Monday, May 27, 2019

"The Scent Keeper"

Erica Bauermeister is the bestselling author of four novels including The School of Essential Ingredients, Joy for Beginners, The Lost Art of Mixing, and The Scent Keeper.

Bauermeister applied the Page 69 Test to The Scent Keeper and reported the following:
The Scent Keeper is a novel told in three parts, each in a different location. The first part is set on a remote, forested island where Emmeline lives with her father in almost complete isolation. Emmeline is raised with smell as her primary sense, and her life is alive with scents and the messages they send her. The island is magical, almost like a fairy tale, and as I was writing the book, I often wondered what would happen to the magic when Emmeline left the island (as she must – this is a novel with an arc, after all).

Just by chance, page 69 describes her initial reactions when she is forced to make that change to a new environment. For a girl who has grown up in fairly primitive conditions, even a bath is a strange experience:
…an endless torrent of cool, then hot, water poured out of the wall. I watched, fascinated and terrified, as it filled the tub. I couldn’t imagine how all that water stayed inside the walls, or what might happen if you made a hole in them by accident.
What I realized in writing Emmeline’s reactions to “ordinary” life is that magic is the art of making us see things from a new and unusual angle. In The Scent Keeper, what seems normal to Emmeline on the island seems impossible to us at times, but in Part Two, the situation is utterly reversed. Our world is as fantastical to her as it is mundane to us. Emmeline may have left her fairy tale island behind, but through her eyes, we can learn to see our lives in new and magical ways.
Learn more about the book and author at Erica Bauermeister's website.

The Page 69 Test: The School of Essential Ingredients.

The Page 69 Test: The Lost Art of Mixing.

Writers Read: Erica Bauermeister.

--Marshal Zeringue