Available exclusive to the Kindle, the protagonist of Bell’s Prey trained dogs to protect their keepers, and Maggie, a mixed breed, was stocky, strong, and fiercely loyal. But then he met the woman who bought the dog. Cécile Fontenot, a study in black and silver, wearing thigh-high boots that left a couple of inches of expensive skin on view below the hem of her skirt. Her jacket resembled a riding coat, and she actually held a black malacca swagger stick in one of her ethereal hands. Her hair was so pale it was almost white, and in truth, she was so beautiful that she didn’t look ridiculous. And she thought of Maggie as an expensive prop in a life of tradition and leisure. He thought she needed a lesson in humility, an awareness of her fragile place in the cosmos.
Madison Smartt Bell is the author of twelve novels, including The Washington Square Ensemble (1983), Waiting for the End of the World (1985), Straight Cut (1986), The Year of Silence (1987), Doctor Sleep (1991), Save Me, Joe Louis (1993), Ten Indians (1997) and Soldier's Joy, which received the Lillian Smith Award in 1989. Bell has also published two collections of short stories: Zero db (1987) and Barking Man (1990). In 2002, the novel Doctor Sleep was adapted as a film, Close Your Eyes. Forty Words For Fear, an album of songs co-written by Bell and Wyn Cooper and inspired by the novel Anything Goes, was released by Gaff Music in 2003. Bell's eighth novel, All Soul's Rising, was a finalist for the 1995 National Book Award and the 1996 PEN/Faulkner Award and winner of the 1996 Anisfield-Wolf award for the best book of the year dealing with matters of race. All Souls Rising, along with the second and third novels of his Haitian Revolutionary trilogy, Master of the Crossroads and The Stone That The Builder Refused, is available in a uniform edition from Vintage Contemporaries. Toussaint Louverture: A Biography, appeared in 2007. Devil's Dream, a novel based on the career of Nathan Bedford Forrest, was published by Pantheon in 2009. Born and raised in Tennessee, he has lived in New York and in London and now lives in Baltimore, Maryland. A graduate of Princeton University (A.B 1979) and Hollins College (M.A. 1981), he has taught in various creative writing programs, including the Iowa Writers' Workshop and the Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars. Since 1984 he has taught at Goucher College, along with his wife, the poet Elizabeth Spires. He has been a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers since 2003.