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pen21
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

Piet using the library books to smuggle things into prison surprised me, but I think it does show how prepared Piet wants to be. The use of tulips is something I have not heard of before.

I have read about this use of a book before, the most prevalent being to hide a persons valuables in your home. I do suppose that thieves would not take the time to look through all the books I have. But it would be hard to pick a book to destroy in this way. Books are important to me.

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mommybooknerd
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

All I could think of when I was reading that part about hiding the gun and stuff in the books was how is it going to play out when he gets to jail and when that part came it blew my mind because it was amazing how that all worked out...don't want to spoil how those things came into play but holy cow is all I can say about that!

You are the author of your own life story.
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mommybooknerd
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

Plus I could not help but think how in the world did he come up with that as an idea..Genius...

You are the author of your own life story.
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Vermontcozy
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details


mommybooknerd wrote:

Plus I could not help but think how in the world did he come up with that as an idea..Genius...


Being a Crime novel.I try to think.What is Piet Thinking..We have reached a point in the book where we will be going into another world Prison..So many questions.. I will not  judge him,because this is all he has known.Hopefully he will be ok,if only for Zofia and His children...And be able to Start a new life..He certainly is smart enough....

Kindness,I've discovered,is everything in life...Issac Bashevis Singer
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elaine_hf
Posts: 389
Registered: ‎01-05-2010

Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

 


Rachel-K wrote:

Thought we could use a  slightly lighter thread for such an intense novel! I am struck by the level of detail we get about the nitty-gritty of the drug trade, from the bodily hiding of drugs and microphones to the use of tulips and (gasp) cutting up dusty book of poetry from the library!

 

Did you find any of the novel's details to be particularly disturbing or surprising? I don't want to think of Three Seconds as a useful instruction manual to a life of crime, but I was tremendously impressed by the ingeniously practical aspects of drug trade that I never would have thought of!

 

Another lighter question about the details of the novel: How do you find the details of ordinary life differ across an ocean? Are there things about daily life described in Stockholm that surprise you by their similarly or difference? What people eat for breakfast or the boy's nursery school?


 

Some of these things, I have to admit, made me smile! I belonged to a bookbinding group for a number of years, and we spent a little time talking about, and making, 'altered books'. Of course, one of the most popular means of altering books was the technique of hollowing out the inside to make a hidden cache spot! But how clever, to request unpopular, thick books and use them to his (Piet's) advantage! (A quick aside - our group leader found a very valuable diamond ring in one of those altered books that the whole family had been searching for after the owner, her aunt, passed away!)

 

I find it more interesting that they haven't, to this point, really dwelt on the technique of swallowing those rubber capsules full of amphetamine. Are we so jaded these days that we take for granted that everyone knows how miserable it must be to swallow, 'keep', and and then expel those things?!

 

And I confess to a guilty blush when they describe dropping sick but medicated kids off at daycare. Nothing to be proud of, but in desperate situations I might have indulged in something similar....Life may be different abroad, but people are people....

‎"Peculiar travel suggestions are dancing lessons from God." -Bokonon
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Passie71
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

WOW!  I am amazed at how intelligent some people are...i.e. using library books to hide drugs.  I wish people like this would use their intelligence for something useful.  Maybe balance the budget or cure some disease!

 

Some things are different and some things are the same.  I love to read and discover these "things".

Staci
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LorettaP
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

I think daily life in Stockholm is very similar to what we do here in the United States. Many daycares (nurserys) will not take children when they are running high temps and sick.

 

I was impressed as well by all of the thought and details that went into the drug trading. Hiding the amphetamine in tulips and in a book of poetry would have been something that I never would have thought of. It would be an understatement to say this book is a little disturbing due to the fact that some of this book came about by the writers inside knowledge into the world of crime. It makes you wonder how many things written in Three Seconds actually happen in real life. How many crimes go undiscovered?

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Sadie1
Posts: 74
Registered: ‎07-16-2009

Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details


Rachel-K wrote:

 

Did you find any of the novel's details to be particularly disturbing or surprising? I don't want to think of Three Seconds as a useful instruction manual to a life of crime, but I was tremendously impressed by the ingeniously practical aspects of drug trade that I never would have thought of!

 

Another lighter question about the details of the novel: How do you find the details of ordinary life differ across an ocean? Are there things about daily life described in Stockholm that surprise you by their similarly or difference? What people eat for breakfast or the boy's nursery school?


I didn't find any of the details to be an instruction manual.  These idea's have been used for a long time in the drug trade.  They are really being used today even in the state's and I have known of them since the 70's.

 

Here in the states, the mule usually has a bowel movement to get the swallowed drugs out.  They aren't beaten and made to throw them up.  This was new to me.

 

Also, many parents here in the states used to give their children paragoric to make them sleep.  This is why paragoric is no longer regularly available to parents from pediatricians.

 

Drug addicts and criminals don't actually see the harm they bring to all around them. 

 

This book is chocked full of real life in the crime/drug trade.

 

Lisa in Georgia

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lisapt
Posts: 15
Registered: ‎10-19-2006

Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

I'm amazed at the company of Piet in all that it does. It raised the tension too, because I keep thinking of how easy it would be for just one part to fall apart. What if, for example, the librarian riffles through the pages of the books before putting them back in storage? Or wonders at the request from the prison being the same as the man who came in recently?
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shortshellie
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

I still can not get beyond the fact they have to throw all that up just to get to the drugs. I would not want to put my hands in that even with gloves on. Can't believe people would do that in real life either, but I guess they do. I am having a hard time following the story. It seems to keep jumping from one scene to the next. Hope it gets better the farther I read.

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Peppermill
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

 


lisapt wrote:
I'm amazed at the company of Piet in all that it does. It raised the tension too, because I keep thinking of how easy it would be for just one part to fall apart. What if, for example, the librarian riffles through the pages of the books before putting them back in storage? Or wonders at the request from the prison being the same as the man who came in recently?

Those were very much my questions, too, Lisa, although I am not certain he had the same name in jail as he had when checking out the books.  Still, the coincidence of the same group of seldom borrowed books being requested, quickly returned, and then requested so soon again seems risky and unlike Piet's other meticulous precautions, even if the library were a large one.

 

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
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mystery-woman
Posts: 12
Registered: ‎04-02-2010

Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

I must say, that very little shocks and amazes me anymore.  I have read so many books and heard too many stories passed down, that very few things that people do tend to surprise me.  It does amaze me though, how Piet smuggled things in the library books.  After reading the passage on how he cut through the books and inserted things, absolutely astounds me.  I am a librarian and I keep looking at books thinking, "Can it be done?"  I am not sure whether something like this can truly happen or not.  How, if done, could no one notice?  The guards looked through the books.  It is very hard for me to believe or understand.  As for smuggling in the bodies of people, it does not surprise me.  The careful attention to detail without  going overboard with description in this book is wonderful.

 

It seems to me that some things are very similar to our daily life in the US are the same as Sweden.  I had an exchange student from Sweden live with my family for a few months and in talking to her all those years ago, I found that parenting was far different in Sweden.  I haven't seen this aspect in the book.  It may not be that way anymore, that was 30 years ago.  I have a hard time believing that life is that much different in Sweden. I believe they eat a little better than we do, but maybe not.

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BookWoman718
Posts: 220
Registered: ‎01-28-2007

Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details


MSaff wrote:

 

  Now let's talk about the destruction of a good book.  How anyone could do that is beyond me.  Literature, is for reading and enjoying, not for again hiding contraband. 

 


Well, I sure try hard to swap, give away, or tenderly treasure my books, but there are practical limits.  Piet had chosen books that hadn't been taken out of the library in years, so they weren't doing anyone else any good.  Much as we book-lovers hate to think about it, there are boatloads of books that must be disposed of every year, from all kinds of sources.  We just don't need all the copies that are printed.  If I somehow learned that a certain way of carving up an old book could possibly save my life when I'm going to be in extreme danger, you would see me getting out the glue and craft knife quicker than a Girl Scout leader with a room full of over-excited 5th graders. 

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BookWoman718
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

 
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BookWoman718
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details


 

And I confess to a guilty blush when they describe dropping sick but medicated kids off at daycare. Nothing to be proud of, but in desperate situations I might have indulged in something similar....Life may be different abroad, but people are people....


In this age of comparing "parenting skills" more viciously than paychecks or dinner party successes, I take my hat off to your honesty!   Who ever dares to admit anymore that they have acted in any other but a completely self-sacrificing manner?   I think if you talk to any daycare workers, or kindergarten teachers, though, you would find you (if indeed you actually DID the dastardly deed) were hardly alone.   Personally, since Piet is in a life or death situation, needing to complete preparations that only he can do, I think we have to cut him a little slack.  Would his kids really be better off if he sat at bedside with them, and then ended up dead?  Or think of it this way,  you live on a barrier island, and a hurricane is coming.  Your child is sick.  Do you stay by his side, or do you bundle him in the car, make your way to someplace inland, and put up the hurricane shutters? 

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tamarindo
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎11-03-2010

Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

I never would have guessed that tulips could be used to conceal and transport drugs.  How clever and creative to use the fact that you can trick the buds into opening or closing by adjusting the temperature. 

 

I'd seen hollowed-out books being used to conceal revolvers before in the movies, but still - reading about the meticulous process Piet had to follow in order for it to be a success was fascinating.  I still can't believe that those altered books weren't discovered by the inspecting guards, especially after shaking the books by the spine!

 

And that mini-pistol.  I had no idea such a thing existed, and that it could be fully functional, complete w/ mini bullets!  I just saw the photo that another member posted, and while I knew it was a miniature when reading about it in the novel, looking at that photo and seeing just how tiny that thing was makes me even more surprised that something so small could inflict injury.  But even before that, I'm surprised that someone would take that mini weapon seriously.  If you were at the bank, and someone pulled that mini pistol out, pointed it at you and yelled at you to hand over your money, what would you do?  I think I'd be scared just by the yelling and by the fact that someone was trying to rob me.  But at the same time, I'd take one look at that mini pistol and wonder if I were part of some surreal SNL sketch.  Having said that, though, I don't think I'd want to tempt fate and call the robber's bluff.

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DawnGR
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

I would say definitely the details of the drug trade got me. I am not sure I see it as a manual to drug trafficking or any criminal behavior. You find in many novels such vivid descriptions of things such as murder,rape, and in this case drugs. Unfortunately often an author has to be so descriptive to give the reader the a picture of the attitude, direction, feel,  and situation of a story. not that it is something that is comfortable to read often, but I think we can ask , if it would be less descriptive in how the drug trade happens in this story would it make it boring, hard to follow, and not interesting. I think Authors really have a hard job to please the reader.

“The greatest gift is a passion for reading. It is cheap, it consoles, it distracts, it excites, it gives you knowledge of the world and experience of a wide kind. It is a moral illumination.”
Elizabeth Hardwick

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Sanderson1216
Posts: 16
Registered: ‎01-20-2010

Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

The improper use of library materials justifies the use of more ebooks!  :smileyembarrassed:)  Although I guess someone would learn to hide drugs in a Nook. 

 

Seriously, I found some of the descriptions distrubing, but at the same time, it was interesting. 

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dhaupt
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details

[ Edited ]

 


Sanderson1216 wrote:

The improper use of library materials justifies the use of more ebooks!  :smileyembarrassed:)  Although I guess someone would learn to hide drugs in a Nook. 

 

 

Loved this :-)

 

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Vermontcozy
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Re: Improper use of Library Materials and other Details


Sanderson1216 wrote:

The improper use of library materials justifies the use of more ebooks!  :smileyembarrassed:)  Although I guess someone would learn to hide drugs in a Nook. 

 

Seriously, I found some of the descriptions distrubing, but at the same time, it was interesting. 


Oh Sanderson1216 ,Thinking outside The Box Again..very Clever...Very Disturbing    so  much a part of Life all over the world......I like that Anders and Borge hold nothing back,  we are faced with the reality..of the inner working's,so secretive,so many embedded  in that world......Susan

Kindness,I've discovered,is everything in life...Issac Bashevis Singer