Detective story discussion The Gatewood Caper by Dashiell Hammett.

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Detective story discussion The Gatewood Caper by Dashiell Hammett. " The Gatewood Caper" --------------------- " The Gatewood Caper" by Dashiell Hammett is not just an exciting detective story; its characters are real and fascinating people who are just as believable now as when they were first created. ------------------------------------------------------------------- " The Gatewood Caper" is a detective story written by the writer Dashiell Hammett. It was written and set during the 1920s in San Francisco, Los Angeles, in an aristocratic setting. Harvey Gatewood is a rich businessman who finds out, his daughter Audrey has been kidnapped. He calls and hires a detective, the detective tells Mr Gatewood to pay the ransom. However Audrey doesn't return after the money has been paid and the detective grows suspicious that something is not quite right. He then goes in search of Audrey and finds her in an apartment with a man. Audrey begins to shoot at the detective through the door, but in the end both her and the man give up. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- " The Gatewood Caper" certainly is an exciting detective story. The writer has us guessing all through the story about who has kidnapped Audrey and wondering whom the villain could be. The detective in this story was only in the detective business for the money but he still used his observations and cunning to track Audrey down. --------------------------------------------------------------------- Good and evil were not easy to spot in this story as the theme was not as expected, the writer kept you guessing from beginning to end, not a typical detective story. I found that the story moved very fast and got to the point quicker than most, which held my interest as I knew it wouldn't be long till the conclusion. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Some parts of the story were unconvincing. I would have expected a villain, a heroine, and someone to get their just desserts in any other detective story but I found the ending a bit of a let down when I found out Audrey had kidnapped herself to punish her father. Although I did feel sorry for Audrey as her father was a bully as Hammett writes " He was a big bruiser of a man, something over 200 pounds of hard red flesh and a czar from the top of his bullet to the toes of his shoes." From this description we can understand why Audrey has a problem with her father, especially when he lost his temper what could she do with a man with that physique. Audrey was both victim and villain in this story, which was unexpected. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- However, Hammett puts as much skill into characterisation as he does into plot and suspense.

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