Tuesday, June 5, 2018

"The Bird and the Blade"

Megan Bannen is a librarian and the author of The Bird and the Blade. In her spare time, she collects graduate degrees from Kansas colleges and universities. While most of her professional career has been spent in public libraries, she has also sold luggage, written grants, and taught English at home and abroad. She lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, their two sons, and a few too many pets with literary names.

Bannen applied the Page 69 Test to The Bird and the Blade and reported the following:
Page 69 of The Bird and the Blade finds us in the Caucasus mountains through which Prince Khalaf and Timur Khan of the recently overthrown Kipchak Khanate are fleeing for their lives. The story’s protagonist, Jinghua, a slave girl, is supposed to be hunting for food in the forest. Instead, she falls asleep and dreams of her dead brother.
I open my eyes to find myself frozen to the core and more uncomfortable than I can bear. The dream quickly disintegrates in my memory. I remember only Weiji telling me he wanted to go home, and it leaves me feeling hollow and depressed.
Weiji’s ghost haunts Jinghua throughout the story, a mirror of her own unattainable desires. At this stage of the plot the one and only thing Jinghua wants is to return home, a dream that is about to be destroyed in the following pages. As she heads back to camp, she hears fighting in the distance.
Maybe if I just stay here and wait, it will end, and I won’t have to deal with it.
Whew, that line is Jinghua in a nutshell. At this point in the novel, the reader is unaware of all the things that make Jinghua’s choices extremely complicated, but complicated they are, and poor Jinghua is frequently paralyzed with indecision as a result.

That indecision just might be her downfall.
Visit Megan Bannen's website.

Coffee with a Canine: Megan Bannen & Brontë.

--Marshal Zeringue