Tuesday, June 22, 2010


Nicola Monaghan grew up in Nottingham, England. A career in finance took her to New York, Paris, and Chicago, but she gave it up to pursue an MA in creative writing at Nottingham Trent University.

She applied the Page 69 Test to Starfishing, her second novel, and reported the following:
Well, Starfishing is a pretty sexy book, so the fact that this is page 69 we’re talking about should not go unmentioned. There’s probably less action on this page than there is in a lot of the book, and no actual sex, though there is a promise to be fulfilled in the next few pages. Frankie, the novel’s main character, an Essex girl come good, is quite a conflicted personality, torn between her past council estate* raised self and her sophisticated City of London persona. This comes across pretty strongly in this section, where we see Frankie out drinking with her Essex girl mates, appalled by the clothes they wear but at the same time trying to change her accent to the way it used to be. They are at a local pub, and just to make the picture complete, Frankie’s ex turns up with yet another new girl on his arm. It’s years since they’ve been together but it still stings a little. Frankie tries to tell herself it doesn’t matter, though, push the emotions she feels out of reach. He’s the man she lost her virginity to and she plays this down as well, saying ‘Waiting for someone special is overrated – the whole thing is best got out of the way sooner rather than later. I wish to God I’d done it with some random stranger.’ All of these things are her character all over.

*UK equivalent of a housing project
Browse inside Starfishing, and learn more about the book and author at Nicola Monaghan's website and blog.

Visit the complete list of books in the Page 69 Test Series.

--Marshal Zeringue