Follow TV Tropes


Literature / Thr3e

Go To

Enter a world where nothing is what it seems. Where your closest friend could be your worst enemy. Where black is white and white is black.

Thr3e is a novel by Ted Dekker written in September 2003, with a film adaptation released in late 2006 (early 2007 in America).

Kevin Parson, a young seminary student, gets a phone call from a man named Slater, who tells Kevin that if he doesn't confess his sin to the world in the next three minutes, his car will be blown sky high. Kevin panics, drives his car into a ditch, and three minutes later it explodes. He receives another call with the same basis and a bigger bomb. Together with FBI agent Jennifer Peters and CBI agent and childhood friend Samantha Sheer (Sam for short,) Kevin scrambles to beat Slater at his own game.

Provides examples of:

  • Expy: The film's Riddle Killer has quite a bit in common with the Jigsaw Killer.
  • Fish out of Water: Jennifer mentions that it's surprising that Kevin can even function in society after his abusive, and isolated upbringing.
  • Karma Houdini: Belinda is in a way responsible for everything that happens in the book by isolating Kevin in a world of shifting realities and that practically forced him to split into two personalities, 1 good and 1 bad, and she gets absolutely no punishment whatsoever.
    • Additionally, in the book, there is no confirmation that the real Riddle Killer is ever caught, though he is in the film.
  • Like Brother and Sister: Kevin and Sam are this. It's stated that they are best childhood friends and would never, ever jeopardize this. It becomes fairly obvious why there can be no sexual attraction when you find out that Sam is actually one of Kevin's multiple personalities.
  • Mad Bomber: The Riddle Killer, loves using explosives.
  • Made of Evil: Slater is this to Kevin, representing his evil.
  • Poetic Serial Killer: The Riddle Killer is targeting Kevin the "sins" he claims he committed in the past.
  • Serial Killer: The Riddle Killer, Slater, obviously.
  • Split Personality: Double Subversion. Samantha believes that Kevin has a split personality that is the Riddle Killer, but in reality the killer is a different person. However, it's actually played straight when it's revealed that both Samantha and the Riddle Killer, Slater, are in fact two different personalities, who he created as a child.
  • Spoiled Brat: Both Bob and Eugene refer to Pricilla as "Princess".
  • The Killer in Me: Kevin is the Riddle Killer.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Kevin Parson is tormented by a serial killer that decides to make him his next victim. He's aided by an old childhood friend and an FBI agent whose brother was one of the victims. It later turns out that both the "killer" and the childhood friend are alternate personalities of the main character, caused by the abuse his adoptive mother put him through as a child. In fact, the "evil" side of his personality isn't the same serial killer that killed the agent's brother at all—the main character heard about the murders and his other personality started to copy them.