Wednesday, March 4, 2015

"The Bargaining"

Carly Anne West is a freelance writer with an MFA in English and Creative Writing from Mills College.

She applied the Page 69 Test to her new novel, The Bargaining, and reported the following:
I’m not sure I could have chosen a more perfect page to set the scene for The Bargaining than page 69. There’s so much going on here.

Penny is still trembling from her first traumatic encounter in the North Woods, a damaged and tortured place for which she hasn’t even begun to gain a true understanding. And instead of feeling the emotions she knows she needs to process, she’s tucking them away, succumbing to the numbness that has kept her breathing since the death of her best friend Rae. This particular set of actions mirrors those described in the first scene of the book in which we see Penny. The death of Rae still fresh, she has begun to develop the coping mechanism of zeroing in on only the most rudimentary sets of senses. It’s becoming clear that Penny has not nearly healed from her ordeal with Rae, and she’s instead developed these temporary behaviors to approximate living.

Page 69 is also the first time Penny and her stepmom April are seeing the Carver House – the place April was hoping to turn into a Bed & Breakfast – and numbness is not an option here. Penny is assaulted by the smells of age and neglect that have settled into the old house, and it’s immediately clear that neither of them is prepared for what these woods and everything in them is going to inflict on them.
Learn more about the book and author at Carly Anne West's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Murmurings.

--Marshal Zeringue