Saturday, July 26, 2008

"The Drifter's Wheel"

Phillip DePoy is the author of a number of mysteries, including the Shamus Award finalist Easy. He has published short fiction, poetry, and criticism in Story, The Southern Poetry Review, Xanadu, and Yankee, among other magazines. As a folklorist, he has worked with Joseph Campbell and John Burrison. Depoy is currently the director of the theatre program at Clayton State University.

He applied the Page 69 Test to his new novel, The Drifter's Wheel, and reported the following:
The Drifter's Wheel is fifth in the Fever Devilin series. On page 69 we have a bullet, blood, cursing, handcuffs, and a man begging for his life. If readers who look at this page think there will be, on other pages, more guns, cursing, and blood, they will not be disappointed. They will also not understand the book. The antagonist, Boy Jackson, believes that he is hundreds of years old. He longs to be released from the wheel of birth and death so that he will never have to come back to this life. He asks us to suppose that when this life is done, we find ourselves wandering the corridors of Eternity. What is it that we should do, he wants to know, in order to avoid another time around the wheel? How can we be swept, instead, onward toward light, a place not made by human hands? The answer in some religions is simple. You just have to be willing to let go of life. You have to say good-bye and mean it. So there's the rub. If Boy Jackson keeps coming back, maybe he doesn't really want to go. As for myself, I'd start thinking about all the things I'd miss: poulet sauté a la Provincal; the second movement of Beethoven's 7th symphony; talking in bed with my wife. I believe I understand the way off the wheel of Time. I just won't do it--not yet. Despite bullets, blood, and begging, apparently, I am enjoying the ride. That's the book.
Learn more about The Drifter's Wheel and its author at Phillip DePoy's website.

Check out the complete list of books in the Page 69 Test Series.

--Marshal Zeringue