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Q: What are some of the characteristics Archer possesses that makes him the protypical "private detective
A: Lew Archer is largely a cipher, rarely described, though in The Doomsters a sheriff mocks his 6'2" and blue eyes. [ As old failures plague him, we learn he once "took the strap away from my old man", that he was a troubled kid and petty thief redeemed by an old cop, that he sometimes drank too much, that his ex-wife's name is Sue, and he thinks of her often. His background is most thoroughly
explored in The Moving Target: he got his training with the Long Beach California Police Department, but left (Archer himself says he was "fired") after witnessing too much corruption, and during World War II, he served in military intelligence in the United States Army, again mentioned in The Doomsters. Archer is sometimes depressed, often world-weary. An almost Greek sense of tragedy pervades the novels as the sins of omission and crimes of sometimes-wealthy parents are frequently visited upon their children, young adults whom Archer tries desperately to save from disaster. Key incidents are typically separated by fifteen years, a scant generation, as evidence from old crimes surfaces to haunt new characters. As suspense in a novel builds toward a climax, Archer often gets little or no sleep, racing the clock and prowling the suburban Southern California landscape day after night after day, trying to put the pieces of a puzzle together in order to prevent new violence. ................. ]
Expert answered|sujaysen|Points 4610|
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Asked 7/4/2013 11:56:02 AM
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