Cindy Pon tagged me for the "Page 56 Book Meme." I'm supposed to pick up the nearest book, turn to page 56 and post the fifth sentence and a few after that. I have Vanora Bennett's Portrait of an Unknown Woman (Harper trade paperback edition) at hand. Page 56 falls at the end of a chapter; since there is no fifth sentence, here is the concluding paragraph:
It was only late at night, when I was lying in bed (unable to sleep with excitement, my heart bursting at the memory of all that had happened that day and with all the plans I was making for my future with John), that I heard Elizabeth retching behind the closed door of her room, and the scrape of a chamber pot, and William's nasal whispering. I couldn't hear his words, but his tone was the mix of reassuring and nervous you'd expect from any father-to-be. It began to dawn on me what the reason for her sudden discomfort might have been.
Next, I'm supposed to post from page 56 of my manuscript. I don't have The Measure of Silence on this computer, so I'm going to post from my work in progress. And since I don't have 56 pages yet, here's the opening paragraph of Chapter 2:
Anne d’Heilly de Pisseleu, Madame d’Etampes, perched on the bottom step of the sunken pool. Her flushed skin, still hot to the touch from the steambath she had quit moments before, welcomed the cool caress of the tepid water that closed beneath her chin. Her toes curled in delight as the water buoyed her buttocks and legs off the floor; tipping back her head, she released her arms and floated on the surface of the violet-strewn water. Brightened by weekly applications of honey oil, her hair spread like a sun-spun caul, entangling blossoms and bugs alike in its strands. Except for her youngest attendant Cécile, who strummed the lute with deft fingers in the furthest corner of the room, Anne was alone. Gloriously alone.
Thanks for the chance to play, Cindy! Here are the five people I'm tagging:
Enjoy all the snippets. I hope everyone finds some new books to read!