Early Autumn, by Robert B. Parker
“The story centers on a private investigator, Spenser, becoming a role model and mentor for a young boy cast off by his parents. It’s about doing what you like in life, but doing it damn well. I took that message to heart, and it changed my life.”
Recommended by Ace Atkins, the author of the Quinn Colson novels The Lost Ones ($16, amazon.com) and The Broken Places ($27, amazon.com), which comes out this month.
To buy: $8, amazon.com.