|Plot Summary of Too Beautiful to Die|
Blades Overstreet, a black ex-NYPD cop obligates himself to a gorgeous soap star, appropriately named Precious, as a favor to Jimmy Lucas, the man who had saved his life. Precious wants to know the identity of her father and someone is willing to tell her who he is for $50,000, so Blades offers his protective services to assist her with this transaction. When they both find their contact, who unbeknownst to them is an ex-FBI agent, dead in his apartment, Blades realizes that this small favor has turned into one huge mess. And if things couldn't get worse for Blades, Precious is found dead in his apartment. How will Blades clear his name? Who killed Precious and why? Most importantly, who was Precious father?
This synopsis report prepared by dee stewart
Putnam, Jul 2003, 23.95, 304 pp.
Three years may have passed, but African-American Blades Overstreet remains bitter over the incident that nearly cost him his life and ultimately did cost him his wife. During a bust, an undercover white cop “accidentally” shot police officer Blades, who felt it was a deliberate effort to eliminate a black cop. The brass told him to shut up so he quit and sued. The acrimonious aftertaste and avenging obsession over the subsequent two years led to his wife Anais leaving him to go to California.
Jimmy Lucas once saved Blades' life so he now asks a big favor of Blades. Jimmy wants Blades to help his "Precious" find her long lost father. Warning Jimmy that the debt is now paid, Blades begins making inquiries only he finds a murdered FBI agent during his investigation. Already detested by the NYPD brass and most of its rank and file for failing to live up to its blue color code, Blades finds federal and local law enforcement want to hang his black butt with the crime. He knows he needs to uncover with 200 proof evidence the identity of the real culprit or he will find himself behind bars.
Though containing a powerful condemnation of racism, this exciting urban noir is clearly for those in the audience who appreciate macho males bragging about sexual conquests in between acts of violence. So the question begs itself as to why this suburban female reviewer kept reading in spite of feeling like an outsider. Somehow Blades hooks the reader as an underdog David who the audience follows in hopes he wins the day against entrenched Goliath bureaucracies and regains his love. This work is clearly for specified sub-genre fans that will enjoy Blade's New York City joy ride.
This synopsis report prepared by Harriet Klausner
|Chapter Analysis of Too Beautiful to Die|
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Composition of Book
descript. of violence and chases - 10%
Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives - 40%
Feelings, relationships, character bio/development - 30%
How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) - 20%
Tone of story
- suspenseful (sophisticated fear)
How difficult to spot villain?
- Difficult, but some clues given
Time/era of story:
- 2000+ (Present)
What % of story relates directly
to the mystery, not the subplot?
- investigator him/herself
Kind of investigator
- skilled citizen investigator
Kid or adult book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
Any non-mystery subplot?
- minority/women/homosexual issues
Murder Mystery (killer unknown)
- private investigator
- champion of justice
Accounts of torture and death?
- no torture/death
- generic/vague references to death/punishment
Explicit sex in book?
What kind of sex:
- descript of kissing
- descript. of breasts
Amount of dialog
- significantly more dialog than descript
- roughly even amounts of descript and dialog
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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