City of Glass Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of City of Glass

This is a story about the struggle of identity. This story is a mystery regarding a persons identity. The story begins with the main character Daniel Quinn a writer receiving a strange phone call by a man named Peter Stillman. Stillman is looking for a private detective named Paul Auster to protect him from somebody; Quinn tries to explain to Peter that he has the wrong number but cannot seem to get his point across. Stillman hangs up with Quinn agreeing to meet him. Quinn is intrigued by the situation as Stillman explains that his father is in town and may try to hurt him.
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Quinn assumes the detective role and agrees to follow Peter Stillman Sr. He begins to follow him and even has a conversation with him. However, one day Quinn loses track of him completely. Not knowing what to do he tries to contact Paul Auster the private detective. However, he tracks down the wrong Paul Auster as the one he meets is a writer. With panic setting in Quinn decides to stay outside Peter Stillman Jr's apartment block, posing as a tramp.

Months pass and nothing happens Quinn see an image of himself and is intrigued to see how he has changed looking more rugged. He decides to return to his apartment and discovers that it has been re-rented to another tenant. Exhausted and not knowing what do he returns to Peter Stillman Jr's apartment the door opens on its own. The apartment is completely stripped and darkened. Quinn collapses from exhaustion and awakens in the room, an unknown character approaches him and serves him food and water, walking out of the apartment again- this is similar to the way Peter Stillman had been living.
The key theme in this story is regarding identity. Quinn is initially a writer who writes detective novels, though soon he becomes ‘Paul Auster' the detective, by taking this case. As he begins to lose himself in this character he later transforms into Peter Stillman, mentally unstable and alone.
Best part of story, including ending: Very thought provoking, a mystery on verious levels.

Best scene in story: My favourite scene was where Quinn loses track of Peter Stillman Sr, and he frantically tries to track him down again, this scene is particularly suspenseful.

Opinion about the main character: Quinn can act very rash at times, which does make the reader dislike him a little.

The review of this Book prepared by Khurram Jowiya a Level 1 Blue Jay scholar

Chapter Analysis of City of Glass

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Plot & Themes

Tone of book?    -   thoughtful Time/era of story    -   1980's-1999 Internal struggle/realization?    -   Yes Struggle over    -   vague finding self/purpose in life (i.e. no plot to book) Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   writer Age:    -   20's-30's Ethnicity/Nationality    -   White (American)


How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   6 () United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Southeast

Writing Style

Amount of dialog    -   significantly more descript than dialog

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Paul Auster Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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