Steps To The Altar Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Steps To The Altar

Berkley, April 2002, 22.95, 320 pp.
ISBN 0425183491

    The central coastal California town of San Celina is home to chief of police Gabe Ortiz and his wife Benni Harper. Although Gabe was once an undercover narcotics officer in the big city, receiving an adrenaline high from collaring a drug dealer, he is content now to work in this quiet college and retirement village. However, whenever a homicide does occur, it seems that Benni is in the middle of it, much to Gate's consternation.
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    Homicide is the farthest thing from Benni's mind now. Her best friend is about to marry her cousin (two people she cherishes) and her grandmother is getting married after forty years of being a widow. Benni is all caught up in wedding preparations when Gabe's ex-lover comes to town determined to win him back. To get her mind off her heartache, Benni becomes involved in another homicide investigation, one that is fifty years old.

   It's interesting to see Benni solve a case that is over a half a century old using old newspaper reports and historical documents. Although STEPS TO AN ALTAR is billed as a mystery, it is as much a romance with Benni having an admirer who finally comes out of the closet. Told in the first person from Gabe and Benni's point of view, readers are able to feel close to both protagonists and understand their feelings and actions.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of Steps To The Altar

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 60%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 30%How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) 10% Tone of story    -   depressing/sad 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?    -   40% Special suspect?    -   lover Misc. Murder Plotlets    -   solving long-past murder    -   Proving innocence of very obvious suspect Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Any non-mystery subplot?    -   feelings towards lover Crime Thriller    -   Yes Murder Mystery (killer unknown)    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Female Profession/status:    -   business executive Age:    -   40's-50'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    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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