Sharon Oard Warner
Sharon Oard Warner, professor of English and founder/director of the Taos Summer Writers' Conference, is the author of a new UNM Press title, "Sophie's House of Cards."
Credit: Teddy Warner

University of New Mexico Professor of English Sharon Oard Warner is the author of the new book, "Sophie's House of Cards," published by the UNM Press. 

“Perhaps it’s a trick of the imagination, but the house of cards seems to glow, filling the murky room with all th e available light. Peggy sighs. Life is sweeter, she thinks, when you take it one day at a time, one hour at a time, this moment and then the next. No one is less interested in the future than a middle-aged woman. Than this middle-aged woman. Still, her heart lifts a little as she says the words: ‘If I had to guess, I’d say you’re pregnant.’ Sophie pinches the cards, yellow sky to yellow sky, and holds them, trembling, above a fragile foundation. She doesn’t look up, but she gives a slight nod. ‘I think you’re right,’ she replies." 

— from Sophie’s House of Cards

When sixteen-year-old Sophie Granger suspects she is pregnant, she digs out her mother Peggy’s tarot cards. Peggy hasn’t read fortunes since her hippie days in Taos, but as soon as she flips the cards, Peggy sees both her daughter’s predicament and the family crisis that will ensue. A panicked Peggy scatters the layout and rushes from the room, leaving Sophie to construct a literal house of cards. Set in New Mexico, this engrossing family novel raises questions about the role that fortune plays in our lives.

Warner is the author of Learning to Dance and Other Stories and the novel Deep in the Heart. She is also editor of The Way We Write Now: Short Stories from the AIDS Crisis. Warner is both founder and director of the Taos Summer Writers’ Conference.