The Page 69 Test
Authors Michael Scott and Melanie Ruth Rose applied the Page 69 Test to Mirror Image, their first collaboration with each other, and reported the following:
Mirror Image is a horror novel about a seven foot tall, four foot wide slab of polished glass. When blood is spilled on the glass, images and scenes which have been reflected in the mirror over its long existence are revealed. So too is the figure which is trapped within, a creature which, in the grand tradition of all horror novels, wants out!
However – none of this appears on page 69!
At this stage in the novel, all of the main players are coming together, and this entire chapter – Chapter Fourteen – gives us the backstory to one of the novel’s great tragic characters: Edmund Talbott. When we first meet him, we are presented with a huge hulking figure, his face crisscrossed with countless scars. He looks, and acts, like the villain of the piece. And, make no mistake, he is not a particularly nice man, but on page 69, we discover how and why he ended up so horribly disfigured and suddenly his actions should start to make sense.
Like several of the characters in the novel, Talbott is based on a real historical character. His namesake and ancestor was one of the many owners of the glass and as the novel progresses, that story is slowly revealed until, ultimately, we discover the genesis of the mirror.
A version of the mirror actually exists. The real mirror weaves in and out of myth and legend for centuries. It was owned by some of the most extraordinary men and women in history, many of whom reported seeing or hearing remarkably things in the glass. Even to this day its face is kept perpetually covered behind a thick black cloth.
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