Thursday, March 25, 2021


Emily B. Martin splits her time between working as a park ranger and an author/illustrator, resulting in her characteristic eco-fantasy adventures. An avid hiker and explorer, her experiences as a ranger help inform the characters and worlds she creates on paper.

When not patrolling places like Yellowstone, the Great Smoky Mountains, or Philmont Scout Ranch, she lives in South Carolina with her husband, Will, and two daughters, Lucy and Amelia.

Martin applied the Page 69 Test to her new novel Floodpath, and reported the following:
The Page 69 Test opens a tiny but dead-on window into Floodpath. It’s the very end of a chapter in which Lark, the main protagonist, has been running away in every sense of the word. Once a much-feared desert outlaw, she’s uncovered truths about herself that redefine everything she is and could become, and up to this point in the book, she’s been emotionally, mentally, and physically fleeing from them. By the end of this chapter, on page 69, she’s out of time, and all the things she’s been running from have caught up to her. She collapses and loses consciousness. Narrating this, she ends the chapter with, “I tilt and disappear.”

This is such a great glimpse of Floodpath because the whole book is about losing and rebuilding identity. All three protagonists—Lark, Veran, and Tamsin—have gone through major identity crises in book 1. In the sequel, I wanted essentially to break them all down, strip away everything they thought they were, leave them to flounder for a few beats, and then watch them build themselves back up into something stronger, something truer. Lark is at this breaking point on page 69. Up until then, she’s been denying the things she’s found out about her past. She refuses to believe it’s true and gets angry when Veran tries to discuss it. After this page, when she’s dragged back to consciousness, she begins to give in, just a tiny bit. She starts to prod this new identity, examine it, try it on for size. And while she still has a long road to travel before she accepts it, this page is where that turning point begins.

In short, it’s the moment she stops running from something and starts creeping toward something.
Visit Emily B. Martin's website and check out her six stunning eco-fantasies for nature lovers.

The Page 69 Test: Sunshield.

--Marshal Zeringue