I first read Parker back in the late 80's, enjoying his first couple of books Laguna Heat and Little Saigon. I kind of dipped in and out of him over the past 15 years or so, with him falling off my radar for a while. Both these books were kept in the library for a future re-read and I hope I get around to them someday.
He has penned about 10 standalone books, in addition to a series of three featuring Merci Rayborn an Orange County detective (haven't read these ones) and six books so far in the Charlie Hood series.
Parker is a pretty good writer from memory - a fact borne out by a couple of Edgar wins an further nominations for Egdar, Anthony and Macavity Awards, all of them in the best novel category.
LA Outlaws is the first and The Jaguar is the fifth in the series. Obviously books 2,3 and 4 are around somewhere. For those kindred spirits and impulsive souls the full series is as follows:
1. L.A. Outlaws (2008)
2. The Renegades (2009)
3. Iron River (2009)
4. The Border Lords (2011)
5. The Jaguar (2012)
6. The Famous and the Dead (2013)
Rush out and buy now!
Los Angeles is gripped by the exploding celebrity of Allison Murietta, her real identity unknown, a modern-day Jesse James with the compulsion to steal beautiful things, the vanity to invite the media along, and the conscience to donate much of her bounty to charity. Nobody ever gets hurt--until a job ends with ten gangsters lying dead and a half- million dollars worth of glittering diamonds missing.
Rookie Deputy Charlie Hood discovers the bodies, and he prevents an eyewitness--a schoolteacher named Suzanne Jones--from leaving the scene in her Corvette. Drawn to a mysterious charisma that has him off-balance from the beginning, Hood begins an intense affair with Suzanne. As the media frenzy surrounding Allison's exploits swells to a fever pitch and the Southland's most notorious killer sets out after her, a glimmer of recognition blooms in Hood, forcing him to choose between a deeply held sense of honor and a passion that threatens to consume him completely. With a stone-cold killer locked in relentless pursuit, Suzanne and Hood continue their desperate dance around the secrets that brought them together, unsure whether each new dawn may signal the day their lies catch up with them.
Erin McKenna, a beautiful songwriter married to a crooked Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy, is kidnapped by Benjamin Armenta, the ruthless leader of the powerful Gulf Cartel. But his demands turn out to be as unusual as the crumbling castle in which Erin is kept. She is ordered to compose a unique narcocoriddo, a modern-day folk ballad of the kind that have recorded the exploits of the drug dealers, gunrunners, and outlaws who have highlighted Mexican history for generations. Under threat of death, Armenta orders Erin to tell his life story - in music - and write 'the greatest narcocorrido of all time.' Allowed to wander the dark hallways of the castle retreat with only a guitar and a mysterious old priest to keep her company, Erin must produce the most beautiful song that these men have ever heard. As the mesmerizing music and lyrics of Erin's song cascade from the jungle hideout, they serve as a siren song to the two men who love Erin: her outlaw husband, Bradley Smith, and the lawman Charlie Hood - two men who together have the power to rescue her. Here, amid the ancient beauty and haunted landscape of the Yucatecan lowlands, the long-simmering rivalry between these men will be brought closer to its explosive finale. T. Jefferson Parker, who is widely hailed as his generation's most accomplished and talented crime novelist, delivers a crime thriller that dramatically redefines the landscape of the cartel wars as an epic clash of good and evil.