New in Paperback! August 4, 2009 release of the critically acclaimed memoir THE GEOGRAPHY OF LOVE.
Glenda gives an overview of the book:
Excerpted from THE GEOGRAPHY OF LOVE by Glenda Burgess. Copyright @ 2008 by Glenda Burgess. Excerpted by permission of Broadway Books, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing form the publishers.
THE GEOGRAPHY OF LOVE by Glenda Burgess
Physicists say we are made of stardust. Intergalactic debris and far-flung atoms, shards of carbon nanomatter rounded up by gravity to circle the sun. As atoms pass through an eternal revolving door of possible form, energy and mass dance in fluid relationship. We are stardust, we are man, we are thought. We are story.
“It’s always a story, my girl,” my father told me one summer evening when I was young. “Falling stars, rings in a tree trunk, the river as it swells by, all stories.”
We were camping in the wilderness north of Vancouver, Washington, along the pebble shoals of the Lewis River. It was an hour after sunset, and the sky was deepening to an inky lavender at the edge of the black canopy of trees. We crouched beside the water, washing up after a quick dinner of cowboy stew. I asked him what made stars shoot. At nine years old, I was ready for real explanations, heavy truth, clues and answers to bigger mysteries than long division. My father had studied physics as a young man. I knew he would take my question seriously.
He reached behind him to loosen a flat river stone and skipped it out across the burbling rapids. Please, I begged silently, tell me the truth. I knew with deep inner conviction that the way my father answered my question would somehow affect the way I asked and answered questions the rest of my life.
He tossed out another stone as he considered the darkening sky.
“Just a bit of chance and chaos, Sunshine,” he said. “Atoms that dance.”
I think back to that long ago conversation as I ponder the effects of luck and disaster on the human heart. A child then, I had no real awareness of human fragility, but I absolutely knew shooting stars pirouetted across the universe. Life, my search for truth, seemed dusted by a dash of magic.
Only now in the wake of fortune, do I truly understand.
"I read Glenda Burgess' poignant and harrowing memoir, THE GEOGRAPHY OF LOVE, in one sitting-- in one breath -- and all I had ever felt about love's ability to vanquish everything, to swallow heartbreak, to correct history, Burgess makes us believe. And in a fashion that...