|Plot Summary of Black Gold|
Poisoned Pen Press, June 2002, 24.95,496 pp.
In 1787 France, Colonel Paul de Saint-Martin, a provost of the royal highway patrol, is directed to find and arrest Captain Maurice Fitzroy for the rape and assault on a French noble woman. After making several inquiries he learns that his quarry has escaped to England and is residing in his cousin's home in Bath.
At the request of her host to teach how to read lips, sign and speak to the master's son, a deaf child, Anne Cartier (see MUTE WITNESS) temporarily resides at the same Combe Park home as Fitzroy. Anne and Paul are good friends on the verge of becoming even closer and she is only too happy to help to help Paul with his efforts to kidnap Fitzroy and bring him back to France. Their efforts are sidetracked when Anne's worst enemy is killed on the grounds of Combe Park. Paul, Anne and a Bow Street runner work together to find his killer, no easy task because the man had more enemies than a street dog has fleas.
Fans of Iain Pears rich historical mysteries will want to read BLACK GOLD, a work rich in period detail with characters that are unique to the era. Charles O'Brien is a gifted storyteller who writes about the aristocracy of the late eighteenth century from a commoner's point of view. The novel takes the moral high ground, which helps explain why the protagonists are so appealing.
This synopsis report prepared by Harriet Klausner
|Chapter Analysis of Black Gold|
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 - 20%
Feelings, relationships, character bio/development - 30%
How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) - 40%
Tone of story
- suspenseful (sophisticated fear)
How difficult to spot villain?
- Difficult, but some clues given
Time/era of story:
- 18th century
What % of story relates directly
to the mystery, not the subplot?
Kind of investigator
- skilled citizen investigator
Kid or adult book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
The crook is....
- Get treasure/money from another criminal
- on the run from the law
Any non-mystery subplot?
- life in that culture
Is MAIN CHARACTER an EVIL criminal?
Murder Mystery (killer unknown)
Accounts of torture and death?
- generic/vague references to death/punishment
Amount of dialog
- significantly more dialog than descript
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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