Friday, August 8, 2014

"Palmetto Moon"

Kim Boykin is the author of The Wisdom of Hair from Berkley, Steal Me, Cowboy and Sweet Home Carolina from Tule, and the newly released Palmetto Moon, also from Berkley.

Boykin applied the Page 69 Test to Palmetto Moon and reported the following:
The last time I was graciously invited to this blog, I was a little disappointed my book didn't pass the Page 69 Test. I'm delighted to report Palmetto Moon passes with flying colors. The story picks up on Frank and Vada's first date. They've just been in a dance hall full of writing couples, some of whom were tossed out for public displays of affection that didn't jive with the dancehall rules that were on a 4X6' plywood sign. Frank and Vada have stepped out back to an area where lovers, no doubt many of whom were just tossed from the dance. It's a fragile moment for Frank, and of course Vada. Here's the scene through Frank's eyes.
“I wouldn’t do that if I were you.” She stretches out her long legs and smiles at him, teasing before she scoops up a handful of water and flicks it on him. Frank laughs, and she laughs, too, shutting out all the lovers’ sounds and the night sounds, too. He sits beside her and pulls her close so that her feet aren’t dangling over the edge anymore. “See that?” He points out into the lily pads that are lovingly choking the pond to death. She peers out onto the moonlit lake until she sees the massive gator impersonating a log, and then she draws her knees up to her chest like a little girl.

“Vada?” She nuzzles closer to him. “Can I kiss you?”

She turns her face up to his, and her smile dissolves into yearning as they move toward each other. His lips graze against hers, nuzzling them so that when she runs her tongue across her lips it touches his. He can’t help but be tentative, like she’s breakable, like what they have is breakable, but the kiss deepens. Her breathing quickens, and Frank is sure he can feel her heart beating against his.

Floodlights come on, blinding them, and the old woman who took their ticket hollers that the dance is over and everybody has to clear out. Frank’s forehead is still pressed against Vada’s. He’s afraid to move, afraid the spell will be broken. He helps her up, and she looks up at him and smiles. “Frank?” There’s something monstrous and wrong about this night ending, about taking her back to the boardinghouse. Frank wants to take her away from here, but he doesn’t think she’s ready for happily ever after with him, at least not yet. She puts her hands on his face and runs her thumbs across his stubble. “Thank you. This was the most perfect evening ever.”
Learn more about the book and author at Kim Boykin's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Wisdom of Hair.

My Book, The Movie: The Wisdom of Hair.

Coffee with a Canine: Kim Boykin & Wylie, Molly and Toby.

Writers Read: Kim Boykin.

--Marshal Zeringue