|Plot Summary of Black Water|
Hyperion, Apr 2002, 23.95, 338 pp.
Orange County Deputy Sheriff Archie Wildcraft lies in a hospital near death from the bullet lodged in his brain while his wife Gwen is already dead. The law enforcement officials detest that one of their brothers killed his wife and tried to commit suicide. Only Detective Merci Rayborn thinks differently though circumstantial evidence targets Archie as the culprit.
Though he does not remember what happened, Archie believes that he never murdered his spouse though the media has convicted him. Archie takes things into his own hands and goes after an unknown killer. Merci chases after Archie. However, as he plays cat and mouse with her, both undergo a paradigm switch from believing Gwen unfortunately took a bullet aimed for Archie to thinking Archie took a bullet aimed for Gwen. Now they separately seek a culprit who wanted Gwen dead and has no qualms about adding two cops to the victim list.
The key to this strong police procedural is the clever way T. Jefferson Parker enables the reader to observe Merci up front and personal without slowing down a fast-paced yet unique cat and mouse story line. Merci's personal life (single mom) and peer ostracization in her professional life due to the aftermath of her previous case (see THE BLUE HOUR) brilliantly intertwine in her hunt for Archie who, in a subplot, seeks the killer. Merci in her third appearance and to a lesser degree Archie make BLACK WATER a must read for fans of the author and those who enjoy a convincing police investigation.
This synopsis report prepared by Harriet Klausner
|Chapter Analysis of Black Water|
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Composition of Book
descript. of violence and chases - 20%
Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives - 50%
Feelings, relationships, character bio/development - 20%
How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) - 10%
Tone of story
- suspenseful (sophisticated fear)
How difficult to spot villain?
- Difficult, but some clues given
Time/era of story:
- 2000+ (Present)
What % of story relates directly
to the mystery, not the subplot?
Kind of investigator
- amateur citizen investigator
Kid or adult book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
Any non-mystery subplot?
- feelings towards family/friends
Murder Mystery (killer unknown)
- small businessman
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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