Wednesday, January 3, 2018

"The Bomb Maker"

Thomas Perry's novels include the Jane Whitefield series (Vanishing Act, Dance for the Dead, Shadow Woman, The Face Changers, Blood Money, Runner, Poison Flower, and A String of Beads), Death Benefits, Pursuit, the first recipient of the Gumshoe Award for best novel, and The Butcher's Boy, which won the prestigious Edgar Award.

Perry applied the Page 69 Test to his new novel, The Bomb Maker, and reported the following:
This is always an interesting test, because it almost always turns up a page that’s a fair sample of the rest of the book. Page 69 in The Bomb Maker is the last part of one of the central scenes. Dick Stahl, the former boss and team leader of the LAPD bomb squad, has returned because the squad has lost half its technicians in a single blast. His first bomb is a car chained to the pumps of a gas station. In this scene he and his two team members have removed most of the military-grade explosives in the car, but found a final piece, a ten-inch pipe two feet long that’s had its ends epoxied shut. He and the team believe it’s got a mercury tilt switch under the cap. If it’s not level it will explode. Stahl and his team put the bomb in a backpack, put a spirit level from the tool box on it, and Stahl, walking slowly and alone, carries it on his chest down into the dry concrete riverbed about a hundred yards away to put it in a containment vessel and detonate it. Page 69 is the detonation of the huge charge. I like this page 69 because it tells us who Dick Stahl really is, and gives us a single image of what it can mean to be a bomb technician.
Learn more about the book and author at Thomas Perry's website and Facebook page.

Writers Read: Thomas Perry.

--Marshal Zeringue