Donald E. Westlake

Aliases: Richard Stark

Donald E. Westlake

Donald E. Westlake (1933-2008) was one of the most prolific and talented authors of American crime fiction.  He began his career in the late 1950's, churning out novels for pulp houses—often writing as many as four novels a year under various pseudonyms—but soon began publishing under his own name.  His most well-known characters were John Dortmunder, an unlucky thief, and a ruthless criminal named Parker.  His writing earned him three Edgars and a Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America. 

Westlake's cinematic prose and brisk dialogue made his novels attractive to Hollywood, and several motion pictures were made from his books, with stars such as Lee Marvin and Mel Gibson. Westlake wrote several screenplays himself, receiving an Academy Award nomination for his adaptation of The Grifters, Jim Thomopsom's noir classic. You can find his website at this link

"Donald Westlake's writing was like the characters he created: broiling emotion under a straightforward, spare and efficient surface." - The Guardian

"Westlake quickly established himself as a master of what [critic Anthony Boucher] called 'sustained narrative and observation within the framework of a self-consistent world, alien to law and convention'." - Los Angeles Times

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