|Plot Summary of Alone At Night|
St. Martin's August 2004, 24.95, 352 pp.
One night in 1984 in Redstone, Minnesota, Sheriff Sigvald Sampson gets a call from his deputy that Andrea Bergstad was missing from her job at the One-Stop service station. Whoever called about the empty store left by the time the deputy sheriff went to investigate the scene. As the days pass, the sheriff believes that they will never find the couple who were on the security tape, people who might give them a clue about what happened to Andrea.
In the present, Mars Bahr and his partner Nettie Frinch transfer out of the Minneapolis Police Department and join the Minnesota's Cold Case Unit. They work the Andrea Bergstad case with the full cooperation of the current sheriff and former Sheriff Sampson. The case airs on the television true crime show, The Get List and a man calls in on the hotline claiming he represents the person who dialed 911 all those years ago. After Mars talk to him, he finds a clue that jumpstarts the investigation and puts everyone he holds dear in danger.
ALONE AT NIGHT is told two decades apart from the perspective of two dedicated police officers who believe that no murderer should walk free. Sampson does all he can to help Mars in the present and is more interested justice than in caring who solves the crime. K.J. Erickson has written a fantastic police procedural melding past and present in a way that seems effortless but is in reality a very tricky writing technique that only the best authors can do right.
This synopsis report prepared by Harriet Klausner
|Chapter Analysis of Alone At Night|
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Composition of Book
descript. of violence and chases - 10%
Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives - 40%
Feelings, relationships, character bio/development - 40%
How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) - 10%
Tone of story
- suspenseful (sophisticated fear)
How difficult to spot villain?
- Very difficult--no foreshadowing/clues
Time/era of story:
- 2000+ (Present)
What % of story relates directly
to the mystery, not the subplot?
Misc. Murder Plotlets
- solving long-past murder
Kind of investigator
- police procedural, American
Kid or adult book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
Any non-mystery subplot?
- life in small town
Murder Mystery (killer unknown)
Accounts of torture and death?
- generic/vague references to death/punishment
Amount of dialog
- significantly more dialog than descript
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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