I've read the occasional wistful lament that the advent of cell phones deprived suspense writers of that old stand-by: the hero's desperate search for a telephone so he can make the call that will save the world, the day, or his own life.
I never worried too much, though, because I had faith that crime writers would put the replacement technologies to good literary use, and so they have. One newish suspense-builder takes advantage of the anonymity of text messages: Is that message really from the person it purports to be from?
I've seen that one in a couple of novels recently, and it could be on its way to cliché status as we speak.
The phone booth is out, the text message is in. What other formerly popular suspense-building devices have been rendered technologically obsolete? What newer ones have replaced them — or are good candidates to do so?
© Peter Rozovsky 2010