Meet Frantz Schmidt: executioner, torturer and, most unusually for his times, diarist. Following in his father's footsteps, Frantz entered the executioner's trade as an Apprentice. 394 executions and forty-five years later, he retired to focus his attentions on running the large medical practice that he had always viewed as his true vocation. Through examination of Frantz's exceptional and often overlooked record, Joel F. Harrington delves deep into a world of human cruelty, tragedy and injustice. At the same time, he poses a fascinating question: could a man who routinely practiced such cruelty also be insightful, compassionate - even progressive? The Faithful Executioner is the biography of an ordinary man struggling to overcome an unjust family curse; it is also a remarkable panorama of a Europe poised on the cusp of modernity, a world with startling parallels to our own.
Gareth Fitzallen is celebrated for four things: his handsome face, his notable charm, his aristocratic connections, and an ability to give the kind of pleasure that has women begging for more. Normally he bestows his talents on experienced, worldly women. But when he heads to Langdon s End to restore a property he inherited and to investigate a massive art theft he lays plans to seduce a most unlikely lady. They know, as he does not, that the Surprise has a stranger aboard: and what they, for their part, do not know is that the stranger is potentially as dangerous as a light in the powder magazine itself. "" By the time Richard Stark sat down to write "Deadly Edge" in The Faithful Executioner: Life and Death in the Sixteenth Century pdf 1971, he'd been chronicling the adventures of his antihero, Parker, for nearly a decade. But it turns out he was just warming up: the next three "Parker" novels would see Stark crank everything up a notch - tightening the writing, heightening the violence, and, most of all, hardening the deadly heister at the books' heart. "Deadly Edge" kicks things off by bidding a brutal adieu to the 1960s: Parker robs a rock concert, but the heist goes sour, and he finds himself - and his woman, Claire - menaced by a pair of sadistic, drug-crazed hippies. Slayground turns the hunter into prey, as Parker gets trapped in a shuttered amusement park, besieged by a bevy of local mobsters. He's low on bullets - but, as anyone who's crossed his path knows, that definitely doesn't mean he's defenseless. Finally, in Plunder Squad, job after job disintegrates into failure and violence, and a rare act of mercy from earlier in the series comes back to bite Parker - hard. These books by Stark reveal a master craftsman working at the height of his powers, and they deserve a place on the bookshelf of every fan of crime fiction.
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