOOL DAYS, and continued his winning streak in February of 2006 with his latest Jesse Stone novel, SEA CHANGE.

Born and raised in Massachusetts, Parker attended Colby College in Maine, served with the Army in Korea, and then completed a Ph.D. in English at Boston University. He married his wife Joan in 1956; they raised two sons, David and Daniel. Together the Parkers founded Pearl Productions, a Boston-based independent film company named after their short-haired pointer, Pearl, who has also been featured in many of Parker's novels.

Parker began writing his Spenser novels in 1971 while teaching at Boston's Northeastern University. Little did he suspect then that his witty, literate prose and psychological insights would make him keeper-of-the-flame of America's rich tradition of detective fiction. Parker's fictional Spenser inspired the ABC-TV series Spenser: For Hire. In February 2005, CBS-TV broadcast its highly-rated adaptation of the Jesse Stone novel Stone Cold, which featured Tom Selleck in the lead role as Parker's small-town police chief. The second CBS movie, Night Passage, also scored high ratings, and the third, Death in Paradise, aired on April 30, 2006.

Parker was named Grand Master of the 2002 Edgar Awards by the Mystery Writers of America, an honor shared with earlier masters such as Alfred Hitchcock and Ellery Queen.

Parker died on January 19, 2010, at the age of 77.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

47 of 53 people found the following review helpful By Lisa Shea HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 15, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Jesse Stone is an interesting character for those of us who have followed Robert B Parker since his first books. In some ways, Jesse's hard drinking of whiskey and bed-hopping is very similar to Spenser's early days. In other ways, Jesse's style is a duplicate of modern Spenser. You hear the exact same vocabulary describing situations, the type of characters around him is pretty much the same, his sensibilities, history and focus in life is very similar.

For a tiny town in coastal Massachusetts that has rarely seen murders until Jesse appeared, he appears to have the Curse of the Ages. Every year there are serial murders, bodies dropping dead left and right, in very bizarre circumstances. They've barely recovered from last year when they find both a man hung from a tree and a pregnant woman lying in a dumpster. Poor Jesse is just getting the basics set on these when his ex-wife Jenn calls - she's been raped, and she wants Jesse at her side 24x7.

In a typical Parker twist which seems a little farfetched, Jesse immediately thinks that the best way to manage his life is to call on his current girlfriend, Sunny, who he's in love with, to watch over and take care of his ex-wife. That sets us up for many scenes of Sunny telling Jenn about Jesse, Jenn telling Sunny about her feelings, Sunny telling Jesse what Jenn thinks about Jesse, and many other permutations. In the meantime, they do a little detecting, the State Police wave every once in a while, the Governor makes a few feeble threats, and they figure out who does what in which room with which weapon.

It's intriguing that my boyfriend feels Jesse is pretty much a Spenser clone.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By booksforabuck VINE VOICE on June 15, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Two bodies, one deliberately hung and one hidden in a trash dumpster, turn up in Paradise, MA police chief Jesse Stone's jurisdiction, both shot with the same gun. Jesse investigates, but it seems that every potential suspect has a perfect alibi. Could a deranged fan have killed the well-known and controversial radio talk show commentor? Or perhaps it was one of his current or past wives? Then again, what, exactly, did the dead man's bodyguard do--and why wasn't he doing it when his client was killed?

Stone's investigation is disturbed when his ex-wife forces herself into the scene with a story of rape and stalking. Busy with the double murder, Stone asks his semi-girlfriend, private detective Sunny Randall, to protect his ex-wife and to investigate her story.

Author Robert B. Parker delivers his trademark high-zing dialogue, coupled with his typically psychologically damaged characters. Stone is distracted by his ex-wife's problems, and continues to be obsessed with her, unable to complete the break he needs to move forward in his life. Jenn, the ex-wife makes things tougher for him by pushing herself at him while remaining completely unwilling to offer him the kind of commitment he demands.

With Parker, you can depend on an engaging, fast-paced read. His dialogue runs, with short phrases, single words, and clever zings let our eyes fly down the page, stopping occasionally to enjoy an especially cute bit of reparte. The mystery itself is interesting although relatively uncomplicated with little sense of danger. With Jesse more worried about his wife than about the two dead people, it's hard for us to care too much whether their killer is ever caught.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By L. J. Roberts VINE VOICE on June 12, 2007
Format: Hardcover
First Sentence: Each spring surprised Jesse.

A high-profile talk-show host is found hanged in the park. His assistant/girlfriend is found dead in a dumpster. As if Police Chief Jesse Stone doesn't have enough with two murders, his ex-wife, Jenn, calls to say she was raped and is being stalked. While Jesse investigates the murders, Sunny Randall, with whom he has been building a relationship, agrees to stay with Jenn and find the stalker.

I love Parker's writing but his stories are starting to bore me, which is a shame. I will always say he is the master of dialogue, even the laconic Jesse, whom Parker offsets with Suit, the young policeman and the best character in the story. The murders and their investigation is interesting. But I could do completely without the can't-live-with, can't-live-without relationships. It wasn't a great book, but there was still enough of Parker's classic style that I enjoyed it.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By J. Aragon VINE VOICE on March 11, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I read all the glowing reviews and couldn't help but wonder if I read the same book. I read this book in one sitting this evening and it was mediocre at best. I wasn't too keen w/ the last RBP book that I read either.

He seems to be veering down that James Patterson road- thin plot and not much other substance.

And, yet again, his so-called knowledge of women and women's issues had me shaking my head. Is Susan the only positive woman that he can have in his books. Well, Sunny Randall is a stronger character, as well.

I was really disappointed with this book and very glad that my father in law shared it--it was checked out from the library.

I miss the old RBP--with the better, witty writing. The last few books are really beach reads or at the very least get the book at the local library and save your money.
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