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The Tawdry Yellow Brick Road Book Review Summary

Detailed Plot Synopsis of The Tawdry Yellow Brick Road



Five Star, Jul 2004, 25.95, 322 pp.
ISBN: 1594141940

In Eugene, Oregon, parole officer Madrigal “Maddy” Harper raises her twelve years old son Skylar by herself in a trailer park. Sky's dad not only failed to grow up, but also deserted his child once he realized the kid suffered from Asberger's Syndrome, a type of Autism.

Sky rarely finds anything fascinating so when he does Maddy goes all out to further his interest. Thus, they attend a Star Train science fiction convention, as the lad is a big fan of the series. At the ElfCon, Maddy notices parole jumper Abner Farelli. Being taller, heavier, and confident that she can take the smaller man, Maddy gives chase. Abner escapes when Maddy crashes into despondent Star Train author Everett Wilkins.

Not long afterward, someone shoots Abner using Maddy's stolen gun. Her alibi actor hunk Richard Battersea refuses to give her an alibi because he fears how his wife will react. Worrying about what will become of Sky if she goes to prison; Maddy investigates the murder of Abner.

Maddy and Sky make this investigative tale work as readers will see a loving mother and son struggle with his condition by doing “normal” things together. Maddy is a terrific protagonist, who depends on few people except those she trusts like her best bud when it comes to Sky. The story line is intriguing due to insight into Asberger's Syndrome, which is cleverly woven into the plot as part of the relationships between characters. No wizard behind curtains to make things right, Maddy knows that the yellow brick road leads to prison if she fails to uncover the identity of the killer.

Harriet Klausner
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner








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Chapter Analysis of The Tawdry Yellow Brick Road

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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% Special suspect?    -   investigator him/herself 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 family/friends Crime Thriller    -   Yes Murder Mystery (killer unknown)    -   Yes

Main Character

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

Setting

United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Pacific NW

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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David Bischoff Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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