Saturday, January 17, 2009

Pg. 69: Malcolm Shuman's "The Levee"

The current feature at the Page 69 Test: The Levee by Malcolm Shuman.

About the book, from the publisher:
Colin Douglas, a 63-year-old true crime writer, witnesses the execution of his latest subject which leaves him "feeling hollow, with a copper taste in my mouth."

The upsetting experience triggers a recurrent nightmare, about a traumatic incident that occurred in 1959, when he was a boy growing up in Baton Rouge. A teacher from his school was murdered in a cemetery near a Mississippi River levee and an abandoned slave plantation.

In his nightmare, he sinks into the mud of a borrow pit and when his nocturnal dread even begins to affect his waking life, he decides to leave Colorado and return to Baton Rouge to find out what really happened that night.

The fascinating parallel narratives of Colin the boy and the mature writer come together when he meets his old friend, Blaize St. Martin. Their discussion of that dark night leads to new discoveries and ends with the shocking impact of a Hitchcock film.

Based on a true story, The Levee subtly explores the reality beneath the surface of the America of 1959. with vivid characters and a convincing portrayal of adolescent boys. this book has been compared to The Body by Stephen King, the basis for the film, Stand By Me.
Read more about The Levee at the publisher's website and visit Malcolm Shuman's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Levee.

--Marshal Zeringue