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"A Cold Day In Paradise" And "W Inter On The Wolf Moon" By Alex Mc Knight.

1970 words - 8 pages

Life is a journey not a destination. On the road of life adversity teaches the most valuable lessons. The emotional outcome of one's choices always carries a heavy burden; guilt exists a common feeling. "How unhappy is he who cannot forgive himself" (Syrus 48). Guilt causes a multitude of different reactions. In Steve Hamilton's novel and its sequel, A Cold Day in Paradise and Winter of the Wolf Moon, unresolved guilt burdens the protagonist. Despite countless efforts to overcome this guilt, he inevitably ends up in trouble with the law. In both novels, the protagonist, Alex McKnight displays a guilty conscience by over-indulging in investigations, which eventually casts suspicion on him until the truth appears.Throughout both novels, Alex McKnight appears affected by his unresolved guilt. In A Cold Day in Paradise, McKnight's guilt emerges perceivable from the beginning of the story, witnessing the tragic shooting of his partner, Franklin, at a crime scene in Detroit leaves Alex suffering. "After Franklin was killed, I decided to trade in my badge for a much safer profession" (Hamilton 5). Alex, unable to find forgiveness, beats himself up for not protecting Franklin resulting in heavy guilt. Chief Maven reinforces this guilt when he comments to McKnight: "Geez McKnight why didn't you go for your weapon when he first drew on you" (90). McKnight cannot handle the heavy emotional drains of guilt, in which the only way ofdealing comes to alienating himself from the situation. "I needed to close my eyes and not see Franklin on the floor next to me...I found the pills in the back of my medicine cabinet, I took one, and then another" (22). Although he successfully attempts to suppress his guilt, the sight of blood triggers flashbacks. The blood unlocks this unforgettable memory. "I tried to stop the next image from coming into my mind, but I could not. I saw blood again. A vast shivering red lake of blood" (21). Filled with an oppressing guilt, McKnight tries to run away from his problems. "I could no longer stay in Detroit...I wanted to move somewhere where I would not be reminded of Franklin" (8). Alex moves up north to a small town where he feels he will escape the crimes of the big city.McKnight's feelings of guilt also relate likewise in the sequel, Winter of the Wolf Moon. Dorothy Parrish pleads for freedom from her drug addicted boyfriend which sends Alex on a mission. "Alex you've got to help me...He gets abusive when he gets his hands on drugs." (43). He becomes determined to help her, feeling that by accepting Dorothy's request, he can save her life and resolve his own guilt. "It surprised me how much I wanted to help this woman. Maybe it was a chance to show myself I could do something right after all the mistakes I had made within the past year" (52). All seems well until Dorothy goes missing; Alex notices the cabin she inhabited, has been ransacked, ravaged and pulverized. McKnight's newly built self confidence, now lost, makes him feel...

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