Another sad death to report is that of Robert B. Parker, creator of the Boston private detective Spenser (whose first name was never given, but who said that his last name was spelled with an ’s’, “like the poet.”) It’s appropriate to pay tribute to Parker on this blog, both because Frye liked reading detective stories, and because Parker had a PhD in English from Northeastern. Several of his novels feature academic satire. He died at his desk, a writer to the last moment.
Steven Axelrod’s tribute at Salon.com (”How the crime novelist taught me to stand up for myself and taught my son about the carnal pleasures of reading”) can be found here. Axelrod’s piece is noteworthy for the way it suggests the liberating possibilities inherent in popular fiction.