Tuesday, October 25, 2011


Dean Crawford worked as a graphic designer before he left the industry to pursue his lifelong dream of writing full-time. An aviation and motorcycle enthusiast, he lives with his family in Surrey, England.

He applied the Page 69 Test to his new novel, Covenant, and reported the following:
Page 69 ( in the UK paperback version ) is the opening to chapter 10, and follows two supporting major characters from the novel. Most of the attention focuses on Ethan Warner of course, but I created two detectives who are at work in Washington DC investigating the deaths of three men who appear to have suffered frostbite, despite DC sweltering under a heat wave. The two characters took on a life of their own as I wrote the first draft, and gave me a chance to create two people as full of life as the hero.

‘You know I hate this part.’

Lucas Tyrell grinned at Lopez as he drove the car into the parking lot and killed the engine.

‘You’ve gotta get used to it. Just don’t get too used to it, or I’ll have you sectioned.’ He turned to Bailey, who sat quietly in the rear seat. ‘Sit tight buddy, shouldn’t take too long.’ He tossed a handful of biscuits into the rear of the car and then clambered out, mopping his brow as he caught his breath.

Truth was, he felt the same about morgues as she did, and he had far more experience than her. Not for the first time he wondered what had kept her in the district.

Nicola Lopez had emigrated with her family to DC almost twenty years before as a gangly nine-year-old from Guanajuato, Mexico, a ramshackle town nestled in the Veeder Mountains. She had been raised a Catholic amidst the cobbled streets and quaint markets far from the hustle and bustle of America’s capital city. Dragged by a family searching for a better life away from the crippling silver mines of Las Ranas they had found instead only a better quality of misery, where endemic poverty and poor sanitation had been replaced with housing projects, fast food and Type-Two diabetes.
The reader learns more about the two characters as the novel develops, their close friendship becoming ever more strained as they struggle with the complexities of the case and their own conflicting interests. Even within the confines of a commercial thriller, it can still be fun to create realistic characters who have believable relationships, even if they ultimately are forced to turn against one another.
Learn more about the book and author at Dean Crawford's website and blog.

Writers Read: Dean Crawford.

My Book, The Movie: Covenant.

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

--Marshal Zeringue