Saturday, June 1, 2013

"Sacred Games"

Gary Corby is a novelist and former systems programmer at Microsoft. He lives in Australia with his wife and two daughters. His debut novel is The Pericles Commission.

Corby applied the Page 69 Test to his new novel, Sacred Games, and reported the following:
Sacred Games is a mystery set at the ancient Olympics of 460BC. A Spartan athlete has been murdered. An Athenian stands accused. Nicolaos must either prove the Athenian did it -- and that Athenian happens to be Nico's best friend -- or he must prove his friend innocent. Either way, if the case isn't made it could lead to war between Sparta and Athens.

Page 69 sees my hero Nicolaos meet the famous praise singer Pindar. Praise singers were poets-for-hire who, for a fee, would write and then sing the victory song of a winning athlete. Pindar was the greatest praise singer of his day. He might even have written the two most famous lines of poetry of all time: the epitaph for the 300 who held the pass at Thermopylae ("Passer-by, go tell the Spartans, that here, according to their law, we lie.")

This is all very relevant to the story because Pindar has crucial evidence for Nico, which he's about to tell him. Pindar likes Nico and is very willing to help him. But Pindar will equally assist the Spartan investigator Markos, who's been put on the job representing Sparta. It's this contest between Nico and the Spartan Markos to solve the crime that fascinates Pindar.

It's a very real contest too, and very official: the judges who control the Games have sworn both Nico and Markos by the Olympic Oath, to hunt down the killer. For the first time in history, murder investigation is an Olympic event.
Learn more about the book and author at Gary Corby's blog.

The Page 69 Test: The Pericles Commission.

Writers Read: Gary Corby (November 2010).

My Book, The Movie: The Pericles Commission.

My Book, The Movie: The Ionia Sanction.

Writers Read: Gary Corby (November 2011).

The Page 69 Test: The Ionia Sanction.

--Marshal Zeringue