Thursday, December 11, 2008

"The Murderers' Club"

PD Martin lives in Melbourne, Australia. She is the author of three crime novels: Body Count, The Murderers’ Club, and Fan Mail (now available in Australia and New Zealand and due to be released in North America and the UK in May 2009).

She applied the Page 69 Test to the mass market edition of The Murderers' Club and reported the following:
The Murderers’ Club is about an elite group of serial killers who communicate online, via a chat room.

Page 69 features the tail end of one of the brief chat room scenes that are scattered throughout the book to give readers an insight into the minds of four serial killers. In this way, the page is representative of the book because it gives the reader a sneak peek at this medium.

However, the actual scene doesn’t really give you an accurate picture of just how evil the characters are or what they’re up to – it doesn’t help that p.69 is actually at the end of a chapter, so it’s only half a page! Take a step back, to p. 68, and we get more of an insight:

NeverCaught: Can’t believe it’s only Sunday. Another four days until I get my next chance.

BlackWidow: You’ll just have to wait, Never.

NeverCaught: Easy for you to say. You got the first kill – Malcolm.

In terms of the chat room scenes, one of my personal favorites appears on p. 51:

AmericanPsycho: Our first kill has made its mark.

BlackWidow: You know what they say – it’s never as good as the first time. I mean the very first.

NeverCaught: My first was definitely special, but I enjoy it more now.

AmericanPsycho: Sex or murder?

NeverCaught: Both.

AmericanPsycho: My first was fantastic. It was the same person.

BlackWidow: Yes, they’re inextricably linked for me. It’s hard to have sex with someone and then not kill them.

As you can guess from the above extracts, the Club sets in motion a particularly nasty plan – and when bodies turn up, Aussie FBI profiler Sophie Anderson is on the case. However, this is another area in which page 69 is NOT representative of the book – it doesn’t feature my main character, Sophie.

Sophie Anderson is an ex-police officer from Australia who now works for the FBI as a profiler. She also experiences nightmares and waking flashes about her cases that often come true. In fact, the Sydney Morning Herald described The Murderers’ Club as: “The Silence of the Lambs meets Medium, with a passing nod to Patricia Cornwell.”

I think this description, coupled with the knowledge that my books are fast-paced police/FBI procedurals with lots of forensic and criminal psychology details, gives the reader a good idea of what to expect from The Murderers’ Club and my first book, Body Count. Probably a better idea of the book than the half-page extract that is p.69!
Learn more about the book and author at PD Martin's website.

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

--Marshal Zeringue