Blue-Eyed Devil (Virgil Cole \u0026 Everett Hitch, #4) By Robert B. Parker

    The extraordinary new Western from the New York Times- bestselling author, featuring itinerant lawmen Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch.
    Law enforcement in Appaloosa had once been Virgil Cole and me. Now there was a chief of police and twelve policemen. Our third day back in town, the chief invited us to the office for a talk.
    The new chief is Amos Callico: a tall, fat man in a derby hat, wearing a star on his vest and a big pearl-handled Colt inside his coat. An ambitious man with his eye on the governorship-and perhaps the presidency-he wants Cole and Hitch on his side. But they can't be bought, which upsets him mightily.
    When Callico begins shaking down local merchants for protection money, those who don't want to play along seek the help of Cole and Hitch. But the guns for hire are thorns in the side of the power-hungry chief. When they are forced to fire on the trigger-happy son of a politically connected landowner, Callico sees his dream begin to crumble. There will be a showdown-but who'll be left standing? Blue-Eyed Devil (Virgil Cole \u0026 Everett Hitch, #4)

    Howdy....spits into spittoon y'all ready fer another good action yarn based on the mythology of the American west. This here...well, these here books are built purty heavily on the mythology of the gunfighter. The stranger who rides in...puts everything a'right with his six-gun...then rides away...usually into the sunset.

    Virgil Cole is that character (as is Everett Hitch). These are really well written westerns with filled out characters and actually well thought out plots. I like them.

    The actual model for the walk-down shootout was a gunfight in which Bill (James Butler) Hickock participated. He lost a poker game and gave the other player his watch as security, but warned him that if he carried it (thus bragging he'd beaten Hickock) he'd kill him. The next morning the two men met in the street, walked toward each other, pulled and fired. Hickock won.

    Davis Tutt died.

    There are actually few recorded instances of actual one on one shootout gunfights. Many of the ones we do know about involved two men firing multiple shots and not hitting each other. Still the old west walk-down has become the picture we have of the western hero. I dare say many who read this will still remember the opening of the long running dramatic TV series Gunsmoke as Marshal Matt Dillon stands for a shootout at the opening of the show.

    I know as a kid I did it many, many times with my cap gun.

    So Virgil and Everett are classic gun fighters. They have their own code and won't violate it. The story continues to grow here as they sort of close the circle going back to the town where the story with Allie began. The town of Appaloosa.

    Add in a feud over who's going to run the town, some renegade Indians (yes I know native Americans, but this is a western and they were called Indians then....there's also another word that shows up here not as a slur but because it was used then). The action boils over into violence here (again) as both sides gather gun-hands for the final showdown. Some characters we've seen before show up here and as noted action ensues.

    I like these...I guess you got that. Recommended, enjoy. 0399156488 Suppose I am a little sad. This was the last in the series before Robert Parker died. While the conversations between Virgil and Everette are classic. There was always enough action to read these books like I was eating chocolate. It never lasts long enough. The Blue-eyed devils are a reference to white persons as classified by the Apache. I am not sure if I want to read the series further because another author has stepped in. 0399156488 This is the last of the series written by Parker. The series continues, but with another author as Parker died. I have no urge to continue with this series under another author. The books were fun and easy to read. I am looking forward to reading his Spencer series. 0399156488 I am so disappointed...that the series has ended! I started reading this on a whim, as I don't even like westerns a little bit. However I got several Parker rec's and somehow ended up bringing this series home...and loved it. I found out during this time that Parker had died as well, I wished I had discovered him sooner.

    Hitch & Cole return to the begining by heading back to Appaloossa. Along the way they protect some wronged people and of course make some powerful enimies along the way. I enjoyed Teagarden and the return of Pony, cato & Rose, and the sense of honor that might go overlooked by their talents. Once again the plot was nothing new, but the story is a fast paced ride through the old west. Not much time spent describing scenery or other details that I might normally desire in a novel. I didn't really miss it, and that lended to the more action paced book that ensued.

    I am so upset that this series is done...I am not sure if I will ever find another western that appeals to me, that alone will make this book stand out in my mind. 0399156488 This is not a novel, though it pretends to be. Books in most novel series were once fairly independent from each other. Readers could join the series anywhere. Either the past did not matter, or if it did, the author would tell readers what they needed to know to understand the present. This seems to have changed.

    In this book, perhaps best described as the later chapters of a serial despite the words “a novel,” on the cover, we meet a number of established characters. Parker does not bother to reestablish some of them for new readers. If you have read the previous books and remember the backstories of these characters, you will do fine with this book. If not, quite frankly, a number of the characters who show-up to lend a hand then drift away only to show-up later to lend the other hand then drift away will seem like cheating plot devices. This book is a bit like turning on a episode of, say, the TV series 24 around episode 18 character-wise, yet beginning with a whole new story.

    That is slightly a complaint, but mostly a meditation and also a context for evaluating the story which begins here with episode 18. It is rather good. A bit episodic, it is true. The book does not so much have a begging, middle and an end as it does a resumption, three middles, and an end, but the middles and the end are fairly satisfying. The writing is brisk, compellingly readable, and Parker’s greatest gift is his dialog. He still should eliminate the last sentence of most chapters in most of his books, but the last sentences here are not as annoying as they are in his Spenser books.

    Two extra notes: Except in some of his Spenser books, Parker constant theme is a man involved with the wrong woman or a woman involved with the wrong man. That is true in this book with a couple of women. There is a brief reference to Lady Macbeth in this one. The two notes are not unrelated. 0399156488

    READ & DOWNLOAD Blue-Eyed Devil (Virgil Cole \u0026 Everett Hitch, #4)

    A perfectly fine finish to Parker's portion of his Cole & Hitch western series.

    This one finds the pair back in Appaloosa working as hired hands for a saloon that doesn't get the protection it needs from the local sheriff. This sheriff has aspirations well beyond this podunk town and there'll be trouble for anyone that gets in his way. Cole and Hitch get in his way.

    I really wish Parker hadn't knocked off in the middle of this series or at least was around longer in order to write more. I mean, these aren't the best books ever written, but they're quick, enjoyable reads. This one included. 0399156488 I'm a big fan of Robert B. Parker's early Virgil & Everett westerns (APPALOOSA,RESOLUTION, etc.) but the latest, BLUE EYED DEVIL, is Parker at his worst. For starters, it's hardly a book at all, more like a long short story fattened up with large fonts, three-page chapters, and lots of white space.

    Professional gun hands Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch return to Appaloosa, the setting for the first (and best) book in the series and spend most of their time sitting on one porch or another sipping whiskey and talking about how smart, skilled, capable, and all around marvelous they are. Occasionally, they get up and shoot someone. The plotting is episodic, improvised, and often inept. For example, at one point, their old friend Pony Flores, a inscrutable and wise half-breed Indian, shows up on the run from the law with his silent brother but isn't worried about being caught because, like Virgil and Everett, he's so damn good.

    Anybody on your trail? Virgil said.

    Pony shook his head.

    Only man can track Pony Flores, he said, is me.

    Good, Virgil said.

    But a few pages later, the law shows up looking for him anyway. Virgil quizzes the trackers.

    What makes you think he's here? Virgil said.

    Folks in Van Buren spotted them, couple weeks back, heading south. This is the next town.

    Virgil nodded.

    So Pony's brilliant, untrackable method for eluding pursuers is to go in a straight line from one town to the next, making sure that he's seen. But Virgil and Everett continue to regard Pony as a master tracker and eluder anyway.
    An editor might have caught that bit of insipidness and, perhaps, also the half-dozen repetitions of the phrase when the balloon goes up throughout the book, but it's been a while since anybody has bothered editing Parker...and that disinterest and laziness continues even after his death.

    Parker relies on all of his tropes in this book, repeating banter that I swear I've read in all of his books and lifting situations whole from previous entries in the series (for instance, once again Everett finds a sweet, warm-hearted, still beautiful hooker willing to have sex with him for free because she gets so hot hearing him talk about how competent and marvelous he and Virgil are)

    Parker has succeeded in killing this series with his own disinterest the same way he did with the Jesse Stone books. Both series started out great and then he seemingly gave up making any effort, letting them become thinly-written and loosely conceived parodies of themselves. It's a sad thing to see and even more painful to read. At least it's over fast. I doubt BLUE EYED DEVIL is even 30,000 words.

    I truly hope that the two upcoming SPENSER novels that Parker finished before his death are a return to form and not, as I fear, a sad coda to a once-great writer's career. 0399156488 Hardback. Used library copy in more or less perfect condition.

    Terse, brutal, pared to the bone. Raw and gutsy and painful.

    I LOVE this author's writing. 0399156488 This is a western. In an alternate universe, it would be called 'Historical Action Thriller.' Parker was a champ at this stuff, both contemporary detective stories and westerns. Here, all the classic western action: fast guns, saloon girls, renegade Indians, corrupt officials, greedy ranchers. Parker's signature style is super-heavy on dialogue; there's almost no narrative. But there's enough. Virgil Cole is basically the Clint Eastwood character from any of the spaghetti westerns of the late 60s: taciturn, deadly, fearless, and devoted to some weird code that requires him to risk his life and end others' if it seems right. 0399156488 Robert B. Parker writes like the kid who constantly shows up at art class without any of his own supplies – he relies on you to supply the pigments and pencils for color and shading. And that’s a good thing. In his sparse, economical way of writing, Parker more releases a story than tells it. It is left to our imaginations to dress and refine characters and settings. While this could lead to discontinuities and jarring transformations in the hands of a lesser writer, Parker’s narrative in “Blue-Eyed Devil” so embodies the classic Old West rhythms that we smell the saddle leather, hear the spin of spurs off the warping floorboards of the dry goods store and feel the worn-smooth cross bar of the hitching post long before we even enter town.

    Robert B. Parker died last January, but it took nearly a year for his publishers to catch up with his prolific output. Perhaps not as wrenching as his last Spenser (“Painted Ladies”) published and reviewed here this past summer, saying good-bye to his Cole and Hitch stories, is just as bittersweet. The four-story arc centers on the recurring themes of greed and power versus frontier justice and law; owners of the land versus owners of the dream. This is the only installment in the series not named after a town -- Appaloosa, Resolution, Brimstone -- though it contains the strongest nod to the importance of place. While all four deal with the right of the commons versus the power of elite domination, the Blue-Eyed Devil moves from the search for where to settle to the understanding that any place -- dusty cow-town or ramshackle rail head or big city like New Orleans -- is what you make it. The question is not where but what. Here we see that the Blue-Eyed Devil is our own nature and the penchant we have for imposing our own evil where ever we are. To find a place truly worth living requires us to find our nature truly worth being.

    Parker gives our travels with Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch better closure than the last Spenser on two counts. First, the story seems naturally to have run its course, whereas you feel that the last Spenser simply ended mid-sentence. And, second, with the story in many ways coming full circle – we see Kato & Rose, Pony Flores and Chauncey Teagarden join forces again – we have a sense that the author was at peace with his end and perhaps pleased that he left us with enough of our own paints for our own future unguided travels.
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    Blue-Eyed