Wednesday, February 4, 2009

"One More Bite"

Jennifer Rardin is the author of Bitten to Death and three previous novels in the Jaz Parks series.

She applied the Page 69 Test to One More Bite, the latest novel in the series, and reported the following:
One More Bite, which released to US readers on January 5, 2009, takes fans of the Jaz Parks series on a brand new adventure, in which our heroes must assassinate an assassin. But this killer’s got skills. Including, of course, the ability to hide his/her identity.

On page sixty-nine of the US version of the book (the UK version is in mass market size so it reads differently) we find our heroes, Jaz and Vayl, narrowing down suspects. Is this single page representative of the rest of the novel? Yes and no.

From page 69 you can deduce that Jaz and Vayl are more than just coworkers. And their troubled histories keep them mired in such a way that it’s hard for them to move on with their lives. You also get a sense of Jaz’s voice, a strong, sassy melody you’ll be humming long after you’ve finished the story.

What this page misses is the action. Readers tend to pick these books up and keep them in-hand until they’ve read the entire story because the pacing is so quick. All the books in the series, including One More Bite, also contain numerous laugh-out-loud moments. But even though you won’t be giggling when you get to the bottom of the page, I think you’ll read on. If only to find out what happens between Jaz and Vayl. Their relationship is one of the most fascinating aspects of this book, and this series. But that’s just my opinion. What do you think?

Excerpt from One More Bite—Page 69:

sad bowl of ashes and the samples I’d be handing off to some stranger during the opening ceremonies tonight. Vayl accepted the whole story with nothing more than a lowering of the brows, his substitute for any of a number of the four-letter words that relieved the worst of my stresses.

I moved on to the part that had burned holes into my guts. “Viv’s on the level with her story. Whether that makes her our killer or not . . .” I shrugged, unable to go on. Those pictures. Jesus. You could distance yourself from the victims. But not from Viv’s stoned and tragic face. Especially when you put it next to the before shot of an outgoing debate team member with a promising political career ahead of her.

“Viv’s had it pretty rough since. She dropped out of college. Doesn’t see any of her friends. Works at the library in her hometown and lives with her mom and Iona.”

“So do you believe she has simply come because her mother will not let her stay home alone?” Vayl asked. “That she is, indeed, Bea? Or that she truly intended to find someone like us all along?”

“I prefer choice number three.”

Vayl’s brows lowered. “Disturbing, is it not, that the living allow the dead to exert so much power over them?”

We stared at each other for a second and then shook our heads, trading sheepish grins. “We’re a couple of hypocrites, Boss.”

He inched closer. “I wish you would not call me that.”

I lifted my chin so I could look into his eyes, glittering like gems in his immobile face. “Sverhamin, then?”

“Ahh.” His breath blew across my lips. “When you agreed to accept me as such, did you ever think you would find yourself here?”

“In Scotland?”

He gave me that semi smile that made my knees want to buckle. “Why is it that you love to tangle with my patience?”
Read an excerpt from One More Bite.

Learn more about the author and her work at Jennifer Rardin's website, MySpace page, and Facebook page.

My Book, The Movie: the Jaz Parks Series.

--Marshal Zeringue