A: Until recently, the answer would have been No. But last month while I was at Wildacres, I read The Day of Small Things (and found it better than I remembered.) And yesterday afternoon, when the bound galleys (these are what get sent to early reviewers) of Under the Skin arrived, I began to page through, just to see how it looked in print, and somehow found myself caught up with the characters and unable to put the book down.
Ridiculous! I hear you saying. And of course, I know what the story is and how it ends -- I did write it after all.
But I think that what caught me is that in this, the fifth book in the series, Elizabeth finally seems like her own self, rather than my creation. For the first time, Elizabeth speaks in first person point of view and she's a somewhat different Elizabeth that the woman in the first four books. I found her somewhat unexpected.
As I've mentioned before, when I finally complete a book and send it off to my editor, I'm sick of it and never want to read it again. But, of course, I have to -- slowly and carefully during the various stages of editing. And this kind of reading -- looking for errors -- is serious no fun and once again, I feel if I never have to read these words in this particular order again, it will be okay by me.
It's been about a year however, since I struggled through the last proofreading of Under the Skin. And this time I was reading fast and for fun - no looking for errors (though I did note one page where I'd used the word smile or some variation thereof three times in quick succession.)
But on the whole I'm quite pleased. And I hope fans of Elizabeth will be.
Now, about these bound galleys. Most are spoken for for but I'd like to do a little drawing for two of them. If you'd like to be entered, just say so here in the comments or send me an email saying so. I'll draw two names Sunday evening and post the winner on Monday.