Page 69 of On the Wrong Track is the first page of the tenth chapter, which I think gives me a nice little edge on your test. You see, I name all my chapters, and the name of chapter 10 -- “Black Curtains” -- hopefully has an intriguingly sinister ring to it.Visit Steve Hockensmith's official website.
The first two paragraphs aren’t exactly action packed: They describe porters on a passenger train turning down beds for the night. But the scene is set, and in paragraphs three and four you get to the meat of the book. Literally, in a (sick) way.
Word quickly spread that porters had deposited the baggageman’s body [in the baggage car] ... stuffed in a stewpot from the dining-car kitchen.
Oh, that’s bunk, I almost replied upon hearing this from Horner, who relayed it with the eyebrow-waggling leer men usually reserve for off-color jokes. The body was banged up, sure, but you couldn’t squeeze it into no pot. You’d need at least a washtub.
So by the time you’re (I hope) sucked along to page 70, you’ve learned that (A) the book takes place on a passenger train, (B) a member of the crew is murdered in a pretty messy manner and (C) the narrator’s a folksy guy with a (sometimes twisted) sense of humor.
Is that enough to convince someone to whip out their wallet? I sure hope so. If not, I’d tell them to check out page 166 -- that one really rocks!
Check out the complete list of books in the Page 69 Series.