The Fiction of Owen Thomas

Emerging Indie Authors

DEB VANASSE: “Cold Spell”

Emerging Indie Author:

Deb Vanasse

Latest Release:

“Cold Spell”


University of Alaska Press (August 15, 2014)

Short Description:

Cold Spell tells the story of a mother who risks everything to start over and a daughter whose longings threaten to undo them both.

From the moment Ruth Sanders rips a glossy photo of a glacier from a magazine, she believes her fate is intertwined with the ice. Her unsettling fascination bewilders her daughter, sixteen-year-old Sylvie, still shaken by her father’s leaving. When Ruth uproots Sylvie and her sister from their small Midwestern town to follow her growing obsession—and a man—to Alaska, they soon find themselves entangled with an unfamiliar wilderness, a divided community, and one another. As passions cross and braid, the bond between mother and daughter threatens to erode from the pressures of icy compulsion and exposed secrets.

Inspired by her own experience arriving by bush plane to live on the Alaska tundra, Deb Vanasse vividly captures the reality of life in Alaska and the emotional impact of loving a remote and unforgiving land.

Representative Reviews:

“Grabs you from the opening line and never lets go.” – Publishers Weekly

“Vanasse is talented: she can turn ordinary words into the sublime… Readers who enjoy richly drawn characters trying to make sense of their surroundings will enjoy this cool and refreshing, yet haunting, glimpse of flawed souls.” – Foreword Reviews

“Captures the harsh beauty of the terrain as well as the strain of self-doubt and complicated family bonds.” – Booklist

“By one of Alaska’s leading storytellers . . . complicated family and community dynamics, death, teenage drama, and the pressures of living a subsistence lifestyle in a tiny isolated town.” – Library Journal

Author Bio:

Deb Vanasse is the author of more than a dozen books, most recently No Returns and Black Wolf of the Glacier, the latter also from University of Alaska Press. She is cofounder of the 49 Alaska Writing Center. She lives in Eagle River, Alaska.

Available Formats:

Paperback, ebook, Audiobook

Links to Purchase:


Barnes & Noble: Cold Spell

Kobo:  Cold Spell

Powell’s: Cold Spell

Indie Bound: Cold Spell

Audible: Cold Spell

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