Beneath a Winter Noon

Beneath a Winter Noon is a novel in progress. Each episode, as it is published over time, can be accessed via Amazon’s Kindle Vella platform. The novel opens with the 16-year-old narrator, Phoebe Whittaker, traveling to the farm of relations she barely knows, but they have asked for her help and she believes it is the decent thing to do. It is 1910, and a beastly hot day in July. Phoebe feels ready to see more of the world, although cooking and cleaning for ailing relatives wasn’t what she had in mind. To pass the time, she reads from her favorite book and envies the adventures of that “trouble-sporting” boy Huck Finn.

In this work I bring together two of my favorite characters, from among the many I’ve created. Whit Houndstooth is a character in another novel (to be published probably in 2023). Phoebe, the narrator of Beneath a Winter Noon, is essentially transplanted from my novel An Untimely Frost (2014). She has a small, reoccurring part in that book, which is set in London, and is generally known only as “the waif.” Even though she is a minor character, I enjoyed writing the scenes that she is part of very much. For a long while I’ve been thinking of putting “the waif” front and center in her own narrative. Phoebe Whittaker is a slightly older, American version of “the waif.”

The first ten episodes — “The Market,” “The Visitation,” “The Night Sky,” “The Bridge,” “The Metropolis,” “The Enchantment,” “The Willow,” “The Poet,” “The Performance,” and “The Predicament” — are now available. Link to Beneath a Winter Noon.