121 pages 4 hours read

Louise Erdrich

The Night Watchman

Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 2020

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Chapter 86-EpilogueChapter Summaries & Analyses

Chapter 86 Summary: “Tosca”

Valentine breaks up with Barnes, and he goes home to listen to an opera record.

Chapter 87 Summary: “The Salisbury”

Patrice is the only one allowed in Thomas’s hospital room since she is a relative. She speaks in her mother’s language as he sleeps. Eventually, she goes with Millie to her apartment to get some rest. While they talk, Patrice asks if she has a boyfriend. Millie says no and asks her the same question. Patrice says that she’s been thinking of Wood Mountain, and Millie says she’s beautiful but doesn’t really understand why.

Patrice then suggests that she adopt Millie once Vera returns. Millie agrees, but, for some reason, she feels “unsettled and left wanting by what Patrice had offered. It was as if a marvelous design had flashed before her, and disintegrated, before she could grasp the figures it conveyed” (415).

Chapter 88 Summary: “The Lake, the Well, the Crickets Singing in the Grass”

Thomas drifts in and out of consciousness. As he dreams, he thinks of how Patrice swam to his boat after her encounter with Bucky. He knows what happened and would have beaten up the boy if Bucky’s face had not physically changed due to an unknown condition.

He feels like he is in the bottom of a well, remembering his time digging one on the reservation.

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