A Coffin for Dimitrios Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of A Coffin for Dimitrios

Charles Latimer is a mild, agreeable, former British professor who left academia to become a modestly successful writer of detective stories. While vacationing in Turkey in the 1930's, he meets Colonel Haki, an important official in the Turkish police, and a serious fan of Latimer's novels. At first, Haki would like to supply mediocre plots for Latimer's next book, but eventually the conversation turns to real criminals that Haki has known, particularly an arch-fiend named Dimitrios Makropolous, whose body has just been recovered by a fisherman. Certain portions of Dimitrios's criminal career are well-established, but there are several large holes in the timeline. Latimer is fascinated by Dimitrios's story, and decides to travel through the various locales where Dimitrios was known to have engaged in criminal activities (drug dealing, murder, espionage, and political assassination, among others), to see if he can uncover more of the story. As Latimer meets Dimitrios's former associates, he is increasingly drawn into the criminal underworld, until he is indistinguishable from the villains he studies.
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The review of this Book prepared by A. J. Bell

Chapter Analysis of A Coffin for Dimitrios

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book descript. of violence and chases 20%Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 30%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 40%How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) 10% Tone of story    -   suspenseful (sophisticated fear) Time/era of story:    -   1930's-1950's Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Crime Thriller    -   Yes General Crime (including known murderer)    -   Yes Who's the criminal enemy here?    -   finding a known killer

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   writer Ethnicity/Race    -   British


Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   Turkey    -   Eastern Europe

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Amount of dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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