Donald Westlake

Pseudonyms include Alan Marshal, Edwin West, Edwina West, Edwin Wood, Richard Stark, Tucker Coe, Timothy J. Culver, Samuel Holt, Curt Clark, J. Morgan Cunningham, Ben Christopher, Grace Salacious

Simply the best.

One of the most accomplished crime writers ever, and certainly one of the funniest in the hard-boiled school, Donald Edwin Edward Westlake was born in Brooklyn in 1933, and rambled around much of New York state, growing up, or at least that’s his story. He was raised in Yonkers and Albany, and attended Champlain College in Plattsburgh (Plattsburgh? That’s uncomfortably close to Montreal!), Troy and Binghamton, and finally Manhattan.

“None to much effect,” he hastens to assure us. He served a few years in the U.S. Air Force (where he learned “a little German”). He began his writing career in the mid-fifties, selling short stories to various magazines and second-tier mystery digests, honing his skills and moving on up the food chain, and his first novel (at least under his own name), The Mercenaries, appeared in 1960. It was but the first of over a hundred novels and non-fictionbooks published either under his own name or one of a rash of pseudonyms in a long and successful career.

Westlake was one prolific and talented guy, probably best known–at least under his own name–for his caper novels, which essentially come in two flavours: humourous and hard as hell. In the lighter vein, he wrote the John Dortmunder series, about a brilliant, but hilariously unlucky master criminal. The first Dortmunder caper, The Hot Rock, appeared in 1970.

But Westlake also enjoyed a large and devoted following for his decidedly darker books about professional criminal Parker, written under the pen name of Richard Stark. And Stark is the perfect pen name for the author of these books–they’re stark, all right, and nasty, bleak and violent. They’re also some of the absolutely best heist novels ever written. Westlake/Stark fans were very happy when Parker made his triumpant return, after a 23-year hiatus, with the appriately-titled Comeback in 1997. Westlake has promised more.

But that’s not all!

As Tucker Coe, Westlake has written a series about guilt-ridden private eye, Mitch Tobin, and under his own name he wrote Killing Time, a stand-alone about small town P.I. Tim Smith.

But that’s not all!

He’s written about New york cop Abe Levine and cop turned actor Sam Holt (under the pen name of Sam Holt). And he’s written dozens of stand-alones: capers, thrillers, historicals, science fiction and even a lesbian romance or two. Under J. Morgan Cunningham, he’s written the Arthur Hailey spoof, Comfort Station, which boasts the memorable blurb “I wish I had written this book,” attributed to one Donald E. Westlake.

As Thomas J. Culver, he wrote a political novel political novel, and under the names of Alan Marshall and Edwin West, he penned several soft-core books in the fifties and early sixties, much like his long-time poker buddy and fellow former lesbian Lawrence Block. As well, he’s written several more stand-alone caper novels, mysteries and even a little science fiction. One of my favourites is a thriller, Kahawa (1982), set in Idi Amin’s Uganda, and revolving around a plot to hijack a coffee train. A true renaissance man!

But that’s not all!

He also found the time to script a few films and television scripts, most notably The Grifters (1990), based on the novel by Jim Thompson. He’s also written a few screenplays based on his own works, and he’s written pilots for television series, including Supertrain and The Father Dowling Mysteries.

Well, nobody’s perfect…

Still, balancing out the scales are several fine films which have been made based on his works.

Westlake was deservedly named a Mystery Writers of America Grand Master in 1993, and in his later years he lived with his wife, the writer Abby Adams, out in the New York State boonies, next to a goat farm.



  • “The Arrest” (first published story?)
  • “Or Give Me Death” (November 1954, Universe)
  • “The Blonde Lieutenant” (July 1957, Rogue)
  • “The Arrest” (January 1958, Manhunt)
  • “Fluorocarbons Are Here to Stay!” (March 1958, Science Fiction Stories)
  • “Everybody Killed Sylvia” (May 1958, Mystery Digest)
  • “Matin’ Place” (August 1958, Escapade; by Grace Salacious)
  • “The Devil’s Printer” (September 1958, Mystery Digest)
  • “Sinner or Saint” (December 1958, Mystery Digest)
  • “Decoy for Murder” (March 1959, Mystery Digest)
  • “Down-Payment for Murder” (April 1959, Mystery Digest; aka “Death for Sale”)
  • “And Then He Went Away” (June 1959, Future)
  • “Journey to Death” (June 1959, Mystery Digest)
  • “One on a Desert Island” (June 1959, AHMM; aka “One Man on a Desert Island”)
  • “The Ledge Bit” (September 1959, Mystery Digest; as by Richard Stark)
  • “Knife Fighter” (November 1959, Guilty Detective Story)
  • “The Best-Friend Murder” (December 1959, AHMM; Abe Levine; aka “Intellectual Motivation”)
  • “The Last Ghost” (November-December 1959, Mystery Digest, as by Richard Stark)
  • “An Empty Threat” (February 1960, Manhunt)
  • “Travellers Far And Wee” (May 1960, Science Fiction)
  • “Friday Night” (Jume 1960, Tightrope)
  • “You Put on Some Weight” (June 1960, Guilty Magazine; aka “Fresh Out of Prison”)
  • “Elephant Blues” (July 1960, 77 Sunset Strip Magazine; as by Ben Christopher)
  • “Anatomy of an Anatomy” (September 1960, AHMM)
  • “The Curious Facts Preceding My Execution” (September 1960, AHMM; as by Richard Stark)
  • “Cat Killers (September 1960, Shock Magazine)
  • “Come Back, Come Back” (October 1960, AHMM; Abe Levine; aka “Man On A Ledge”)
  • “Good Night! Good Night!” (December 1960, AHMM)
  • “Man of Action” (December 1960, Analog SF)
  • “Just a Little Impractical Joke” (March 1961, AHMM; as by Richard Stark)
  • “The Risk Profession” (March 1961, Amazing Science Fiction; Ged Stanton; aka “Murder In Outer Space”)
  • “Never Shake a Family Tree” (March 1961, AHMM, also 2002, A Century of Noir)
  • “They Also Serve” (September 1961, Analog SF)
  • “Call Him Nemesis” (September 1961, World of If)
  • “The Spy in the Elevator” (October 1961, Galaxy)
  • “The Feel of the Trigger” (October 1961, AHMM; Abe Levine)
  • “Meteor Strike!” (November 1961, Amazing Stories)
  • “A Time to Die” (January 1962, The Saint Mystery Magazine)
  • “A Toast to the Damned” (May 1962, Off Beat Detective Stories)
  • “Look Before You Leap” (May 1962, Analog SF)
  • “Lock Your Door ” (August 1962, AHMM)
  • “The Earthman’s Burden” (October 1962, Galaxy)
  • “The Sound of Murder” (December 1962, AHMM; Abe Levine)
  • “The Question” (March 1963, F&SF; with L.M. Janifer)
  • “Nackles” (January 1964, F&SF; by Curt Clark)
  • “Just the Lady We’re Looking For” (September 1964, EQMM)
  • “The Death of a Bum” (June 1965, Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine; Abe Levine)
  • “The Letter” (August 1965, Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine)
  • “Stage Fright” (September 1965, The Saint Mystery Magazine)
  • “The Method” (October 1965, AHMM)
  • “Paid in Full” (November 1965, Swank)
  • “The Spoils System” (December 1965, AHMM)
  • “Just One of Those Days” (January 6, 1966, This Week)
  • “The Mother of Invention Is Worth a Pound of Cure” (February 1966, Dapper; aka “The Mother of Invention”)
  • “Teamwork” (February 1966, Shell Scott Mystery Magazine)
  • “The Perils of the Sky Rangers” (May 1966, Cavalier; with Dave Foley, as P.N. Castor)
  • “The Rape of Rodney Royal” (June 1966, Dapper; as by Edwin West)
  • “Domestic Intrigue” (July 1966, The Saint)
  • “Devilishly” (August 1966, Signature)
  • “Cool O’Toole” (September 1966, AHMM)
  • “The Sincerest Form of Flattery” (October 1966, AHMM)
  • “The Sweetest Man in the World” (March 1967, EQMM)
  • “Sniff” (May 1967, The Saint Detective Magazine)
  • “It” (September 1968, Playboy)
  • “All Men Are Bea…” (December 1968, Argosy)
  • “Devilishly” (1968, The Curious Facts Preceding My Execution)
  • “No Story” (1968, The Curious Facts Preceding My Execution)
  • “Murder in Outer Space” (1968, The Curious Facts Preceding My Execution)
  • “You Put on Some Weight” (1968, The Curious Facts Preceding My Execution)
  • “The Winner” (1970, Nova 1)
  • “The Ultimate Caper: The Purloined Letter” (May 11, 1975, The New York Times)
  • “This Is Death” (1977, The Thirteenth Ghost Book; aka “In at the Death”)
  • “Ordo” (1977, Enough!; 2001, Pulp Masters)
  • “A Travesty” (1977, Enough!)
  • “This is Death” (November 1978, EQMM)
  • “The Girl of My Dreams” (1978, The Midnight Ghost Book; also April 1979, EQMM)
  • “The Mulligan Stew” (January 1979, EQMM)
  • “Ask a Silly Question” (1981, Playboy; Dortmunder)
  • “Interstellar Pigeon” (May 1982, Playboy)
  • “Re Porter” (July 1982, EQMM)
  • “Dream a Dream” (August 1982, Cosmopolitan)
  • “Heaven Help Us ” (July 1983, Playboy)
  • “Don’t You Know There’s a War On?” (December 1983, Playboy)
  • “The World’s a Stage” (July 1984, Playboy)
  • “Hydra” (March 1984, F&SF)
  • “After I’m Gone” (June 1984, EQMM; Abe Levine)
  • “A Good Story” (October 1984, Playboy)
  • “Breathe Deep” (July 1985, Playboy)
  • “Hitch Your Spaceship to a Star” (December 1985, Playboy)
  • “Horse Laugh” ( June 1986, Playboy; Dortmunder)
  • “Here’s Looking At You” (May 1989, Playboy)
  • “Too Many Crooks” (August 1989, Playboy; Dortmunder)
  • “The Dortmunder Workout, or Criminal Exercise” (April 29, 1990, The New York Times Magazine; Dortmunder)
  • “A Midsummer Daydream” (May 1990, Playboy; Dortmunder)
  • “Love in the Lean Years” (February 1992, Playboy)
  • “Party Animal” (December 1992, Playboy; Dortmunder)
  • “Last-Minute Shopping: A Tinsel Tale of Love and Larceny” (December 5, 1993, The New York Times Book Review)
  • “Give Till It Hurts” (1993, The Mysterious Bookshop; Dortmunder)
  • “Jumble Sale” (Summer 1994, The Armchair Detective; Dortmunder)
  • “The Burglar and the Whatsit” (December 1996, Playboy)
  • “Skeeks” (1995, Playboy)
  • “Take It Away” (Summer/Fall 1997, MHCMM, also 1997, The Plot Thickens)
  • “Now What?” (December 1999, Playboy; Dortmunder)
  • “Art & Craft” (August 2000, Playboy; Dortmunder)
  • “Spectacles” (May 2001, Playboy; Dortmunder)
    An excerpt from Bad News.
  • “Come Again?” (2001, The Mysterious Press Anniversary Anthology)
  • “Fugue For Felons” (2004, Thieves’ Dozen)
  • “Walking Around Money” (2005, Transgressions; Dortmunder)



  • Enough! (A Travesty & Ordo) (1977)
  • The Curious Facts Preceding My Execution (1968)
  • Levine (1984; Abe Levine)
  • Horse Laugh and Other Stories (1991)
  • A Good Story and Other Stories (1999)Buy this book
  • Thieves Dozen (2004; Dortmunder stories) Buy this book Kindle it!
  • Double Feature (2020) | Buy this book | Kindle it!
    Contains the two novellas, A Travesty and Ordo.


  • “John D. MacDonald: A Remembrance” (1987, Mystery Scene Reader #1)
  • “Peter Rabe” (1989, Murder Off the Rack: Critical Studies of Ten Paperback Masters)
  • “The Tarnished Knight” (Winter 1990, The Armchair Detective, Vol. 23 #1)
  • “Introduction” (1990, The New Edgar Winners: A Mystery Writers of America Anthology)
  • “Foreword” (1991, Thurber on Crime; by James Thurber)
  • “Tricksters, Lovable and Otherwise” (July 19,1998, The New York Times)


  • Elizabeth Taylor: A Fascinating Story of America’s Most Talented Actress and the World’s Most Beautiful Woman (1962, by John B. Allan)
  • Under an English Heaven (1972)
  • The Getaway Car (2014)Buy this book Kindle it!
    Bits and pieces of a writer’s life, including unpublished fiction, parts of an uncompleted autobiography, assorted correspondence, an extended history of private eye fiction and even a recipe for something called “Sloth à la Dortmunder.”



    (British title: Killtown)
    Based on the novel by Richard Stark
  • POINT BLANK | Buy this DVD
    (1967, MGM)
    Based on the novel The Hunter by Richard Stark
    Directed by John Boorman
    Starring Lee Marvin as WALKER (Parker in the novel)
    (Unofficially) based on the novel The Jugger by Richard Stark
    Directed by Jean-Luc Godard
    Starring Anna Karina as a female Parker.
    Based on the novel The Score by Richard Stark
    Directed by Alain Cavalier
    (1967, Paramount)
    101 minutes
    Based on the novel by Donald Westlake
    Screenplay by Ben Starr
    Directed by William Castle
    Starring Sid Caesar, Robert Ryan, Anne Baxter, Kay Medford, Jan Murray, Richard Pryor, Arlene Golonka, Charles McGraw, Ben Blue, Dom DeLuise, Godfrey Cambridge, George Jessel.
    (1968, MGM)
    Based on the novel The Seventh by Richard Stark
    Directed by George Flemyng
    Starring Jim Brown as McCLAIN (Parker in the novel)
  • THE HOT ROCK  | Buy this video  | Buy this DVD
    (1972, Fox)
    Based on the novel by Donald Westlake
    Screenplay by William Goldman
    Score by Quincy Jones
    Directed by Peter Yates
    Starring Robert Redford as DORTMUNDER
    (1973, United Artists)
    89 minutes
    Based on the novel by Donald Westlake
    Screenplay by Donald Westlake
    Directed by Aram Avakian
    Starring Joseph Bologna, Dick Ward, Sheppard Strudwick, John P. Ryan, Ellen Holley, Dolph Sweet, Joe Spinell, Cliff Gorman
    (1973, MGM)
    Based on the novel by Richard Stark
    Directed by John Flynn
    Starring Robert Duvall as EARL MACKLIN (Parker in the novel)
  • BANK SHOT  | Buy the DVD  | Buy the Blu-Ray Watch it now!
    (1974, United Artists)
    Based on the novel by Donald Westlake
    Directed by Gower Champion
    Starring George C. Scott as WALTER UPJOHN BALLANTINE (Dortmunder in the book)
  • HOT STUFF | Buy this video
    (1979, Columbia)
    91 minutes
    Written by Donald Westlake and Michael Kane
    Directed by Dom DeLuise
    Starring Dom DeLuise, Jerry Reed, Suzanne Pleshette, Ossie Davis
    (1983, United Artists)
    Based on the novel by Donald Westlake
    Directed by Gary Nelson
    Starring Gary Coleman
    With Paul leMat as DORTMUNDER
    (1983, EMI)
    Based on the novel by Richard Stark
    Directed by Terry Bradford
    Starring Peter Coyote as STONE
    (1984, France)
    Based on the novel Two Much by Donld Westlake
    (1987, ITC)
    89 minutes
    Written by Donald Westlake
    Directed by Joseph Ruben
    Starring Terry O’Quinn, Shelley Hack, Jill Schoelen, Charles Lanyer, Gillian Barber, Paul Batten, Blu Mankuma
    Cheapo B-horror that delivers the goods.
  • THE GRIFTERS  | Buy this video | Buy this DVD | Buy the Blu-Ray | Watch it now!
    (1990, Cineplex)
    114 minutes
    Based on the novel by Jim Thompson
    Screenplay by Donald Westlake
    Directed by Stephen Frears
    Starring John Cusack, Angelica Huston, Annette Bening, Pat Hingle, J.T. Walsh, Charles Napier, Henry Jones, Gailard Sairtain
    Great version of Jim Thompson classic, with dynamite script by Westlake and superb acting by Cusack, Huston and Bening. As recommended as it gets.
  • WHY ME?
    (1990, Epic)
    Released in France, but in English!
    96 minutes
    Based on the novel by Donald Westlake
    Screenplay by Donald Westlake and Leonard Mass, Jr.
    Directed by Gene Quintano
    Starring Christopher Lambert as GUS CARDINALE (Dortmunder in the book)
  • TWO MUCH  | Buy this video
    (1996, U.S.A./Spain)
    118 minutes
    Based on the novel by Donald Westlake
    Screenplay by Fernando Trueba  and David Trueba
    Directed by Fernando Trueba
    Starring Antonio Banderas, Melanie Griffith, Daryl Hannah, Danny Aiello, Joan Cusack, Eli Wallach, Gabino Diego, Austin Pendleton
    A Spanish/American joint production. Screwball fluff about young musician in love with two sisters at the same time, who invents a twin-brother so he can date both of them. Supposedly Joan Cusack steals the show.
    (aka “The Gods Must Be Daring”)
    Based on the novel Dancing Aztecs by Donald Westlake
  • PAYBACK | Buy this DVD | Buy this Blu-ray | Buy this video
    (1999, Paramount)
    Screenplay by Brian Helgeland and Terry Hayles
    Based on the novel The Hunter by Richard Stark
    Directed by Brian Helgeland
    Starring Mel Gibson as PORTER (Parker in the book)
    I know convential wisdom says that 1967’s Point Blank is the classic, what with Lee Marvin and all that slick, arty style, but there’s something about this unapologetically gritty and nasty flick, starring a pre-fall-from-grace Mel, that really appeals to me. Even more astounding, though, were complaints from some long-time Parker fans that Gibson was “too nice” in the role — which was remedied by a subsequent re-released “director’s cut” on DVD. A terse, violent, nasty, bleak, scuzzy walk on the wild side. Filmed in Chicago.
  • WHAT’S THE WORST THAT COULD HAPPEN? Buy this DVD Buy this video
    (2001, MGM)
    97 minutes
    Based on the novel by Donald Westlake
    Screenplay by Matthew Chapman
    Directed by Sam Weisman
    Produced by Ashok Amritraj, Wendy Dytman
    Co-producer: Peaches Davis
    Associate producer: Carol Kelson
    Executive producers: Lawrence Turman, David Nicksay, John Morrissey, Martin Lawrence, Michael Green, David Hoberman
    Starring Martin Lawrence as KEVIN CAFFREY (Dortmunder in the book)
    Also starring Danny DeVito, John Leguizamo, Glenne Headly, Carmen Ejogo, Bernie Mac, Larry Miller, Nora Dunn, Richard Schiff, William Fichtner, Ana Gasteyer, Sascha Knopf, Siobhan Fallon, GQ, Lenny Clarke, Robin Brown
    Some great performances, particularly by DeVito as the greedy media tycoon who steals Dortmunder’s (oops, Caffrey’s) ring during a botched burglary attempt. But the film is tremendously marred by the fact Lawrence is spectacularly miscast. Much of the real humour in this series is that Dortmunder is the perpetual straight man in a world of comedians — he shouldn’t be as wonky as everyone else.
    (2013, Filmdistrict)
    118 minutes
    Based on the novel Flashfire by Richard Stark
    Screenplay by John J. McLaughlin
    Directed by Taylor Hackford
    Starring Jason Statham as PARKER
    Also starring Jennifer Lopez, Michael Chiklis, Bobby Cannavale, Wendell Pierce, Nick Nolte
    Everyone’s favourite ice-cold professional thief returned, for the first under the name Westlake gave him: Parker. The good news is that Jason Statham, who already looked like a stone-cold bastard, played the lead, in what was being discussed at the time as a possible franchise, and Michael Chiklis, Bobby Cannavale, Wendell Pierce, Nick Nolte and Jennifer Lopez–all pretty good in this kind of stuff–were along for the ride. It did okay, but a sequel never showed up.


    (1979, TV pilot)
    60 minute episodes
    Story and teleplay by Donald Westlake
    Directed by Dan Curtis
    Starring Robert Alda, Edward Andrews , Patrick Collins, Ilene Graff, George Hamilton, Steve Lawrence , Vicki Lawrence, Don Meredith, Stella Stevens, Don Stroud, Nita Talbot, Keenan Wynn
    Guest stars: Rebecca Balding, Joyce DeWitt, Sally Kirkland
    Well, they can’t all be winners.Westlake wrote the pilot for this floppero about the adventures of a nation-spanning train and its passengers. Sort of a land-locked Love Boat, but worse. Maybe if they’d let Idi Amin buy a ticket, the show might have caught on. Then again, a year later, Westlake wrote Kahawa, so maybe it wasn’t a complete waste.
    (1987, TV pilot)
    100 minutes
    Original broadcast: November 30, 1987
    Story and teleplay by Donald Westlake
    Directed by Christopher Hibler
    Associate producers: Ruth A. Foster
    Executive producers: Dean Hargrove, Fred Silverman
    Supervising producer: Joel Steiger
    Original music by Dick DeBenedictis
    Starring Tom Bosley as FATHER FRANK DOWLING
    and Tracy Nelson as Sister Stephanie ‘Steve’ Oskowsky
    Also starring Robert Prescott, Mary Wickes, Mark Arnott, Susan Blakely, Kevin Crowley
    (1989-91, TV series)
    Based on characters created by Ralph McInerny
    Pilot scripted by Donald Westlake
    Directors: Alan Cooke, Charles S. Dubin, Charles S. Dubin, James Frawley, Harry Harris, Christopher Hibler, Russ Mayberry, Sharron Miller, Seymour Robbie, Ron Satlof
    Produced by Joyce Burditt, Barry Steinberg
    Associate producer: Timothy King
    Supervising producers: Robert Hamilton, Robert Schlitt
    Executive producers: Dean Hargrove, Fred Silverman
    Co-producers: Victoria LaFortune, David Solomon
    Starring Tom Bosley as FATHER FRANK DOWLING
    and Tracy Nelson as Sister Stephanie ‘Steve’ Oskowsky
    Also starring James Stephens, Mary Wickes
    Guest stars: Colm Meaney, Michelle Forbes, Linda Kelsey, Katherine Moffat, John Vernon, Al Rossi, Bill Macy, Roger L. Simon, Roscoe Lee Browne, Candy Clark, Ed Lauter, Yaphet Kotto, Stephen Dorff, Michael Des Barres, Anthony LaPaglia, Diane Ladd, Barbara Stock, Kiel Martin, Jennifer Edwards

    • “The Missing Body Mystery” (January 20, 1989)
    • “What Do You Call A Call Girl Mystery” (January 27, 1989)
    • “The Man Who Came To Dinner Mystery” (ep. #1.4) 2/10, 1989)
    • “The Mafia Priest Mystery, Part 1” (February 7, 1989; AKA The Renegade Priest Mystery)
    • “The Mafia Priest Mystery, Part 2” (February 24, 1989; AKA The Renegade Priest Mystery)
    • “The Face In The Mirror Mystery” (March 3, 1989)
    • “The Pretty Baby Mystery” (March 10, 1989)
    • “The Visiting Priest Mystery” (January 4, 1990)
    • “The Exotic Dancer Mystery” (January 11, 1990)
    • “The Sanctuary Mystery” (January 18, 1990)
    • “The Stone Killer Mystery” (January 25, 1990)
    • “The Woman Scorned Mystery” (February 1, 1990)
    • “The Ghost of a Chance Mystery” (February 8, 1990)
    • “The Blind Man’s Bluff Mystery” (February 15, 1990)
    • “The Falling Angel Mystery” (February 22, 1990)
    • “The Perfect Couple Mystery” (March 8, 1990)
    • “The Confidence Mystery” (March 15, 1990)
    • “The Solid Gold Headache Mystery” (March 29, 1990)
    • “The Passionate Painter Mystery” (April 26, 1990)
    • “The Royal Mystery” (September 20, 1990)
    • “The Medical Mystery” (September 27, 1990)
    • “The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea Mystery” (October 4, 1990)
    • “The Showgirl Mystery” (October 18, 1990)
    • “The Movie Mystery” (October 25, 1990)
    • “The Undercover Nun Mystery” (November 1, 1990)
    • “The Murder Weekend Mystery” (November 8, 1990)
    • “The Reasonable Doubt Mystery” (November 15, 1990)
    • “The Vanishing Victim Mystery” (November 29, 1990)
    • “The Christmas Mystery” (December 13, 1990)
    • “The Fugitive Priest Mystery” (January 3, 1991)
    • “The Substitute Sister Mystery” (January 10, 1991)
    • “The Missing Witness Mystery” (January 17, 1991)
    • “The Joyful Noise Mystery” (January 24, 1991)
    • “The Prodigal Son Mystery” (January 31, 1991)
    • “The Mummy’s Curse Mystery” (February 21, 1991)
    • “The Hardboiled Mystery” (March 28, 1991)
    • “The Malibu Mystery” (April 4, 1991)
    (1993, Showtime)
    Based on the short story by Dashiell Hammett
    Teleplay by Donald Westlake
    Starring Christopher Lloyd as THE CONTINENTAL OP
    Part of the Fallen Angels anthology
    (1999, TNT)
    Based on the short story “A Travesty” by Donald Westlake
    Teleplay by William H. Macy and Steven Schachter
    Directed by Steven Schachter
    Produced by Mitch Engel
    Executive producer: Salli Newman
    Starring William Macy, Adam Arkin, Felicity Huffman, James Cromwell, Julia Campbell, James Pickens Jr., Paul Mazursky
    Enjoyable made-for-cable fluff with Macy as a fumblin actor trying to cover up an accidental murder. 


  • RICHARD STARK’S PARKER: THE HUNTER (2009, Parker)Buy this book
    Written and illustrated by Darwyn Cooke
    Based on the novel by Richard Stark
  • THE HOT ROCK (2010, Dortmunder) Buy this DVD
    Written and illustrated by Christian Lacroix (Lax)
    Based on the novel by Donald Westlake
    A lightly cartoonish approach that captures the wit — without losing the grit — of the source material. Recommended.
  • RICHARD STARK’S PARKER: THE OUTFIT (2010, Parker) Buy this book
    Written and illustrated by Darwyn Cooke
    Based on the novel by Richard Stark
  • RICHARD STARK’S PARKER: THE MARTINI EDITION (2011, Parker) Buy this book
    Written and illustrated by Darwyn Cooke
    Based on the novels by Richard Stark
    Includes both The Hunter and The Outfit in one fancy pants oversized, slipcased hardcover edition, with a whopping additional 65 pages of Darwyn Cooke content, plus a brand-new story.
  • RICHARD STARK’S PARKER: THE SCORE (2012, Parker) Buy this book
    Written and illustrated by Darwyn Cooke
    Based on the novel by Richard Stark
  • RICHARD STARK’S PARKER: SLAYGROUND (2013, Parker) Buy this book
    Written and illustrated by Darwyn Cooke
    Based on the novel by Richard Stark


  • “An Interview with Donald Westlake” (Fall 1997, Murderous Intent; by J. Alec West)
  • “Looking on the Dark Side” (Fall 1998, MHCMM)


Report respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith. Thanks to Rudyard Kennedy for the lead.

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