The Forty-First Thief Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Forty-First Thief

On a public beach in St. Tropez, Pascal, a bi-sexual young man is found stabbed and sexually mutilated in a manner that has been associated with murders in the Middle East. When the police detective who is in charge of the investigation is also discovered murdered, 77 year old retired soldier, General Pineau, France's head of the Middle East Section of counter espionage is called in to help with the crime.
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In Washington, El Kaffar, the representative of a small Middle Eastern country delivers an ultimatum from his ruthless potentate to the President of the United States. If the President does not do as he is bid, all oil fields within the Middle Eastern country will be blown up, thus ending all exports and grinding the U. S. to a halt.

Simultaneously, the President of General Motors and his two top executives are negotiating with a genius (whom they have never met) for the design of a ground breaking solar powered car. They are negotiating through messengers.

But the president of America's largest oil company, who sits on the board of General Motors, is determined to use all force, including murder, to stop the development of this automobile. He has traced the messages to the Riviera and sits in a yacht off the coast of St. Tropez plotting (with assistance from the blackmailing potentate) to find and murder this inventor.

When it is found out that Pascal was one of the genius' messengers, the police and General Pineau, along with an elderly Jew working for Israel's Secret Service, begin to untangle the web of deceit and violence.

The genius is the victim of a grenade attack while dining in a luxury hotel; the United States President prepares to invade the Middle Eastern country; and El Kaffar turns out to be a pivotal character.

The review of this Book prepared by a Level 1 Blue Jay scholar

Chapter Analysis of The Forty-First Thief

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book descript. of violence and chases 20%Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 40%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 20%How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) 20% Tone of story    -   suspenseful (sophisticated fear) Time/era of story:    -   1960's-1970's Spying/Terrorism Thriller    -   Yes Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Who's the terrorist enemy here?    -   arabs and/or muslims

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   government investigator Age:    -   60's-90's Ethnicity/Race    -   French


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Northeast Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   France Desert?    -   Yes Desert:    -   hostile arabs Misc setting    -   resort/hotel

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   very gorey descriptions deaths/dead bodies Explicit sex in book?    -   Yes What kind of sex:    -   touching of anatomy    -   actual description of sex    -   descript. of other female areas Amount of dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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