In an unusual twist, HarperCollins executive editor Dan Conaway found an agent for a Canadian author living in New York (whose book has just become a Canadian bestseller), then bought her book from the agent. The author is British Columbia native Rebecca Godfrey, whose The Torn Skirt is a literary chiller about a desperate teenager in picturesque Victoria, British Columbia, teetering on the edge of disaster. The agent involved was Emma Parry at Carlisle & Company, who took her on at Conaway's urging after editor Iris Tupholme at Harper Canada had urged his help in finding her a U.S. outlet. "She's going to be a star," says Conaway, who plans to publish next fall.