Saturday, March 25, 2017

"Dare You"

Jennifer Brown is the author of the young adult novels Shade Me, Bitter End, Perfect Escape, Thousand Words, and Torn Away. Her debut young adult novel, Hate List, was chosen as an ALA Best Book for Young Adults, a VOYA Perfect Ten, and a School Library Journal Best Book of the Year.

Brown applied the Page 69 Test to Dare You, the second book in her Shade Me series, and reported the following:
Dare You begins with Nikki getting herself into trouble on graduation night. Getting into trouble seems to be Nikki’s specialty, but this time she’s gotten herself tossed into jail, where she finds out she’s a person of interest in Peyton Hollis’s murder. On page 69, Nikki has just been sprung by none other than Detective Martinez, the officer who helped her—whether she wanted him to or not—with the Hollis case. Just when Nikki had decided to trust the detective and let him into her life, he bugged out. Nikki hasn’t seen or heard from him since her showdown with Luna Fairchild, and she is pissed. Most of page 69 is her laying into Martinez as they leave the police station:
“How could you not know? You were there that night. You were the first officer on the scene, in fact. You followed me everywhere to solve it. I told you where Peyton’s car was. You were supposed to finish Luna. You said you were going to. And instead, you’re turning the case onto me? You’re deciding that some bullshit witness and a half-empty pack of cigarettes mean I was the one who murdered her? I let you in and you completely sold me out. And now you show up, months later, with coffee—” I crammed my cup into his console, a drop sloshing out of the lid and landing on the edge of his seat. “And get me out of jail that you’re trying to put me into? You make zero sense.”

“I’m not trying to put you in here. I have nothing to do with it,” he said, taking off his sunglasses and tossing them onto the dash. His dark eyes searched mine. “You’re your own worst enemy, Nikki.”
Truer words have never been spoken. Nikki is her own worst enemy, and her stubbornness in accepting the detective’s—or anyone’s—help threatens to undo her time and again. What the detective doesn’t realize, though, is Nikki’s rant is her way of saying she does want his help. Even if she doesn’t realize it herself, her anger over Martinez’s absence is an expression of how much she wants him in her life.

What I love most about page 69 is that it’s our first look at Nikki’s reunion with Detective Martinez. We get to see that they will be working together once again. And we get to see the fire behind their relationship.

It’s the beginning of a lot of heated banter…and possibly just a lot of heat.
Learn more about the book and author at Jennifer Brown's website.

Coffee with a Canine: Jennifer Brown & Ursula and Aragorn.

My Book, The Movie: Life on Mars.

The Page 69 Test: Shade Me.

--Marshal Zeringue