Washington Writers' Publishing HouseWashington Writers' Publishing House

Catherine Bell

Catherine Bell grew up in a New England family with a sense of its past as distinguished and its culture superior, as chronicled in many of her short stories. An early reader, she found in fiction the penetrating experience of other people’s lives that opens a wider world. The Windsor School Harvard and Stanford prepared her to recognize good writing and thinking. She credits work as a gardener, cook, cashier, waitress and school bus driver with teaching her how to live in that wider world. She has also worked as a secretary, freelance writer, and therapist, served as a teacher in the Peace Corps, and taught in inner-city schools. She has published stories in Midway Journal, Cool City Review, Green Hills Literary Lantern, Sixfold, Solstice and South Carolina Review,among other journals. She researched and wrote Rush of Shadows, her first novel, over a period of twenty years after she married a fourth-generation Californian and fell in love with his home territory, the Coast Range. For more information, including upcoming readings and events, visit her website.


A vividly imagined historical drama of racial tension on America’s last frontier. From its first line — “it was a beautiful country, though I hated and feared it” — Bell’s is a nuanced, intelligently crafted debut. This complex, confident novel introduces a promising new voice in historical fiction
— Kirkus Reviews

There are some books that you tear through at a rapid pace, not caring about the writing because you have to know what happens and you have to know right now. Then there are books that are so beautiful that you want to draw out the reading experience as long as possible. You only read a chapter or two because you want to enjoy it for as long as you can. This is the latter kind of book. It is a story to savor….More than any other book I’ve read, Rush of Shadows allows me to imagine what life was like for the early settlers.—The San Francisco Book Review

Comments are closed.