Black Light (novel)

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Black Light
Black Light Stephen Hunter.jpg
Author Stephen Hunter
Country United States
Language English
Series Bob Lee Swagger series
Genre Thriller
Publisher Island Books
Publication date
April 7, 1997
Media type Print (Hardback & Paperback)
Pages 461 pp
ISBN ISBN 0-385-48042-3 (hardback edition)
OCLC 33404018
813/.54 20
LC Class PS3558.U494 B53 1996
Preceded by Point of Impact
Followed by Time to Hunt

Black Light is the second book in the Bob Lee Swagger series, by Stephen Hunter.

Plot summary[edit]

There are two interconnected plots that unfold simultaneously in this novel; one is set in the present, and deals with Bob Lee Swagger and Russ Pewtie, while the other is set in 1955, and deals with Bob Lee's father, Earl, and the events leading up to his death.

This book catches the reader up with Bob Lee about five years after the events in Point of Impact. He now has a daughter who is four years old, named Nikki, and he has married Julie Fenn, the widow of his fallen spotter, Donnie Fenn. He is living happily, if not humbly, in Arizona, trying to avoid the notoriety he gained during the events in Point of Impact.

A young man approaches him with a proposition. This young man's name is Russ Pewtie, the grown son of Bud Pewtie, who as described in Dirty White Boys was responsible for the death of Lamar Pye. Russ is a writer, and wants to write a book about Bob Lee's father, who was gunned down one night in 1955, near Bob's home town of Blue Eye, Arkansas, by Lamar's father, Jimmy.

As Russ and Bob Lee probe into the details surrounding Earl's death, there are some startling revelations, including a conspiracy to keep these details hidden, which give deeper insight into the history of Bob Lee.

The plot involves several of Hunter's signature interconnecting characters (who appear in various roles in more than one of his novels). These include Sam Vincent, the former Polk County prosecutor who appears in Point of Impact, and Frenchy Short, the CIA agent and Earl Swagger protégé who appears in The Second Saladin, and also in the later Earl Swagger novels Hot Springs and Havana.

Part of the connection between the novel's two time periods is the role of Sam Vincent in the prosecution of the murderer of a young black girl in 1955, and the re-investigation of that case in the present.