The Slow Moon page image

Crow hurried through the woods toward the parking lot. There must have been ten cars parked there. He found his car, opened the glove compartment, and grabbed a package of condoms. For one brief instant he wondered if they should go through with this. He already felt foolish. But Sophie was waiting for him. Her hair and mouth, her skin that smelled like oranges. He started toward the woods.

But at that moment, he heard a pickup drive into the lot, a group of girls laughing. He ducked down beside the car. When they laughed, he thought they had seen him in his underwear, were going to make fun of him, but they were only teasing each other. They got out of the truck and lit cigarettes. He was going to have to stay until they left. He recognized their voices.

-- From the novel


On an early Spring night in 1991, Sophie and Crow slip away from a rowdy high school party and drift into the woods, buzzing with anticipation. Tonight, for the first time, they will make love. But an hour later, Sophie is lying unconscious in the dirt, and Crow is crashing through the underbrush, hurling himself into the river to hide from the police, and then staggering home...alone. Despite Crow's frantic claims of innocence, evidence at the scene suggests his guilt. And Sophie, by now awake in the hospital, refuses to speak.

How did this idyllic evening turn into such a nightmare? Who really attacked Sophie, and what made Crow flee? And how does this violent incident in a seemingly placid Tennessee town reverberate throughout the community? These are the questions that pulse through THE SLOW MOON (Random House; August 8, 2006) and with each answer comes a new set of questions.

Elizabeth Cox's vibrant and lyrical narrative revisits the events leading up to the fateful night, then shows how the tragedy reverberates throughout the community -- among parents, friends, teachers, and neighbors-all connected to the young lovers, all with a stake in what happens next. As growing suspicions divide the town, a closer look reveals that everyone has something to hide.

A compelling and passionate page-turner THE SLOW MOON is a haunting story of innocence lost, lives betrayed, and the courage required to face the truth.


"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...this is the kind of book you will read in one long, rewarding sitting.

—Rosellen Brown, author of TENDER MERCIES and BEFORE AND AFTER

Cox unravels the tangled uncertainties beneath the surfaces of her character's lives with unusual delicacy...Quietly poetic.

—Baltimore Sun

"Elizabeth Cox explores the weighty themes of homosexuality, infidelity, and racism that resonate far beyond the borders of south Pittsburg, Tennessee and into Anytown, U.S.A.... Boasting tautly interwoven story lines and a genuine sense of suspenseā€¦The Slow Moon is no slow read."

—Chicago Sun-Times