A Map of Glass by Jane Urquhart

By Jane Urquhart

Award-winning, bestselling writer Jane Urquhart?’s eagerly expected new novel is a powerful accomplishment and her most powerful thus far. A Map of Glass weaves parallel tales, one set in modern Toronto and Prince Edward County, the opposite within the 19th century at the northern seashores of Lake Ontario. a unique approximately loss and the transitory nature of position, A Map of Glass includes all of the components for which Jane Urquhart?’s novels are celebrated. Sylvia Bradley was once rescued from her parents?’ residence by way of a physician interested in and challenged through her withdrawn methods. Their next marriage has nourished her, yet eventually her husband?’s care has shaped a type of criminal. while she meets Andrew, a ancient geographer, her global alterations. A yr after Andrew?’s loss of life, Sylvia makes a reference to Jerome, a tender conceptual artist/photographer who, whereas executing one among his outside initiatives, discovers Andrew?’s physique. After Sylvia escapes to the town, she stocks with Jerome the tale of Andrew?’s forebears, a narrative that is going again to the 19th century amidst the flourishing trees and shipbuilding industries of Lake Ontario. This tale is the breathtaking centre of A Map of Glass, an difficult novel enriched by way of moments of shiny background come to existence and haunting imagery. It stands as her richest, such a lot comprehensive novel up to now.

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Example text

It took Jerome’s mind some time to interpret the visual information being transmitted. Some of the smaller icebergs had moved closer to the island during the night and were now lined up like docked rowboats near the shore. He once again marvelled at their mysterious, irregular shapes, but this time there was something more. During their journey down streams and rivers, the icebergs had picked up and incorporated into their structures twigs and branches, as if consciously creating their own skeletons.

According to something Jerome had read, however, Smithson had come to believe the glass structure he had created was shaped like the drowned continent of Atlantis. Perhaps this explained his need to use a material that would suggest the transparency of water. But Jerome was drawn to the brilliance and the feeling of danger in the piece: the shattering of experience and the sense that one cannot play with life without being cut, injured. The sight of ice at this moment and in this place, ice rearing up against the shore of the island, the disarray of the arbitrary constructions that were made by its breakup and migration, seemed like a gift to Jerome, as if something electrical beneath the earth were sending signals to the surfaces of everything he was looking at.

He enunciates, quite clearly, the syllables of the word watershed, then straightens his shoulders, attentive to, and briefly suspicious of, the deep, bell-like sound of his own voice. He walks for some time on the hard, pale river, his left sleeve now and then brushing against the arms of snow-laden pines. Eventually his body comes to know it is exhausted and takes the decision to lie on the smooth bed of ice and snow. By now the sun is gone; it is a deep winter night of great clarity and great beauty.

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