Cover image for Snow garden : a novel
Snow garden : a novel
Rice, Christopher, 1978-
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Hyperion, [2001]

Physical Description:
406 pages ; 25 cm
General Note:
"Talk Miramax books."
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Adult Fiction Central Library

On Order



Christopher Rice became a publishing sensation overnight with his rst novel, A Density of Souls. The stunningly wide-ranging coverage included appearances on The Rosie ODonnell Show, MTVs Real World, and The Early Show, print features in everything from USA Today to The Advocate, and a website deluged with e-mails from fans. One of the most original writers of a new generation was launched. His new novel, The Snow Garden, is a story of murder and sexual menace on a snowbound university campus. When a respected professors wife drives to her death in an icy river, an illicit relationship between a student and his teacher threatens to come to light, and within days Atherton University is the scene of escalating speculation and intrigue. Another death emerges from the shadows, and the connections between the two accidents begin to look uncomfortably close. As in A Density of Souls, Christopher Rice explores the dynamic within a tightly knit group of young people haunted by sexual memories and fears and driven by obscure desires. The Snow Garden casts this web of friendship and passion against the backdrop of a threat that grows darker as the novel proceeds. The result is a stunning new novel from an arresting talent.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Although they have only been at Atherton College for a few months, freshmen Randall Stone and Kathryn Parker are already the best of friends. Despite their closeness, both guard their pasts fiercely, even from each other. Randall is having an affair with Eric Eberman, his married art-history professor. When Eric's neglected wife, Lisa, crashes her car into a bridge and is killed, Eric is consumed by guilt. Although Lisa's death is ruled an accident because she was drunk and on medication at the time, Randall is suspicious and uses an ex-boyfriend, Tim, a reporter for the student newspaper, to help him with his investigation. Kathryn, ignorant of Randall's affair, is dealing with problems of her own when she meets Mitchell, a handsome but cold teaching assistant for Eric's art-history class. Mitchell seems interested in Kathryn and tries to draw out the story of her past. Meanwhile, the more Randall searches for the truth about Lisa's death, the more he becomes convinced that Eric might very well have killed her. In his second novel, the author, who is the son of novelist Anne Rice and poet Stan Rice, expertly builds suspense. An enthralling narrative that is certain to be as popular as his first book, A Density of Souls (2000). --Kristine Huntley

Publisher's Weekly Review

Life imitates art imitates late-night cable TV in Rice's second college gothic novel (after A Density of Souls). Set in the histrionic, pansexual pharmacopoeia that is freshman year at fictional Atherton University, it follows the secret dramas of Kathryn, a San Francisco waif on the run from dark sexual secrets back home; her black, militant lesbian roommate, April; her best friend, Randall, a mysterious, gay, Gucci-clad prince; his roommate, Jesse, an enigmatic and apparently irresistible (straight? bi? predatory?) sex god; Tim, gay muckraker for the campus paper; and Dr. Eric Eberman, an art history professor with a theory about Hieronymus Bosch which, the author seems to suggest, has something to do with the plot. Eberman is sleeping with Randall, and the news of his wife's sudden demise makes for a panicky recall of events of nearly 20 years ago. Randall, having just broken up with Tim, is finding it harder and harder to resist Jesse's mysterious magnetism, but in order to find out whether Eric is a murderer, starts sleeping with Tim again to probe Eric's past. Kathryn finds herself drawn to one of Eric's misfit grad students, and April, who seems to exist merely to counterbalance the XY pH of the overall bitches' brew of the book, makes an observation about Kathryn that might well be applied to the author himself: "... you like drama. Epic, who-shot-JR drama." Said tendency muddles what might otherwise have been a decent gay-themed mystery, but readers may not want to relive freshman year for 400 pages in order to learn whodunit. Agent, Lynn Nesbit. (Feb. 13) Forecast: The son of Anne and Stan has enough of a following to guarantee respectable sales, bolstered by a 15-city author tour, national advertising and a teaser chapter in the paperback of A Density of Souls. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Son of the bewitching Anne Rice, the author follows his first novel, A Density of Souls, with a second that is just as rife with murder, fear, madness, and homoeroticism. Unfortunately, it is also a histrionic hodgepodge, all set on a snowbound college campus in the Northeast. Respected Atherton University professor Eric Eberman seems devastated when his wife, Lisa, drives her Volvo into the icy Atherton River and drowns. Was it a drunken accident or suicide? This question and many more erupt into scandal when the small university town discovers that Professor Eberman has been sleeping with one of his male students, Randall Stone. Randall comes to suspect that Lisa's death was not accidental, and subsequently he and his tightly knit group of college friends go through tremendous amounts of angst, haunted by sexual desires and obscure fears and just generally all worked up. Rice tries to imbue this pretty much plotless novel with an aura of foreboding, but it just ends up being tiresome. Stick with mom. Rebecca House Stankowski, Purdue Univ. Calumet Lib., Hammond, IN (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.