Alexander McCall Smith

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What might be the impact of the writer's death on the characters in "No Place to Park" by Alexander McCall Smith?

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There are five characters in "No Place to Park" who might be significantly affected by the writer, George's death. The first such character is George's girlfriend, Frizzie. The second is the brother of the person who George was due to testify against at the murder trial. The third and fourth...

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are the two men in the car, who drove away from the dead body. The fifth is the parking officer who, alongside George, saw the two men in the car.

It is heavily implied within the story that Frizzie is an accomplice to George's murder. Only Frizzie knows about an idea that George had for a story, whereby a murder would be staged to look like a shark attack. George is murdered in just this way. Frizzie is friends, or possibly more than friends, with the brother of one of the men in the car, and the suggestion is that she deliberately gives George's shark attack idea to her friend so that her friend can stop George from testifying against his brother. With this in mind, Frizzie is likely to feel a mixture of conflicting emotions after George's death. She will likely feel very guilty, but she will also possibly feel relieved that her friend's brother may now avoid being convicted as a murderer.

The brother of the person who George is called to testify against threatens George, and tells him to "watch [his] back" should he decide to testify against his brother. This person will thus feel relieved after George's death because his brother now has a better chance of being found innocent. Given the aforementioned threat, this person is also probably the murderer and so will perhaps be feeling anxious as to whether or not he will get away with the murder.

The two people in the car, who are the murder suspects in the trial, will more than likely feel relieved after George's death. As mentioned above, they now have a much better chance of being found innocent.

The fifth and final person to be affected by George's death is the parking officer who also saw the two men in the car. If the parking officer is at all suspicious, he may now be very worried for his own life. Indeed, he has probably also been called to testify against the two men.

In terms of what might happen next, after the end of the story, there seem to be two possibilities. The first possibility is that the murder is mistaken for a shark attack, and the second possibility is that something alerts the police to the fact that it was not a shark attack after all. If the murder is mistaken for a shark attack, then perhaps the murderer will try to kill the parking officer, too, to remove another witness who might testify against the men in the car. If the murder is not mistaken for a shark attack, then perhaps the next part of the story would focus on the attempts of the murderer to evade capture.

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