The Tommy Times

The Case of the Deadly Desperados By Caroline Lawrence

An Abundance Of Mysterious And Gripping Characters Make The Case of the Deadly Desperados A Quick And Easy Read!

Twelve-year-old P.K. Pinkerton comes home from school one day to find his parents dead and covered with blood on the kitchen floor. He hides in his kitchen in fear of the murderers returning, and they do! It was a gang of Deadly Desperados lead by evil Whittlin’ Walt. P.K. finds out they are after something, and he immediately knows what!

The characters in The Case of the Deadly Desperados are a big part in this book. There was only one character in this book that is honest to P.K. and stays that way, and that is Poker Face Jace, someone who taught P.K. a heck of a lot, and stayed loyal. Tons of greedy people in Virginia City tricked this poor little boy. Especially Belle Donne. She is the evil hurdy gurdy girl who tricked P.K. into thinking she was good. Given the chance, she would have killed P.K. for personal gain. Although these mysterious characters are truly evil, they are also very interesting. The plot is based around P.K. escaping the Desperados chasing him, and then eventually going to Chicago to be part of his Uncle's spy company. The Desperados are after a piece of paper that will grant the owner a really nice house in Virginia City. This is definitely a character vs. character type of conflict. P.K. is constantly dealing with untrustworthy people. The biggest thing is that the whole story is based around P.K. trying to escape an evil Desperado. Meanwhile, P.K. is trying to keep hold of this precious document.

When P.K. is faced with sudden death in an unoccupied mineshaft and all hope is lost, the antagonist finds P.K. to make things just so much better. (Seriously). Whittlin’ Walt has found P.K. and chased P.K. down through Virginia City. P.K. escapes into an unused mine shaft and can’t get out. He is going to die of starvation when who else but Whittlin’ Walt comes down to kill P.K. He is prepared though. He brakes Walt’s hand with a sledgehammer weakening him. But then Walt gains control, shoots P.K. once in the shoulder and then gets ready to shoot him a second time. Instead Walt steps into a bottomless pit and is never seen again. Poker Face Jace finds P.K. and gets him out. And at the end he decides not to go to Chicago, but to stay in Virginia City, in the lovely house he received from the document everyone was after.

THE CASE OF THE DEADLY DESPERADOS is filled with evil characters trying to trick this poor little boy. Throughout the story only one character is loyal to P.K.

A character trait

Poker Face Jace runs into P.K. one day and teaches him everything he ever needed to know. P.K. has a problem; he can’t read or show emotions. Poker Face Jace teaches P.K. how to read people's body language, and how to know exactly what they’re feeling. So P.K. does Poker Face Jace a favor. They stay loyal to each other the whole story. Poker Face Jace is loyal to P.K. On page 252 he comes down to find P.K. in the mineshaft, because he is loyal, and he cares about P.K. He says “P.K.? P.K., are you down here?”


1). This is what a sign from the book on page 162 stated: “A notice at the bottom said, Virginia City, Nevada Territory, 1861. PUBLISHED BY GRAFTON T BROWN.
This gives the exact date and place. However, back in that time period there was a “Nevada Territory. This is because they had not really developed states in the west, they were just Territories. Now a days, there is no Nevada Territory.

2). On Page 35, a woman says, “You often see men shooting at each other right out in the open. But they don’t mean nothing by it. It’s just that people drink a lot of liquor here in Virginia and everyone carries a gun.”
In modern day, everyone does not carry a gun wherever they go, and it is extremely rare to see random shootings out in the open. Back then they did not have very many laws to enforce things like this to not happen.

3). On page 89, a man gives a child a gun and says, “That is a Smith and Wesson’s number one seven-shooter.” Smith and Wesson’s number one seven-shooter’s are outdated and very inaccurate. They were really only used during that time period.

Story Place in Time

1. South Carolina secedes from the US including Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas. These states plus four more would create The Confederate States of America. (January 1861)

2. President Abraham Lincoln is assassinated. (April-July 1865)

3. Thomas Edison successfully lights the first light bulb. (October 22 1879)

4. World war II began (1939)

5. The first video game to reach mainstream popularity was released by Atari. It was called Pong. (1972)

6. Apple introduced the first I-pod. (October 23 2001

7. Barack Obama is the first African American President. (2008) He is reelected in 2012

Turning Points

1.) After a couple of days of helping P.K., Belle Donne turns on P.K. and ties him up. She draws a gun on him and demands the letter. This is the loss of a helpful character to P.K., but she is not helpful anymore.

2.) P.K. runs into Poker Face Jace on the streets. At first P.K. is scared of Jace. But Jace turns out to be the nicest character in the book to P.K. He teaches P.K. everything he needed to know.

3.) P.K. is chased into a mine shaft by Whittlin’ Walt. There he almost meets his death, but that is also where the climax takes place.

(Pictures are in order with captions)

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