Sunday, October 3, 2010

Since I have No Time...

Since I'm in the middle of midterms and have almost no time to eat or sleep, I decided to share this interesting article (and some quick experimentation) with you. I saw this link: Putting the Page 99 test to the, er, test | Books | The Guardian over at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books and got curious.

So I put a few books sitting around my shelves to the test:

Rebecca Brandewyne’s Jacaranda Tree (mass market paperback): Page 99 actually gives the reader a rare lighthearted moment in this book. Could be very misleading.
Dakota Cassidy’s My Way to Hell (trade paperback): Page 99 is HILARIOUS, a great taste of the entire book.
Michael Crichton’s Congo (hardback): Page 99 reads like a technical manual for the book, it discusses laser technology... boring. And this is one of my favorite books of all time.
Patrick Neate’s City of Tiny Lights (trade paperback): Page 99 is a scene that utterly personifies the entire book, if I hadn’t read it before it would have told me exactly what to expect.
Teresa Medeiros The Devil Wears Plaid (mass market paperback): Page 99 is literally a summary of the adventure of this story, while any aspect of the romance is absent, it would definitely tell the reader what to expect from this “travel” tale.

From my quick test of books I’ve already read, this test seems much more accurate for trade paper backs than mass market, probably because trade paperbacks are bigger and thus have shorter page counts you’re further along in the story at page 99 in a trade paperback than in a mass market paperback.

Try it out. What do you think? I don’t think I’ll be trying this with books I haven’t read any time soon, I’m a purist and get frustrated with the book blurbs that ruin too much of the story, it would kill me to know what to expect on page 99.

Happy Reading!

Update: I got an e-mail from Marshal Zeringue who let me know that over at his blog, the aptly named, Page 99 Test they've been putting this to the test since 2007... very interesting stuff.

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