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The Slow Moon


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About the Author

Elizabeth Cox is the author of Night Talk, The Ragged Way People Fall Out of Love, Familiar Ground, and the story collection Bargains in the Real World. She is an instructor at the Bennington Graduate Writing Seminars and teaches at Wofford College in South Carolina, where she shares the John Cobb Chair of the Humanities with her husband, C. Michael Curtis. She lives in Spartanburg, South Carolina. From the Hardcover edition.


Adult/High School-In a voice reminiscent of Alice Hoffman's, Cox weaves a story of love, sex, and scandal in a small Southern town. She deals with the issues of rape and infidelity thoughtfully and sensitively. Like people in many small towns, the folks of South Pittsburg, TN, have known one another for too long. They believe that there is nothing new to learn-until Sophie and Rita Chabot move in. Everyone at the local high school has a thing for Sophie. She is beautiful, artistic, and friendly. Rita, her newly widowed mother, is a provocative influence on both the men and their wives at the local hardware store. Change is good until the teen is brutally gang-raped after a party. And so starts a complicated tale of hidden truths, lost love, and enduring spirit. Cox's portrayal of awkward first love carries the novel beyond its dark subject matter, invoking, as does life, both grief and cheer. Told nonlinearly, the story focuses on the characters, leaving readers to try to predict who committed the vicious crime. Teens will be drawn to Sophie, her boyfriend, and the members of his band. Many will recognize, if not themselves, then people they know in real life.-Brigeen Radoicich, Fresno County Office of Education, CA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Cox's carefully wrought latest (following Familiar Ground) delineates the heartbreaking cruelty that sunders a group of adolescent friends in a small Tennessee town. During a late-night party, high school sweethearts Sophie and Crow go off into the woods. When Crow leaves Sophie for 20 minutes to fetch a condom, she's raped and beaten by a group of boys she will not be able to identify after the trauma. To the shock of the town, Crow, known to be a fine and upstanding young man, is charged with her attack. Cox painstakingly enters the consciousness of the various characters who have a stake in Crow's fate, including his diffident, religious mother, Helen, and adulterous stepfather, Carl; Crow's younger brother, Johnny, who struggles to come to terms with his homosexual attraction for Tom, one of the boys in Crow's band; the judge adjudicating Crow's case, Aurelia Bailey, who has to manage her own troubled teenage boy, Bobbie; and other teens and townsfolk. The fact of Crow's innocence is plain to all, yet no one moves to defend him, not even Sophie, who claims she can't remember what happened. Cox stands back and lets the truth emerge with quiet determination. (Aug. 8) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Advance praise for The Slow Moon

"I found myself pausing over the beauty of this book, and wishing I'd been the one to think of it."
-Jodi Picoult, author of The Tenth Circle "Beautifully written and sympathetically imagined, The Slow Moon tells its all-too-timely story without a shred of the sensational or strident. Elizabeth Cox has a sensitive touch, and she brings to rich life a deeply tangled web of characters. This is the kind of book you will read in one long, rewarding sitting."
-Rosellen Brown, author of Tender Mercies and Before and After "Elizabeth Cox writes with assurance, style, and heart. She also does something that is a reader's delight, which is to take risks-successfully. Anytime Elizabeth Cox writes a book, I'll read it."
-Elizabeth Berg, author of We Are All Welcome Here and The Year of Pleasures "I am always searching for the perfect read: A combination of eloquent sentences and a gripping narrative, and I was simply entranced by The Slow Moon. Each character is fully alive, and I savored discovering how one mistake transforms their town. This book is heartbreaking and hopeful."
-Amanda Eyre Ward, author of How to Be Lost

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