I'd just finished up the 21st novel in the Spenser series, which I've been devouring since early last year, and I checked in at Wikipedia to see which was next, to find that the writer had passed away about 2 weeks ago. It's always strange to feel sad that someone you didn't even know has died, but he had a tendency, according to reports, to write a lot of himself and his family and his relations in his novels. And while they're entertaining, and suspenseful and fun, the best thing about them is that they have heart. Really outstanding books. He was an exceptional writer.
He was found, apparently, at his writing desk. Which seems somberly appropriate.
Mystery novelist Robert Parker dies at 77 - Local News Updates - The Boston Globe:
"Robert B. Parker, whose spare, eloquent sentences turned the tough private investigator Spenser into one of Boston's most recognizable fictional characters, died in his Cambridge home Monday. He was 77.
Publishing 65 books in 37 years, Mr. Parker was as prolific as he was well-read. He featured Spenser -- 'spelled with an 's,' just like the English poet,' he said -- in 37 detective novels. He also wrote 28 other books, including a series each for Jesse Stone, the police chief of fictional Paradise, Mass., and Sunny Randall, a female PI in Boston."