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Tony and Susan Summary & Study Guide

Austin Wright
This Study Guide consists of approximately 40 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Tony and Susan.
This section contains 540 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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Tony and Susan Summary & Study Guide Description

Tony and Susan Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Quotes and a Free Quiz on Tony and Susan by Austin Wright.

Note: This study guide specifically refers to the November 2016 Grand Central Publishing trade paperback edition of Tony & Susan by Austin Wright.

Tony & Susan is a literary thriller mystery by Austin Wright in which Susan reads the manuscript Nocturnal Animals, written by her ex-husband Edward, in which a man named Tony seeks revenge against the three men who raped and killed his wife and teenage daughter. Tony & Susan flashes back and forth between chapters of Nocturnal Animals, and Susan’s life, thoughts, and reflections on the past –especially with Edward and how she came to marry her second husband, Arnold, with whom she has three children.

When the novel begins, Susan receives the manuscript in the mail from Edward, who has been attempting for years to be a writer without commercial success. Susan has not heard from Edward in years, so she is very intrigued as to why he would want her to read the manuscript. She commits. Nocturnal Animals has a very simple premise: mild-mannered mathematics professor Tony, his wife, Laura, and their daughter, Helen, are on the way through northern Pennsylvania to their summer house in Maine. Three thugs –Ray, Turk, and Lou –play a game of cat-and-mouse with Tony late at night on the road and end up forcing him off the road. They then separate Tony from his wife and daughter, dropping off Tony in the middle of the woods while they rape and murder Laura and Helen. Tony attempts to find them, but hides from Ray when he comes back looking to kill Tony.

Tony is devastated by the loss of Laura and Helen, but with help from Bob Andes of the State Police, spends the next year searching for and building up a case against the three thugs. The three men later push their luck in a shootout with police during a botched supermarket robbery. Turk is killed, Lou is captured, and Ray escapes. Based on Tony’s identification of Ray, Ray is arrested. While there is sufficient evidence against Lou for the murders, not enough can be found on Ray. Andes and Tony take the law into their own hands. Andes kills Lou while Tony tracks down Ray. In a fight, Tony manages to shoot and kill Ray, but also accidentally shoots himself. Tony ultimately bleeds to death waiting to be found by the police.

Susan is startled by her reading of the novel, because it has forced her to rethink her own life. She thinks about the lines between reality and fiction, and realizes just how much of himself Edward has put into the novel especially the character of Tony. She also thinks about how she has invented a story about her past to ease her guilt in the present. She cheated on Edward with Arnold, but convinced herself that her misstep was because of Edward’s struggling career. The novel has unsettled Susan to such an extent that she cannot relax. When Edward stands her up for a dinner over which they are presumably to discuss the manuscript, Susan is annoyed. To seek revenge, she writes him a letter saying that if Edward wants to know what she thinks of the novel, he will have to ask her.

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This section contains 540 words
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