Thursday, February 28, 2019

"The Huntress"

Kate Quinn is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of historical fiction. A native of southern California, she attended Boston University where she earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Classical Voice. She has written four novels in the Empress of Rome Saga, and two books in the Italian Renaissance, before turning to the 20th century with The Alice Network and The Huntress. All have been translated into multiple languages. Quinn and her husband now live in San Diego with two rescue dogs named Caesar and Calpurnia, and her interests include opera, action movies, cooking, and the Boston Red Sox.

Quinn applied the Page 69 Test to The Huntress and reported the following:
From page 69:
“Dad,” Jordan said, gripping his sleeve harder.

The crowd was already carrying them outside. He pulled Jordan along. “What is it?”

Jordan’s tongue dried up. What on earth was she going to do, rip Anneliese’s bouquet to bits on the church steps? What would that prove?

Anneliese’s laughing voice exclaimed behind her: “Jordan, catch!”

Jordan turned at the top of the church steps, and the bridal bouquet came flying into her hands.

“For my maid of honor,” Anneliese twinkled as guests clapped. “The train, Dan, we’ll be late—” There was a whirl of luggage and flying skirts as Dad loaded the cab and Anneliese slid her pocket-book over her arm, and Jordan stood feeling frozen all over again. Because she could feel quite clearly that there was no hard little lump among the stems now. Anneliese must have slid the Iron Cross out before throwing the bouquet.

It must be something very precious, Jordan thought, if she’d risk carrying it today, and only take it out at the last minute.

Or it was never there at all, another thought whispered, and for one horrible moment Jordan thought she was going crazy. Jordan and her wild stories. She’d concocted the wildest theory imaginable out of thin air and jealousy, and this time her mind was furnishing evidence.

But the strap of the Leica reassured her. The Iron Cross had been there; she’d snapped a shot of it. She’d go down to the darkroom the minute she got home, and run the film. Already she was shivering, imagining the black arms of the swastika emerging skull-like through the developing fluid. Proof.

Of what? Jordan thought, staring at Anneliese as Dad opened the cab door. By itself, it’s not proof of anything.

Except that this woman was hiding something.
Page 69 of The Huntress is about as representative as you can get for this book: it's the moment when my young heroine Jordan, on a beautiful summer day in 1946 when her widowed father marries a sweet-spoken Austrian widow newly emigrated to Boston, discovers that the bride has a Nazi war medal tucked like a good luck charm into her wedding bouquet. Jordan has already been feeling like there's something "off" about her father's fiancee, something that doesn't add up...but this is the first piece of solid proof she gets. In the moment when her beloved father has just married this woman and brought her into their family.

What does Jordan do with this information? Order your copy of The Huntress and find out!
Learn more about the book and author at Kate Quinn's website.

Coffee with a Canine: Kate Quinn and Caesar.

--Marshal Zeringue