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Peppermill
Posts: 6,768
Registered: ‎04-04-2007
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Re: Three Seconds: Part Three

 


JaneM wrote:

Peppermill wrote:

 


JaneM wrote:

 To all who wondered about where Erik was during Piet's time in prison, it says on p. 262 that Piet knew "Erik Wilson wasn't there, he knew he was away in the United States, at some course in the south-east, during the period that they were not going to have any contact."  The plan was that once Piet went into isolation, it would take a week to sort out the papers and get him out.  Of course, the whole plan had escalated, which accounts for why Erik didn't answer the phone.


which accounts for why Erik didn't answer the phone.

 

 

? I don't understand this comment.  Which phone, when?


Erik thought he had a week in Georgia before Piet would need him again.  But Piet called earlier when he demanded to call the police, didn't he?  Or maybe he was just calling the other police officials who were supposed to bail him out.


 

Are you talking about the call on p. 275?  I can't tell who that first call is to, but I would presume only the buried cell phone could connect with Wilson's matched phone, unless Piet had some independent knowledge of the number.

 

Then, there are the calls from the workroom on p. 350, including the one to Grens.  But, Piet couldn't have known ahead of time that Grens would be the gold commander who would order the shooting.

 

Later, Hermansson reports two phone calls.  See p. 387, p.426.

 

Does Grens break into the county police commissioner's office to get his computer?  Who is that, Pal Larson, or Goransson?  I am confused on titles. pp. 412-413.

"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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elaine_hf
Posts: 389
Registered: ‎01-05-2010
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Re: Three Seconds: Part Three

 


fordmg wrote:

elaine_hf wrote:

 


Peppermill wrote:

Elaine_hf wrote (excerpt):  I think that Piet trusted Grens because he found out that Grens was coming to interview him while he (Piet) was in prison, and was turned away. He probably had to make a quick judgment call on this one, and perhaps came to the conclusion that Grens wasn't involved in 'burning' him because he wanted to come to the prison and talk.

 

I thought Piet addressed the envelope with the recording to Grens before he even went to jail and had Zofia simply retrieve and mail it.  Or do I need to go re-read?

 

Pepper


Hmmm, I think I'll go back and re-read it too. I really can't imagine Piet singling out Grens prior to prison - unless I missed something, I don't recall their paths crossing. I know Piet put everything into an envelope, but I don't recall that he addressed it. I perhaps made an erroneous assumption when I thought that Piet had given Zofia instructions over the phone regarding the disposition of the envelope. 

 


I think Piet knew from the start that this job would include 'dirty' cops and Wilson said Grens was the onle he could trust.  That is why Wilson kept asking Piet - You can always back out, you still have time.   It was so dangerous because he was fighting the drug scene and the police.

MG


 

Well, Pepper, you are so right! So many little details in this book!! On page 394, Grens finds the padded envelope: "His name and address were easy to read, a man's handwriting,..."  - which implies, of course, that Piet pre-addressed it to Grens.

 

Now I need to re-think how Piet knew of Grens, and why he would trust him, prior to being put in prison. 

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Peppermill
Posts: 6,768
Registered: ‎04-04-2007
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Re: Three Seconds: Part Three

 


elaine_hf wrote:

 


fordmg wrote:

elaine_hf wrote:

 


Peppermill wrote:

Elaine_hf wrote (excerpt):  I think that Piet trusted Grens because he found out that Grens was coming to interview him while he (Piet) was in prison, and was turned away. He probably had to make a quick judgment call on this one, and perhaps came to the conclusion that Grens wasn't involved in 'burning' him because he wanted to come to the prison and talk.

 

I thought Piet addressed the envelope with the recording to Grens before he even went to jail and had Zofia simply retrieve and mail it.  Or do I need to go re-read?

 

Pepper


Hmmm, I think I'll go back and re-read it too. I really can't imagine Piet singling out Grens prior to prison - unless I missed something, I don't recall their paths crossing. I know Piet put everything into an envelope, but I don't recall that he addressed it. I perhaps made an erroneous assumption when I thought that Piet had given Zofia instructions over the phone regarding the disposition of the envelope. 

 


I think Piet knew from the start that this job would include 'dirty' cops and Wilson said Grens was the onle he could trust.  That is why Wilson kept asking Piet - You can always back out, you still have time.   It was so dangerous because he was fighting the drug scene and the police.

MG


 

Well, Pepper, you are so right! So many little details in this book!! On page 394, Grens finds the padded envelope: "His name and address were easy to read, a man's handwriting,..."  - which implies, of course, that Piet pre-addressed it to Grens.

 

Now I need to re-think how Piet knew of Grens, and why he would trust him, prior to being put in prison. 


Thanks for that citation, Elaine.  I mentioned p. 169ff earlier, where Hugo starts to recognize Ewert's name on the brown envelope.

 

 

My hypothesis is that Piet was pretty savvy and knowledgable about the members of the police force in the organization he was closest to -- sort of a self-protection measure.  But, I think your question is a good one, for which I didn't catch a lot of textual evidence.

 

Pepper

"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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ruthieWW
Posts: 27
Registered: ‎01-07-2010
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Re: Three Seconds: Part Three

Piet's plans for entering the prison scene worked out as scheduled, with no surprises. He carefully orchestrated his movements. He was not as fortunate at getting out.

 

He tried to fit in with inmates, officials, even became the drug dealer, moving the competitors out of the main light. He made progress, just as he intended. When things go wrong, we get a glimpse of the danger he is in.

 

To judge Piet's character, without knowing his alternate life, is difficult. On the surface, he could be judged as very intelligent, very perspective; but very evil...a violent, hard-hearted criminal.

 

Grens is a contribution to the force, he continues to believe in the justice system. He goes by the book, careful of details and tries to do what is right.

 

He visits the cemetery, trying to cope with his wife's death. It is a source of constant struggle with him and he attempts to come to terms with his pain.

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flouncyninja
Posts: 78
Registered: ‎09-14-2009

Re: Three Seconds: Part Three

Slowly but surely wading my way through this book between moving and Christmas.  I've really wanted to sit down and dive in, especially as the suspense grew around Piet breaking out of prison, but I just haven't found the time to devote to this intriguing novel.

 

I'm surprised that Erik has all but disappeared.  He mentioned going back to the states, but you'd think someone would alert him to what's happening.  Then again, the bigwigs probably know that he would put up a fight on Piet's behalf and don't want to added trouble.

 

Despite having killed two and threatened the lives of others, I still can't see Piet as an all-bad guy.  He told the old guard where to stay in order to remain safe from the explosion.  He hasn't hurt anyone that wasn't another inmate with the exception of the prison warden, and that was only a means for self-preservation.  Above all though, Piet is smart.  I'm still not sure how all his plans are going to work out because I don't think this is a suicide mission, but I don't know how he's goin to get out and reunited with Zofia (who appears to believe him and following his requests) and the kids.

 

Ewert is growing on me.  He seems to be the most reliable and stable of all the characters, which is saying something since he seems to be in the midst of a deep depression involving his wife.  I think at this point he's the only possibly option of saving Piet's life, once Ewert knows the truth.

 

 


Rachel-K wrote: 
In what ways were Piet Hoffmann's plans for entering prison working out exactly as he'd organized them?
He knew his rights and he demanded that they be respected.  Piet is so smart and I have to respect him for that.  He came fully prepared to fight his way out of there if he was burned.  I feel bad for him and wish things hadn't come to this, that Erik could swoop in and save him, but I have to respect that he's planned everything out, predicted all the moves the police would make up to this point, and only harmed two violent fellow inmates.  While his violence probably crosses a line for many readers, I can see that he still has moral boundaries, though as he'd said before, everyone ends up breaking their own moral code some time.
 
What was life in prison like and how did Piet fit in there?
He fit in great until the secretary of state and head of police set him up to get attacked.  He was a big wig; people respected and followed him.  He had strategies that were working out and managed to take over in a matter of days.  He fit in well because he planned well and knew how that world worked.
What interferes with his carefully orchestrated plans?
The government can't be trusted!  It makes me so angry that they burned him because they wouldn't explain to a cop that Piet was an informant.  Instead of diplomatically working around things from within the station itself, they more or less sentenced a (mostly innocent) man to a brutal death sentence.
 
How would you judge Piet as a man in these chapters if you'd had no picture of his life outside the prison walls before this?
 
Smart and violent, just like his faked identity in the police records make him out to be.  He looks like a violent criminal, out for only himself.  It just so happens that he's a very sneaky, smart criminal, which are probably the worst kind.  The fact that we can see inside his head makes it harder for him to be defined in such clear cut ways.
We spend quite a lot of time in these chapters observing Ewert Grens. How does he compare to the other officers he works with and for?
He thinks and has compassion.  He doesn't want to be responsible for anyone's death, criminal or not, but if he has to choose between the life of a guard and the life of a violent criminal, it's a fairly clear choice.  Even so, he wants to sniper to maim Piet, not kill him, which turns out not to be possible.  He follows protocol and wants as clean of a conclusion as possible.  I respect him and wish we had a better picture of Erik to compare him to.  Instead we only have the police chief who Ewert doesn't get along with for good reason - the police chief is a dick.
 
Why do you think Grens detects something wrong about the stories he's being given by police and prison officials?
 
Things aren't adding up.  With all the details, Piet's actions aren't those of a violent criminal out for self-preservation.  The gun license, the calculated hostage taking, the lies being told to him by the prison warden, the game he's playing from the workshop...  Nothing fits into what a normal hostage situation would look like in prison.  There's no logical (or illogical for that matter) reason for Piet to be doing what he's doing, from Ewert's perspective, and everyone is just acting weird.
Why does Grens attempt to go the cemetery twice in these chapters? Can you describe his struggle?
 
He needs to visit his wife's grave.  He needs it in order to move on and possibly move past the grief that's dragging his feet down.  Perhaps he could think more clearly and this entire situation would make more sense if only he weren't distracted by his grief.  In the end though, he's not ready to let go and he can't bring himself to make it to the gravesite.
 

 

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charlieasu
Posts: 9
Registered: ‎11-03-2010
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Re: Three Seconds: Part Three

It took me awhile to get things done wih the holidays, but I finally made it!

 

I have to agree with you about Wilson. I'm so confused with him! I can't even completely put it into words.

 

The only way that I can see that Piet would be willing to give his life up with his wife and sons is that he was worried about them and concerned for their well-being in the end.

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