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In this exquisite debut novel, Mary
Emerick takes readers into the watery
landscape of southeast Alaska and the
depths of a family in crisis.
An abusive father and a broken
home force a teenage Winnie to seek
the safety of a neighboring bay and a
pair of unlikely father figures. Years
later her mother goes missing, and Winnie
returns to the hunting and fishing
lodge she grew up in to find the world
she knew gone. Her once-powerful father
disfigured by a bear attack. Her
childhood hero revealed as merely human.
And her mother’s story rewritten
by a stray note.
As Winnie uses the help of friends
to sort out the details of her mother’s final
exodus, she finds herself pulled into
a murky swirl of family secrets and devastating
revelations. As the search heads
higher into the mountains, Winnie must
learn to depend on her own strength in
order to reach the one she loves.
The Geography of Water is a haunting blend of shadows and secrets, a story about Alaska, yes, but also about how wild places can dig down inside the blood, dare us to dive down and discover our own hidden stories.
—Alaska Dispatch News
Mary Emerick spent seven years as a kayak ranger in Southeast Alaska, traveling the wild and remote coasts of Chichagof and Baranof Islands in a small boat. She has published essays and short stories in several magazines and anthologies. She lives in northeast Oregon where she works for the US Forest Service.