When Mountains Walked by Kate Wheeler

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Named a "Best Young American Novelist" by GRANTA, Kate Wheeler received numerous awards and the highest critical acclaim for her story collection, NOT WHERE I STARTED FROM. Francine Prose wrote, "This is a book you mention to your friends . . . Wheeler is a writer to follow, wherever she chooses to travel." In her much anticipated first novel, Wheeler takes readers to opposite ends of the earth in a story of passions that weaves together past and present. WHEN MOUNTAINS WALKED tells of two parallel love affairs, years apart, in places as remote as the deepest canyon in the world, as vast as the Indian desert. In the 1940s, Althea Baines follows her seismologist husband to the heart of the Indian subcontinent to trace the origins of earthquakes. Here, awakening to a form of spirituality she had never imagined, she eventually finds solace with a Hindu priest. Years later, her granddaughter Maggie follows her own idealistic husband to a canyon in central Peru to set up a health clinic. Alive to the culture and the place, Maggie falls recklessly in love with a revolutionary leader and follows him on an apocalyptic trip into the rain forest. The lives of the older and younger woman echo and illuminate each other as each gets swept up in her own time by powerful forces. This is a novel about love and compromise, about the difficulties of establishing an identity in the midst of extravagant desires. Like Wheeler's short stories, WHEN MOUNTAINS WALKED features American women seeking love and enlightenment in distant parts of the world. As the NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW said of her, "Wheeler has a capacity for compressing the insights of cross-cultural dislocation into deliciously memorable epiphanies." Romantic and wise, evocative and compassionate, WHEN MOUNTAINS WALKED reaffirms Kate Wheeler's reputation as one of our most captivating writers.

About Kate Wheeler

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Kate Wheeler was named a "Best Young American Novelist" by Granta. Raised in South America, her debut collection, NOT WHERE I STARTED FROM, was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and was named a New York Times Notable Book. She is the recipient of a Whiting Award, an NEA fellowship, and a Guggenheim fellowship. She writes regularly for THE NEW YORK TIMES' "Sophisticated Traveler," OUTSIDE, and TRICYCLE.
Published February 17, 2000 by Mariner Books. 396 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Assigned to Peru as health care workers, Maggie Goodwin and her husband, Carson, find themselves in Piedras, a remote, primitive village set in a deep river canyon, not far from where, 60 years earlier, Maggie's grandmother, Althea, and her husband, seismologist Johnny Baines, suffered the traged...

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