Paradise Lost Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Paradise Lost

JA Jance
Morrow, Aug 2001, 25.00, 371 pp.
ISBN: 038097729X

    In Cochise County, Arizona twelve-year-old Jenny Brady and her friend Dora Matthews sneak out of the Girl Scout's camp after lights are out to smoke cigarettes. However, the two mischievous girls soon find a corpse. Though she has a homicide to investigate, Jenny's mother Joanna, the county sheriff, is livid with her daughter, not only for sneaking out but for smoking as well.
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    However, Joanna revises her concern when a hit and run driver kills Dora. Not believing in coincidences, Joanna worries that someone wants to eliminate the witnesses to the first killing, which makes her beloved daughter a potential next victim.   Joanna uses all her police skills to uncover the identity of the culprit before Jenny becomes the next casualty.

    As expected from JA Jance (see the Beaumont mysteries as well as other novels in this series), PARADISE LOST is paradise found by fans of police procedurals. An intense personal side to Joanna leads to a taut story line that enhances the who-done-it. Both subplots converge on the heroine as her personal life and professional lives collide. Whether it is Seattle or Arizona, Ms. Jance always provides a powerhouse of entertainment.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of Paradise Lost

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Plot & Themes

How difficult to spot villain?    -   Difficult, but some clues given Time/era of story:    -   1980's-1999 What % of story relates directly to the mystery, not the subplot?    -   60%    -   70% Kind of investigator    -   police procedural, American Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Any non-mystery subplot?    -   feelings towards family/friends Crime Thriller    -   Yes Murder Mystery (killer unknown)    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Female Profession/status:    -   police/lawman Age:    -   20's-30's


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   West Desert?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment    -   moderately detailed references to deaths Amount of dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog    -   significantly more descript than dialog

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J.A. Jance Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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