Barbara Parker, R.I.P.

Barbara Parker, the New York Times bestselling author of a dozen thrillers – most notably the Gail Connor/Anthony Quintana series – died early Saturday morning at the Hospice By The Sea in Boca Raton after a long illness. She was 62. Oline Cogdill has written an obituary for the South Florida Sun-Sentinel that includes tributes from Les Standiford and Books & Books owner Mitch Kaplan, who called Parker a unifying figure in the crime community. “The general public knows her as someone who can tell wonderful

stories. But so many of us know her personally because of her

generosity and supportive nature. She was instrumental in profiling the

community here through her books. She always made her events personal

so you got a sense that you knew her.”

From Hawaii, where Left Coast Crime has just begun, Lee Goldberg writes: “I worked very closely with her for the last few years on the MWA’s

membership committee and admired her humor, her intelligence, and her

good-nature. Now I know why it’s raining in Hawaii today.” Parker’s final novel, THE RECKONING, is slated for publication this December by Vanguard Press.

Cogdill also reports that in lieu of flowers, the family prefers donations to help writers.

Donations can be sent to the Author Sponsorship Fund, Mystery Writers

of America, 1140 Broadway, New York, NY 10001.

UPDATE: Cogdill has more appreciations from James O. Born, Elaine Viets and Kristee Montee at Off the Page, and tributes roll in from James W. Hall, Laura Lippman, Blaize Clement, and Lesa Holstine.

UPDATE II: Parker’s agent, Richard Curtis, pays tribute as well.