About the book:
The morning Bill Becker awakes to find the butterfly tattoo bleeding on his chest, his upwardly mobile life begins its harrowing downward spiral. Exiled from a corporate career and from the failed marriage he left behind in a gated Charlotte community, Bill becomes obsessed with a tattooed dancer named Lucy, who is running from a trauma buried deep in her own past. Lucy and Bill wrap themselves in new skins of ink, wrought by the same artist, a “shaman” who convinces them that every design will alter their future. Ultimately, both Bill and Lucy must leave the city and return to the Carolina countryside to confront the skins they have shed many years ago.
“The Skin Artist is the complex saga of a young man’s search for his own identity on the dark side of the New South–it’s hard to believe this is a first novel. Hovis has created an old-fashioned morality tale set against some of the most garish manifestations of the Sunbelt.” –Lee Smith, author of Dimestore and Guests on Earth