Saturday, April 30, 2011

Coming October 18 (New, earlier date!)

Under the Skin  (available for preorder now) will be out October 18. Over in the sidebar is a list of places I'll be reading and signing -- there may be more to come.  

And that's the cover up there -- more or less. There'll be a different quote -- that one's just a place holder.

WAIT A MINUTE! There have been some exciting changes. Random House has decided to release UNDER THE SKIN as a trade paperback -- the larger, nicer format.  It will be out October 18, not 25. and there will be a different cover. At the moment (6/20) you can only preorder the ebook version on line but that should change very soon.
One other thing. Notice how they call it "A Full Circle Farm Mystery?"  Don't be confused; it's still an Elizabeth Goodweather mystery -- Marketing just liked the sound of this better. (I don't but Marketing doesn't care.)

Here's a taste of the beginning:

A sister can be seen as someone who is both ourselves and very much not ourselves - a special kind of double.  ~Toni Morrison

I don't believe an accident of birth makes people sisters or brothers.  It makes them siblings, gives them mutuality of parentage.  Sisterhood and brotherhood is a condition people have to work at.  ~Maya Angelou

 Chapter 1 ~ A Complicated Person                                                           

                        “I should have known Gloria would come up with something like this right before our wedding. It’s just like her. I swear, she’s . . .”
                         . . . crazy as the proverbial shithouse rat were the words on the tip of my tongue but I bit them back.
                        Without looking up from the paperback he was reading, Phillip made a questioning sort of sound. “Hmm? . . .  What was that, Lizabeth? Gloria’s what?”
                        I dropped the phone onto the table and glowered at it as if it were responsible for this new and unwelcome twist in my life. “She’s . . . complicated,” I hedged, rejecting the coarse country phrase, apt though it might be.  “Complicated’ – which is a polite way of saying I don’t understand her at all. She must be-”  
                        I couldn’t go on. But the voice in my head, never at a loss for words, finished the sentence for me, She must be out of her rabbit-ass mind, as Ben would say.
                         I stood there glaring at the innocent telephone. It’s not FAIR!  I wanted to shout, in a whining echo from my childhood. Glory always messes everything up!  I wanted to throw something, to stamp my foot, to fling myself to the floor and have a screaming, kicking tantrum.
                         Instead, I made a strenuous effort to sound composed and adult as I tried to explain things to the back of Phillip’s head.
“It’s just that with all the farm work right now, not to mention getting things ready for the wedding next month, this isn’t exactly a good time for anyone to come for an open-ended visit, especially Gloria . . . she’s so bloody high maintenance.”
            All the old feelings were just below the surface: bitterness, guilt, annoyance, a touch of envy, and guilt again – an evil stew of emotion ready to break into a full boil.
Not attractive, Elizabeth, I warned that nasty inner child who was still quivering with righteous indignation. Aren’t you about forty years too old for this kind of adolescent reaction to your only sister . . . your only sibling?
I took a deep breath, forcing myself into the mind set of rationality and general benevolence that I like to pretend comes naturally. Usually, it does. But now . . . oh, why the hell does my sister always bring out the worst in me?  
Two more deep breaths and I was able to say, “On the other hand, if things are so bad between Gloria and her husband . . .”
I was thinking out loud now, trying to make sense of the just-ended conversation and trying also to ignore the tag-line from Tennyson that was running through my head – “‘The curse is come upon me,’ cried the Lady of Shallot.”
. “ . .  . if it’s so bad that she’s actually contemplating staying here for a month or longer, what can I do? And things must be seriously awful. Glory hates it here at the farm – ‘too much Nature,’ she always says, as if Nature was something you wouldn’t want to step in.”
                         Phillip, comfortable on the sofa with a dog on either side of him, his sock feet up on the old cedar chest that serves as a coffee table, finally looked up from his after-supper book with that calm, amused expression he’s so good at.
                          “This guy – he’s what – your sister’s third husband? So problems with married life aren’t entirely new to her. What’s the big deal this time?”  
                          He wouldn’t be so calm and amused if he had any idea of what Glory’s like, I thought, wondering if this could be some elaborate joke of hers. But the thing is – my sister has no sense of humor. None. Never has.
                         “Well,” I told him, thinking at the same time that, after all his patient courtship, Phillip deserved better than this, “according to Gloria, the problem is that Jerry’s trying to kill her.”


  1. October! And not the 1st of October either - the 25th! It's been on pre-order for a while now and I've been looking forward to it. And after having read this teaser, I can't wait!

  2. Yeah, I know. I hate it that it's so late. But it's not up to me...

  3. Oh, I can't wait for this one Vicki! It sounds like it's gonna be a good book. Making hubby get it for my birthday in October!

  4. OK Vicki. You're going to make me break out of my mould and dip into this latest novel of will be the first fiction I have read in more than 20 years! I love the cover picture. It makes me want to follow that road to wherever it leads but also to stop and explore the sidetracks along the way :)

  5. Can't the cover! I plan to re-read Dark Season just prior to the release! XOXO

  6. I am looking forward to reading this new book of yours! Now i am rereading your other books. So Elizabeth and Phillip are going to be married! Finally!!

  7. Thank you for sharing part of your book. Kinda "wets one's whistle" for more.

  8. This sounds like a great read! Thanks for the share. Certainly piques my curiosity!