Sunday, June 7, 2009


Jim Krusoe is the author of the novels Girl Factory (Tin House Books) and Iceland; two collections of stories, Blood Lake and Abductions; as well as five books of poetry. He is the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Lila Wallace Reader's Digest Fund. He teaches at Santa Monica College.

He applied the “Page 69 Test” to his new book, Erased, and reported the following:
Fortuitously, coincidentally, or just plain repetitiously, page 69 starts with the words, “To sum up.” And here is the situation that is being summarized: Theodore has arrived in Cleveland, Ohio, where he’s searching (in a somewhat desultory fashion) for his dead mother, who has summoned him there by means of two mysterious postcards sent from beyond the grave. To his surprise, although Cleveland, “with its tree-lined streets and well-shaped concrete curbs,” has turned out to be a city of rare grace and beauty, he still is clueless as to what he’s supposed to do, exactly. In other words, he’s at an impasse.

Clearly, Theodore is on a quest, but even as blind and pokey as this one seems to be at the moment, as with all quests, we understand it must end somewhere. And though Theodore is at present confused eating rather more than he should, happily for him, in the very next pages he will meet a person who will serve as his guide. Her name is Uleene, and she is the last surviving member of a do-gooding women’s motorcycle club, Satan’s Samaritans. In the pages that follow she will lead him through a series of visits to some other remarkable women’s clubs in search of his mother, culminating in an afternoon at the All City Bowling League, where Theodore will be given a final test he must pass.
Read an excerpt from Erased, and learn more about the book at the Tin House website.

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

--Marshal Zeringue