Wednesday, July 23, 2008

"The Legal Limit"

Martin Clark’s first novel, The Many Aspects of Mobile Home Living, was a New York Times Notable Book and a finalist for the Stephen Crane First Fiction Award. His second novel, Plain Heathen Mischief, prompted The Charlotte Observer to call him “a rising star in American Letters.”

He applied the Page 69 Test to his new novel, The Legal Limit, and reported the following:
Thank you so much for your inquiry and offer to include my new book, The Legal Limit, on your “Page 69 Test” site. I understand it is a popular destination for readers, and I very much hoped that particular page of my book would mesh well with your theme, allowing me to do a bit more than just the normal synopsis and overview of my novel. Alas, no matter how much I twist and bend and try to stretch things, there is no connection that I can spot, and any attempt at a tie-in just seems feeble and contrived, completely forced: there is no mention of the New York Mets; no “Summer of Love;” no character born that year; and, sadly, far more than a mere 69 words. In the end, the novel is about a murder, a murder cover-up, what it is like to be put on trial when you really are innocent and whether the legal system should break the law to actually do justice, a topic I have a fair amount of experience with given that I am a circuit court judge. Despite this shortcoming, perhaps you could throw a little charity my way and still post a line or two from my page 69. I just went right to the middle of the page, immediately after a break: “At Allison Rand’s core was a patent invitation to sex, and there was nothing she could do about it, even if she’d wanted to: her eyes were green, honeyed embraces, slightly languid but permanently in on a very private joke, her hair blond, her smiles given more to satisfaction than mirth, her shape, from calves to breasts, overtly appealing…” So maybe next time. For sure I’ll try to work something in, maybe a Spiro Agnew mention.
Read an excerpt from The Legal Limit, and learn more about the book and author at Martin Clark's website.

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

--Marshal Zeringue