The Secret Skin by Wendy N. Wagner is a sawmill gothic that begins with June Vogel's return to Storm Break, her family's estate. Things in the great house aren't what they used to be. Doors slam in the night. Faucets turn on, untouched. Something is always watching, whatever June does. And when her brother returns with his new bride, deceit and betrayal threaten to destroy everything she loves.
Wendy N. Wagner is the author of the horror novel The Deer Kings (forthcoming summer 2021). Her previous work includes the SF thriller An Oath of Dogs, plus two novels for the Pathfinder role-playing game, and over fifty short stories, essays, and poems. A Hugo award-winning editor of short fiction, she is also the incoming editor of Nightmare Magazine. She lives in Oregon with her very understanding family, two large cats, and a small dog that might be a Muppet. You can keep up with her at winniewoohoo.
"Blends the vivid DNA of Rebecca and Jane Eyre with a glorious, muscular queer magnificence that is all Wendy's own. Sexy, scary, compelling, incredible."
—Sam J. Miller, Nebula Award-winning author of Blackfish City
"A deeply compelling tale of family, secrets, betrayal and love at all costs. The Secret Skin caught me in its gothic spell, and kept me turning pages into the witching hours."
—Nebula Award-winning author Kelly Robson
"A beautifully written piece of gothic horror, suffused with all the peculiarities of the 1920s in coastal Oregon. Pitch perfect language combines with the brilliant decision to make our narrator both the governess and the inheritor of the manor, a masterful twist on genre tropes."
—Caitlin Starling, author of The Death of Jane Lawrence
"The Secret Skin is kind of what might happen if you crossed 'The Fall of the House of Usher' with Rebecca, supplemented the result with a child with supernatural powers, and transported it all to the Pacific Northwest. A lively, wild novella, with a nice dark edge to it."
—Brian Evenson, author of A Collapse of Horses and The Warren
"Wagner's eerie, gorgeously rendered tale goes all in on gothic decadence...The evocative prose and insightful heroine make this a treasure."
"Perfect for reading on a rainy night, Rebecca meets The Turn of the Screw in this jewel-box of a novella by Wendy Wagner."
—Molly Tanzer, author of Creatures of Will and Temper