Wednesday, August 31, 2011

"The Most Dangerous Thing"

Laura Lippman was a reporter for twenty years, including twelve years at The (Baltimore) Sun. She began writing novels while working fulltime and published seven books about “accidental PI” Tess Monaghan before leaving daily journalism in 2001. Her work has been awarded the Edgar ®, the Anthony, the Agatha, the Shamus, the Nero Wolfe, Gumshoe and Barry awards. She also has been nominated for other prizes in the crime fiction field, including the Hammett and the Macavity.

She applied the Page 69 Test to her new novel, The Most Dangerous Thing, and reported the following:
Page 69 in this book is not exactly representative of the book, but it's key, a scene that will become pivotal in hindsight. And it's one of the chapters written in the plural first-person, a risk that may or may be rewarded, depending on the reader. I believed it was key to the novel and I stand by it, but it's hard to talk about without being a bit of a spoiler. Besides, I'd prefer for readers to decide on their own the "why" behind the decision. At any rate, it centers on the first encounter between five children and a man who lives in a shack in the woods.
He had grown tired of the conversation, or tired of us. He bent down and pulled the guitar out from under the bed. We were kids then, all adults were old to us, but Chicken George, as would come to call him, was especially confounding. You could have told us he was fifty, not that much older than Tim is now, or you could have told us ninety, and we wouldn't have argued. He was old, someone who had seen a lot and knew a lot.
Learn more about the book and author at Laura Lippman's website and blog.

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

--Marshal Zeringue