Criminal Intent Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Criminal Intent

Putnam, Aug 2002, 24.9, 416 pp.
ISBN: 0399149171

Producer Richard “Big Dick” MacArthur dies by apparently falling off the deck of his Baker Beach, California home. The police detain the movie mogul's third wife, Angelina Chavez, who was found by a bridge unconscious in a family car. After questioning and checking out her story, the police accuse Angelina of murdering her spouse as the murder weapon, his Oscar, is in the trunk of her vehicle. San Francisco attorneys Mike Daley and Rosie Fernandez become the defense team because Angelina is the niece of the former.
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The Big Dick case would be difficult enough to provide a defense for without the family connection. However, the lawyers have other clients in various states of legal trouble with most related in some way to the firm. Trying to balance each one's need while working a homicide case keeps Mike and Rosie working overtime.

The latest Daley-Fernandez novel is an engaging legal thriller that is superior when the story line focuses on either the Big Dick homicide case or the tour of the Streets of San Francisco. The secondary legal cases feel like filler and leave the impression that except for the police, the entire Bay Area is related to Mike, Rosie, or someone else in the firm. Still the prime plot is cleverly developed so that sub-genre readers will enjoy the homicide defense while series fans will like insight into the extended family.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of Criminal Intent

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book descript. of violence and chases 10%Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 60%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?    -   70% Misc. Murder Plotlets    -   Proving innocence of very obvious suspect Kind of investigator    -   skilled citizen investigator Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Any non-mystery subplot?    -   feelings towards lover Legal Thriller    -   Yes Legal Plotlets    -   finding out whether someone is really guilty Crime Thriller    -   Yes Murder Mystery (killer unknown)    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   a lawyer creature Age:    -   20's-30's Ethnicity/Race    -   White/American


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   California

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Amount of dialog    -   significantly more dialog than descript

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