Author(s): Ilka Tampke
For the people of Caer Cad, 'skin' is their totem, their greeting, their ancestors, their land
Ailia does not have skin. Abandoned at birth, she serves the Tribequeen of her township. Ailia is not permitted to marry, excluded from tribal ceremonies and, most devastatingly, forbidden to learn. But the Mothers, the tribal ancestors, have chosen her for another path
Lured by the beautiful and enigmatic Taliesin, Ailia embarks on an unsanctioned journey to attain the knowledge that will protect her people from the most terrifying invaders they have ever faced.
Set in Iron-Age Britain on the cusp of Roman invasion, Skin is a thrilling, full-blooded, mesmerising novel about the collision of two worlds, and a young woman torn between two men.
Fans of Juliet Marillier will enjoy this, the first of two novels by Ilka Tampke set in Iron-Age Britain, in the time of the druids. The novel is beautifully written but does not shy away from the brutality of Pagan rituals that were adhered to at the time. The book is a very compelling story that delves into the life of Ailia, a young woman who was abandoned as a baby and does not know her parentage or, most importantly, her 'skin' - her totem. For her people, 'skin' enables people to marry, be educated and be a part of important ceremonies, even to have a soul when they die. Despite having none of these privileges, Ailia is determined to learn, to venture into sacred and forbidden territories in her search for the truth, and for the man she loves who seems caught between two worlds - the spiritual place of the Mothers and the physical realm. Ailia is compelled on a journey which leads her to question the very meaning of 'skin', identity, belonging, and the path of her people on the cusp of Roman invasion. A wonderful read. Jemma
* Author interviews in broadsheet and tabloid newspapers such as the Herald Sun * Feature interviews and review coverage in women's glossy magazines and online * Review coverage in broadsheet and tabloid newspapers * Author interviews on local ABC and community radio programmes * Bound proofs available to the trade with a letter from the editor * Advertisements in literary and current affairs publications such as the Monthly and on their associated websites * Online promotions with targeted subscriber groups, including book lovers as Good Reading, Good Reads and the Reading Room * Online advertising on book lover websites such as BookRiot * Significant budget for bookseller catalogues * Advertisements in bookseller newsletters * Feature title in Text newsletters and website * Major social media campaign including dedicated Twitter and Facebook competitions and targeted advertising on Goodreads * Book club notes available for download at www.textpublishing.com.au
Ilka Tampke was awarded a Glenfern Fellowship in 2012. Her short stories and articles have been published in several anthologies. She lives in Woodend, Australia. Skin is her first novel.