Friday, August 3, 2012

"City of the Lost"

Stephen Blackmoore is a Los Angeles-based writer of crime and horror.

He applied the Page 69 Test to City of the Lost, his first novel, and reported the following:
I'm not sure how indicative of the rest of the book page 69 is. It's one of the few pages that isn't full of profanity, brutal violence, or undead face munching.

City of the Lost is about a thug, Joe Sunday, who gets murdered and brought back from the dead. In this chunk of scene set in a bar he meets a woman whose appearance is a little too convenient.
“So what brings you out here tonight?” she asks. “Tragedy or comedy?”

“Does it have to be either?”

“In my experience it usually is.”

That one’s easy. “I’d say tragedy.”

“I’m sorry to hear that. The two aren’t really all that different from each other, you know. All depends on whether the ending’s happy.”

“You don’t say.” I know she’s linked with the stone somehow and what’s happened to me, but there’s something about her that sets me at ease.

“I think your problems could probably yield some pretty interesting opportunities,” she says.

I’m sure you do. “Is this where you try to sell me on Amway?”

“Unitarianism, actually, but I can see you’re not the cultish type. Besides, they kicked me out.”

“Funny. I had the same problem with the Methodists.”

I’d like to say this is the weirdest conversation I’ve had in a while, but the last twenty-four hours have been a lesson in freakish. Besides, she’s so damn comfortable to talk to. It’s easy, and fun. And for a few minutes, at least, I can forget about immortality and zombies and not breathing.

“What about you?” I ask. “What brings you out here?”

“Got bored, decided to check this place out. Nice vibe.” She gives me that dazzling smile again. “Nice people.”

“So you’re not a regular?”

She shakes her head. “Oh, hell no. Though I must say I’ve been enjoying the show.”
She seems to see my scotch for the first time. “If I’d known you were a serious drinker, I wouldn’t be trying to ply you with this crap. What are you drinking?”

“Nothing.” I slide the glass over to her. What’s the point if you can’t get drunk?

She reaches over, takes a sniff, a delicate taste.

“Oban. Pretty expensive nothing.”

“You know your scotches. Consider it the obligatory drink I buy you.”
Learn more about the book and author at Stephen Blackmoore's website.

My Book, The Movie: City of the Lost.

--Marshal Zeringue