|Plot Summary of A Shock to the System|
|"Graham Marshall is a man on the edge. At the age of forty-one, he awakens one day with the realization that he hates everything about his life. He hates his irritating and suspicious wife Merrily, he hates their children and her mother, he hates his house, he hates his financial situation, and he hates the fact that the job he has worked for for twenty years is being given to a yuppie named Benham.
On the night that he is informed of Benham's promotion, Graham encounters a beggar on a lonely foot-bridge. The beggar's mistake of adressing Graham as a success causes him to snap. Graham kills the old man with his umbrella and dumps him in the river.
Returning home, Graham slowly comes to the realization that he has gotten away with murder, and that he could do so again if he wants to. Painstakingly, Graham plots his wife's demise, finally killing her in an electrical "accident" while he is away in Brussels.
With his wife's death, Graham's life begins improving. He turns his children over to their aunt, sells his home, and begins dating Benham's secretary. But Graham is not happy. He wants the job that Benham is set to receive, and he now has a few skills that his rival is unaware of.
As the body-count grows and Graham sinks deeper and deeper into megalomania and sociopathy, a policeman begins snooping around. Has Graham committed the perfect crime? Or has he forgotten one crucial detail?"
James Craver, Resident Scholar
|Review Analysis of A Shock to the System|
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Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Composition of Book
descript. of violence and chases - 20%
Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives - 30%
Feelings, relationships, character bio/development - 30%
How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) - 20%
Tone of story
Time/era of story:
Kid or adult book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
The crook is....
- stalking/killing innocents
Mostly a criminal POV story
- business executive
How much violence does he/she use?
- just the right amount
How sensitive is this character?
- mean, arrogant
Sense of humor
- Cynical sense of humor
- Very much smarter than other characters
- healthy but a geeky weakling
- sail boat
- mostly 3rd
Accounts of torture and death?
- moderately detailed references to deaths
How many deaths?
What kind of sex:
- vague references
- descript of kissing
- actual description of sex
Unusual forms of death
- frying (electrocuted)
- blunt clubbing (like seals)
- exploded into bits
Unusual form of death?
Amount of dialog
- roughly even amounts of descript and dialog