|Plot Summary of The Night Caller|
Cancer survivor, divorcee, father, and ex-cop, Ezekiel "Coop" Cooper had no direction in life. Finding his murdered daughter changed all that. He was now dedicated to finding Bette's killer. As unseemly as it may be, Coop reluctantly teams up with a crime writer in the hopes they will bring the killer to justice more quickly. Coop soon realizes he has made a mistake, as the so called writer ends up revealing their identities to the killer himself. Meanwhile, the killer doesn't stop his murder of young ladies despite being the hunted. Soon, he hunts Coop and those close to him, as they have gotten closer to the killer than they realize.
This synopsis report prepared by Tracey Ray
Kensington, Oct 2001, 6.99 400 pp.
Living alone in Manhattan, Ezekiah “Coop” Cooper feels lonely. He retired from the NYPD due to cancer, which is currently in remission. His wife divorced him and has become an environmental activist. His daughter lives and works in New Jersey, but though they love one another they rarely share anything personal. That is why Coop is happy to be seeing his child Bette in the family bungalow in Breezy Point.
When he arrives, he finds the most horrid scene. Someone murdered his daughter. A few days later, Coop talks to his former partner on the force, Art Billard to learn what the police know. Next he travels to New Jersey to talk to Bette's associates and friends. Ultimately, he meets mystery writer Deni Greene who believes a serial killer has murdered Bette. Coop reluctantly accepts a partnership with the unfeeling author, who will use anyone including a wrongfully locked up convict in Florida to attain her goals. However, neither one knows how dangerous THE NIGHT CALLER actually is, but they will soon find out.
Though readers will need a humongous leap of faith as to how Deni put together her belief in a serial killer, THE NIGHT CALLER remains a powerful thriller. The story line is loaded with action, but it is Coop who makes the tale sing, as the audience will empathize with his plight. John Lutz has written a powerful novel that grabs reader attention from the beginning and keeps readers wondering whether the hero or the villain will triumph.
This synopsis report prepared by Harriet Klausner
|Chapter Analysis of The Night Caller|
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Composition of Book
descript. of violence and chases - 30%
Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives - 30%
Feelings, relationships, character bio/development - 30%
How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) - 10%
Tone of story
- suspenseful (sophisticated fear)
How difficult to spot villain?
- Difficult, but some clues given
Time/era of story:
What % of story relates directly
to the mystery, not the subplot?
- chronically deranged person
Murder of certain profession?
- "All in the family" murder
Misc. Murder Plotlets
- Killer purposely leaves clues
Kind of investigator
- police procedural, American
- amateur citizen investigator
Kid or adult book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
Any non-mystery subplot?
- feelings towards lover
Murder Mystery (killer unknown)
Accounts of torture and death?
- moderately detailed references to deaths
- very gorey references to deaths/dead bodies and torture
Explicit sex in book?
What kind of sex:
- descript of kissing
- touching of anatomy
- use of artificial tools
- actual description of sex
Unusual forms of death
- blunt clubbing (like seals)
Unusual form of death?
Amount of dialog
- roughly even amounts of descript and dialog
- significantly more descript than dialog
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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