Spenser #13: Taming a Sea Horse by Robert ParkerMystery/Thriller
Spenser is back! It's so nice to see him return to his pre-Susan-made-me-lose-my-mind days. The last few books in the series were really painful for me to read. I really like to see Spenser as an impenetrable fortress of good and watching him mire about in self-pity was awkward, especially since I so dislike Susan, the cause of his morose pity party.
In this installment, Spenser is called back to the home of his favorite prostitute madam to find a missing girl. However, the more Spenser digs, the more he discovers that the girl doesn't want to come back...because she's in love. Unfortunately, she's in love with a piece of garbage so Spenser had to become her moral compass and get her back on track, killing a few people and scaring even more along the way. Hawk, another favorite character, is back and the two are such a fun duo to read about. Susan is also back, but she does little more than lay around in Spenser's bed and dole out pity psycho babble so I can stomach her presence.
I did find this story to be a bit darker than some of the previous reads. The lessons about love and true love and betrayal seem bitter and, even though Spenser saves the day, the ending left a bad taste in my mouth. Still, he's one of my favorite detectives so I'm going to stick with him and hope he gets his unconcerned groove back soon.