Mad Cow Nightmare Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Mad Cow Nightmare

St. Martin's, Apr 2005, 23.95, 256 pp.
ISBN: 0312331339

Nola is recovering from brain surgery in a Toronto hospital when her significant other Ritchie forces her to leave and go to Ruth Wilmarth's Upstate New York dairy farm to talk to his brother. Darren. Apparently Darren has left his Uncle Tormey's Tonawanda farm to work as a hired hand for the summer at Ruth's spread.
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Nola left the hospital without being released and a patient died there from Creutzfeldt Jekob disease, a form of mad cow disease that people can catch from infected food. The hospital wants Nola to return so they can test her, but she wants to get her son away from Tormey first. Darren, who is Colm's cousin and Ruth's lover, refuses to go back to his uncle's farm despite his brother's pleading. Ritchie turns violent even towards Nola, but soon is found dead. Everyone except Ruth thinks Nola killed him; Ruth, though she has problems with the USDA confiscating her herd, tries to prove Nola is innocent although her lover Colm is on the police force and convinced Nola killed Ritchie.

Harriet Klausner
The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of Mad Cow Nightmare

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Plot & Themes

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?    -   70% Misc. Murder Plotlets    -   Proving innocence of very obvious suspect Kind of investigator    -   amateur citizen investigator Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Any non-mystery subplot?    -   running a business/making a living Crime Thriller    -   Yes Murder Mystery (killer unknown)    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Female Profession/status:    -   small businessman Age:    -   20's-30's Ethnicity/Race    -   White/American


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Northeast

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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