Wednesday, December 12, 2012

"The Almost Truth"

Eileen Cook spent most of her teen years wishing she were someone else or somewhere else, which is great training for a writer. She is the author of The Almost Truth, Unraveling Isobel, The Education of Hailey Kendrick, Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood, and What Would Emma Do? as well as the Fourth Grade Fairy series.

Cook applied the Page 69 Test to her latest novel, The Almost Truth, and reported the following:
I am traveling as I write this and don't have a copy of the book with me. However, I do have my trusty laptop. You never know when inspiration will strike, so I have a copy of the manuscript. The page numbers won't match up with the page numbers in the book, but on the computer page 69 is the beginning of chapter 13. Sadie has her best friend Brendan over to her house. Things for them have been awkward since they slept together. What's clear is that it meant a lot to Brendan and Sadie wants to stay friends. She's planning on leaving town in a few months and never wants to come back. Dating Brendan would make that complicated.

Brendan has come over to help her with a con she's working on, but everything he says rubs Sadie the wrong way. It's a good example of the book because it shows how Sadie is pushed and pulled in different directions. Figuring out what she wants is not easy.

From Page 69:
Brendan followed me home. He wanted to look through the information I’d already gathered on the McKenna family. I never used to care if he was in my room with me, but ever since we’d been together it felt weird. Now I didn’t want to sit with him on my bed, and there wasn’t any other space in my room, so I dragged everything outside onto the broken down picnic table in our yard.

Brendan sat down carefully. “The only thing this table is good for anymore is making splinters. You touch it and it imbeds wood into your hand.” Brendan lightly touched the surface of the scarred table. “It’s a terrorist table. The US could drop this into a war zone as some kind of weapon.”

I dumped the pile of information and pictures I’d printed off the Internet onto the tabletop. “If it’s giving you splinters then don’t touch it.”

“Somebody’s cranky.” Brendan flipped through the stack of papers.

I decided to ignore him. I managed to stay quiet all of a few minutes. “I’m not cranky, I just didn’t need you trying to con the guy I need information from with one of your two bit cigarette bets.”

Brendan looked up from what he was reading and raised an eyebrow. “Uh-huh.” He looked back down.

I sat on the edge of the seat and bounced my foot up and down in annoyance while he read. Brendan was the master of driving me nuts. He could get a PhD in irritating behavior without having to study.

I reached for a newspaper article and a splinter sliced into the pad of my fingertip, burying itself into my flesh. I snatched my hand back. I stuck my finger in my mouth and sucked on it, trying to pull the sliver of wood out. I glanced across the table and saw Brendan smirking.

“So are you happy now?” I asked him. “You’re right, the table has some kind of splinter jihad going.”
Learn more about the author and her books at Eileen Cook’s website and blog.

My Book, The Movie: Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood.

My Book, The Movie: The Education of Hailey Kendrick.

Writers Read: Eileen Cook.

--Marshal Zeringue