Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Vade in pacem

I've looked at the Bouchercon history page often enough, you'd think it would have sunk in that this year is the third, not the second Bouchercon to be held in San Francisco. I've been focused on 1985, and the fact that 2010 marks 25 years since the World Mystery Convention visited the City by the Bay.

But Bouchercon was also held in San Francisco in 1982, a fact I hadn't paid much attention to until today, when I read Janet Rudolph's blog, Mystery Fanfare, and realized that Robert B. Parker was the Guest of Honor that year. In 1982, Parker was about 10 years into his career, and had published only 9 of his 58 novels. We've been hearing all day about his achievements and the mark he made on American literature; I like to think of him enjoying himself with Janet and Don Herron and the other Bouchercon attendees that year.

I'm going to miss reading his stories as they were published - every new book was the cause for "Parker night", which always involved something yummy to drink and a naughty snack - you simply cannot read those books on an empty stomach, the food descriptions are just too fabulous. I'm grateful, though, that the books and his wonderful, spare, complicated writing are there for us to read again, whenever we want.

Here's a link to Parker's press room, where there's an audio clip of Robert and his son Dan singing Moon River.