59 pages 1 hour read

Markus Zusak

I Am The Messenger

Fiction | Novel | YA | Published in 2002

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Part 5, Chapters 53-57

Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Part 5: “The Joker”

Part 5, Chapter 53 Summary: “The Laughter”

Ed’s address is written on the joker, and he imagines that the clown on the card is laughing at him. As he stands in his yard, he feels more “vulnerable” and “scrutinized” than ever before even though he’s long been aware that he’s being watched and followed (341). He fears that there may already be someone waiting for him inside his home, but he finds no one except the Doorman when he searches the house.

During the next three days, Ed numbly goes through the motions of his life. He doesn’t talk to his passengers, dispensing with the “disposable conversational crap that fills the void inside a taxicab” (342). On the third day, Ed is so distracted that he nearly crashes into a van. When he brakes abruptly, the joker flutters off the passenger seat to the floor, and Ed imagines that the card is laughing at him again.

Part 5, Chapter 54 Summary: “The Weeks”

The weeks stretch on as Ed waits in suspense for someone to come to his home at 26 Shipping Street. On February 7, Audrey visits him. She and Marv are worried about Ed because he’s been quiet and withdrawn lately. Ed shows her the joker and begs her to tell him that she sent the cards so that he would “help people” and “[m]ake [him]self better—make [him] worth something” (344).