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Group Read Books - archive > Think of a Number Part 2-A Chapter 17-24 - spoilers welcome

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message 1: by Ann (last edited Jul 29, 2014 01:57AM) (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14214 comments This is the first half of part two of the book, Macabre Games, pages 116-176, Chapters 17-24.
If the first to post could provide a brief summary that would be helpful. Spoilers welcome in this thread.


message 2: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 7794 comments PART TWO – MACABRE GAMES

Chapter 17 – Quite a lot of blood

Dave gets a call from the officer in charge of the investigation, who is someone he knows, a bit of a pain but a good investigator. Mark’s throat was cut with a broken whiskey bottle.

Dave gets to the crime scene to brief Jack Hardwick, the investigator. He shows Dave the scene of the murder. Dave guesses the whiskey bottle was Four Roses, tells Hardwick about the other poems (one was left on the body). Hardwick shows Dave the perp’s footprints that lead to a lawn chair where he sat and smoked cigarettes before he committed the crime. But there’s more…..

Chapter 18 – Footprints to nowhere

….there are footprints leading away from the murder scene, and they stop abruptly short of a copse of trees and from the nearby roadway.
Hardwick shows Dave the poem left on the body, which references the perp’s perplexing escape through the snow and the “scum of the earth” who “witness” his “rebirth.” Dave points out that the killer seems to hate someone else besides the victim: Hardwick (he says with a smirk).

Chapter 19 – Scum of the earth

Hardwick seems up for the challenge the murderer has left him. Hardwick and Dave reflect on the Strunk case – he mailed body parts to policemen. Hardwick recalls details of Dave’s past that Dave didn’t remember he had revealed.

Chapter 20 – A family friend

Dave and Hardwick meet Carl Smole, an old friend of Caddy’s who also acts as her attorney. Hardwick asks Caddy some questions and asks o see the poems and letters in Mark’s desk. Caddy says fine.

Chapter 21 – Priorities

Hardwick asks Dave to drop by the police stations to give a statement and to sit in on a briefing—he wants Dave’s help.

Sonya has left Dave a message—she has a client very interested in his work.

Madeleine comes home and reminds Dave they have guests coming for dinner tomorrow. She is angry that he has forgotten and says his brain is so full of murder, etc., that there is no room for anything else.

Chapter 22 – Getting it straight

Mark attends a briefing with Hardwick and staff, including the police chief, the DA, and his assistant. The medical examiner reports the real cause of death was a bullet to the base of the skull. After discussion they conclude the shot was muffled with some down filled article.

Chapter 23 – Without a trace

The team reviews the evidence. Sergeant Wigg points out all the odd elements of the case – the lawn chair, the cigarettes with no DNA, the footprints, etc. She feels that the lawn chair will be the key to the case. New evidence is reported – the killer used his finger to write a word on the back of each poem. The words read “Dumb evil cops.”

Chapter 24 – Crime of the year

Kline (DA) is excited by this new piece of evidence, calling the case the “Crime of the year” a media magnet. They discuss the fact that a mob man was staying at the Institute and heard the shot, informing the assistant. Kline notices Dave at the table and finally realizes who he is, and the additional media attention he will bring to the case.


message 3: by Carol/Bonadie (last edited Jul 31, 2014 09:09PM) (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 7794 comments This case is getting curioser and curiosier. I'm glad the police are in on it now, although I worry that the killer will now lash out at one of them. Hardwick seems to be an ally, although he is a bit annoying. This female cop Wigg seems sharp. The DA is a political animal but at least he is not getting in the way, unlike the police chief Rodriguez. Well, he's not exactly getting in the way, yet, but demonstrating the potential to let his ego and desire to control things send the investigation off on a tangent.

I love the depiction of the two other cops and Tom Cruise 1 and 2. Can't you just picture them with their short, well built bodies and their ray bans?


message 4: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14214 comments Carol: yes, the Tom Cruise twin cops' descriptions were too funny and really bring a picture of them to mind,
Dave describes all of the team investigating the murder with particular detail. The dysfunction of this group is almost a caricature, especially the chief Rodriguez.
I was a bit surprised how quickly Dave was included when he first came on the scene, and never seemed to be a suspect. His old cop "friend" Hardwick comes across as schizophrenically as Wife Madeline. One minute Hardwick seems an ally, the next he isn't.


message 5: by Ann (last edited Aug 02, 2014 12:22AM) (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14214 comments The footprints to nowhere are definitely a puzzle. This killer is pulling something off at a level of detail that seems beyond most that we read about and I find myself grateful that up to this point we aren't having chapters from the pov of the murderer/ stalker except for the intro.
I don't think I want to be inside this guys head. Dave's head is enough. He is going to have to figure this one out, how can he let this go and let others solve it.


message 6: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14214 comments I think Sergeant Wigg could team with Dave and put all of this crazy evidence together and solve the case. Dave is so extremely capable when it comes to a crime to solve, he remembers details, makes sense of the impossible, so why can't he remember the dinner party and pecans for the dessert?


message 7: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 7794 comments Ann, I thought the same thing, and think it every time these characters (especially Rodriguez and Stine) appear on the scene. They are such caricatures.

.Ann wrote: "The dysfunction of this group is almost a caricature, especially the chief Rodriguez. .."


message 8: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 7794 comments LOL. Because it makes for better dramatic tension? ;-)

Ann wrote: "I think Sergeant Wigg could team with Dave and put all of this crazy evidence together and solve the case. Dave is so extremely capable when it comes to a crime to solve, he remembers details, makes sense of the impossible, so why can't he remember the dinner party and pecans for the dessert? ..."


message 9: by Donnajo (new)

Donnajo | 3480 comments Starting chapter 26. Thinking I might leave this book home and worry about finishing it next week if I was liking it I wouldn't mind taking it to the shore but I don't get much time to read when the kids are there ever though if I stay on Sunday when they all come north (niece is taking the kids to NYC with her old roommate to see a. Show and my sister and bil are babysitting).
This book seems to drag too much and maybe it's just I'm not in the mood for a book like this.
It's interesting but just not grabbing me


message 10: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14214 comments DJ: I think that it is a bit hard to identify with the MC, Dave - just when he seems to be the kind of cop we can look to for answers, he seems oddly combative or belittles the people around him by commenting about their weight or other traits he holds in contempt.
Donnajo wrote: "This book seems to drag too much and maybe it's just I'm not in the mood for a book like this.
It's interesting but just not grabbing me "



message 11: by Donnajo (new)

Donnajo | 3480 comments true I kept going back and forth with how I felt with the characters in this book.


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