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Home » Books » Fiction & Literature » Mystery & Detective » Women Sleuths

Family Honor

By Robert B. Parker

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Format: Paperback, 336 pages
Published In: United States, 01 November 2000
A blazingly original novel from the undisputed dean of American crime fiction, featuring a sharp, tough, sexy new P.I., Sunny Randall. Sunny Randallisa Boston P.I. and former cop, a college graduate, an aspiring painter, a divorcee, and the owner of a miniature bull terrier named Rosie. Hired by a wealthy family to locate their teenage daughter, Sunny is tested by the parents preconceived notion of what a detective should be. With the help of underworld contacts she tracks down the runaway Millicent, who has turned to prostitution, rescues her from a vicious pimp, and finds herself, at thirty-four, the unlikely custodian of a difficult teenager when the girl refuses to return to her family. But Millicent s problems are rooted in much larger crimes than running away, and Sunny, now playing the role of bodyguard, is caught in a shooting war with some very serious mobsters. She turns for help to her ex-husband, Richie, himself the son of a mob family, and to her dearest friend, Spike, a flamboyant and dangerous gay man. Heading this unlikely alliance, Sunny must solve at least one murder, resolve a criminal conspiracy that reaches to the top of state government, and bring Millicent back into functional young womanhood."

About the Author

Robert B. Parker was the author of more than fifty books. He died in January 2010.


Private investigator Sunny Randall has a full array of family and friends who help her in her new business. Her complex life becomes even more so when she locates the runaway teenager whom she has been hired to find, only to decide that the young girl's home is not a healthy place; so Sunny keeps her while she investigates her clients. Her inquiries reveal some seemingly unrelated murders, and soon she finds herself killing a man to protect young Millicent. Andrea Thompson is easy to listen to; her husky voice is believably one of a self-described "cute" thirty-something blond who can get tough when necessary. Men, too, are portrayed with panache, whether it be a pimp or Sunny's attractive and devoted ex-husband. Most listeners will be drawn into the story immediately. Recommended for popular collections.--Juleigh Muirhead Clark, John D. Rockefeller Jr. Lib., Williamsburg, VA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.

After 33 novelsÄincluding more than two dozen Spenser mysteriesÄbackboned by heros concerned with distinctly male codes of behavior, Parker presents his first female protagonist. She's Sunny Randall, and she's a keeper. In some ways, Sunny is a female Spenser. Like him, she's a former cop, now a Boston PI, quick with a pistol and a quip. She teams with an odd sidekick, Spike, as Spenser teams with Hawk, and she has a significant other, an ex-husband to Spenser's Susan. But Sunny is female, and as she explains in this wonderfully involving and moving novel, that means that she can't rely on the compass of "Be a man" to orient toward life. How to live correctly is this novel's theme, as it is in the best Spenser novels, and to explore that theme Parker borrows situations from those novels. Sunny is hired by a powerful family to find their runaway daughter, Millicent, who, it transpires, is hooking and needs rescuingÄlike the girl in Taming a Sea-Horse. Once saved from the streets, Sunny trains Millicent in responsible adult waysÄcooking, exerciseÄas Spenser trained Paul in Early Autumn. But it's only a minor knock that Parker uses here elements honed in 30 years of writing, for he uses them with consummate skill. Millicent, it happens, witnessed a conspiracy to murder arising from her cold, ambitious parentsÄher father aims to be governorÄand the Italian mobsters who control them. The mobsters now want her dead, and Sunny, too, if need be. Sunny's fight to save Millicent and herself moves through a wide swath of Boston and its denizens, all etched in Parker's lean and exquisitely cadenced prose. The high suspense is equaled by the emotional power of Sunny's bonding with the damaged girl. A bravura performance, this novel launches what promises to be a series for the ages. BOMC main selection; film rights to Helen Hunt. (Sept.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

-Sunny Randall, Parker's new detective, bears little resemblance to Spenser, his more famous creation. She is petite, attractive, educated, and artistic, whereas he is burly, gruff, and blunt. They do, however, share a penchant for zinging one-liners and shrewd leaps of deduction. Sunny, the ex-wife of the noninvolved son and nephew of the remnants of the Boston Mafia, wants to strike out on her own. The fact that she still loves Richie and hesitates to form new alliances somewhat cramps her style, but does aid her detecting. With an endearing bull terrier named Rosie; a gourmet cook, body-builder sidekick who happens to be gay; and a girlfriend who is a psychiatric social worker, Sunny has as many compatriots as Spenser, and puts them to equally good use. She is hired by wealthy politician Brock Patton to find his runaway daughter. This task is quickly accomplished with the help of Richie's family; what is not so easily discovered is why someone tries to kill Millicent-and Sunny-or why the girl's parents are so reticent and Millicent so fearful. While not much of a mystery, this is an engrossing, quick read and Millicent is a quirky, captivating adolescent. Parker has come up with another winning team.-Susan H. Woodcock, Chantilly Regional Library, VA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.

EAN: 9780425177068
ISBN: 0425177068
Publisher: Berkley Publishing Group
Dimensions: 17.2 x 10.7 x 2.6 centimetres (0.41 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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1 review(s)
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Tessa on
Affable and easy going Robert B Parker brings his laid back cool to a new series featuring a feisty female detective called Sunny who discovers that her first case is not nearly as simple as it first appeared. Lightweight but appealingly unpretentious and insanely readable in fast paced eccentric style.

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