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The Geography of Love: A Memoir by Glenda…

The Geography of Love: A Memoir

by Glenda Burgess

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
The Geography of Love: A Memoir is a love story – a love story that explores the depths of love and the way we are bound to the places we have lived. Burgess addresses with profound truth and tenderness the relationships that make us who we are: a child to our parents, a lover to our spouse, a parent to our children.

Glenda Burgess was in limbo when she met Ken Grunzweig. She had just left her job as an analyst for the State Department, a job with a generous salary and plenty of travel opportunities, to move back to her hometown of Spokane, Washington, hoping to settle down and have a family. She met Ken and the chemistry was instant. But Ken had a dark history – his first wife had been killed by a drunk driver, and his second wife was murdered. Years later, the murder remained unsolved, the case had grown cold, and Ken was still the primary suspect.

Glenda instinctively trusts Ken, knows that he is a good man. They fall into a passionate love and marriage, the kind of deep, unconditional love that everyone desires. Marriage and children follow, including many geographical moves, until they come back to Spokane, where everything started for them. It is here that they will face the biggest challenge of their lives – cancer.

I have had The Geography of Love on my to-be-read stack since the end of September, and I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to pick up. When I finally did, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Ms. Burgess is a Spokane native, and many of the places she wrote about are familiar to me. The descriptions of the northeastern Washington winters especially resonated with me, as we’re headed for another one very soon.

Ms. Burgess is an elegant writer, and this memoir explores the landscape of relationship. She deals with the heartache of a mother-daughter relationship that has always been a disappointment. The fear that an independent woman can have when letting go and diving into a marriage. The joys of parenthood, and struggles of step-parenthood. The bone deep ache of watching a loved one suffer. I found myself engrossed in the last half of this book, picking it up again and again even though I was also reading three other books. By the time I reached the last third, all other books were forgotten, as I had to know the end of the story.

As happens with other great memoirs, I find myself wondering what has happened to Ms. Burgess and her family in the past few years since the end of the story. I am so glad that she shared her love story with the world. She is also the author of two novels, two books which are being added to my to-read list. ( )
  nnjmom | May 14, 2011 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Maybe it's the way that Cancer has touched so many lives, TOO many lives. Reading a book about it, even though it's really a book about a relationship, kind of gnaws at my bones. I found myself wanting to escape from the inevitable, but yet, there I sat reading till the end. Beautiful, heartbreaking, joyful. ( )
  tiddleyboom | Jan 7, 2011 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
"The Geography of Love" is a poignant and candid exploration of the journey on which Glenda and Ken found themselves. This memoir reads easily and is a beautiful reminder of the importance of those you love. ( )
  pitzer | Jun 12, 2010 |
Glenda writes a wonderful story about love. This is a refreshing look at what love is like. I really like how she describes love as indivdual like a fingerprint and love is always new. I really like Burgess' writing style. I recommend this book as a book club group pick. ( )
  butterflybaby | Feb 25, 2010 |
This author's candid tale of what it was like to finally fall in love, enjoy it for a season, and then face its tragic end due to cancer touched my heart. Along the way she also shares about her complex family struggles with an eccentric mother and the murder of her husband's second wife. Read this one if you like family dramas and heart-melting, tear-jerking tales of love through difficulty. ( )
  debs4jc | Feb 12, 2010 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0767928709, Paperback)

When Glenda Burgess and Kenneth Grunzweig met in 1988, Kenneth had already lost two wives—the first in a fatal car crash, and then years later his second wife in a brutal murder for which Kenneth remained for many years the prime suspect.

What possesses a woman to fall in love with a man fourteen years her senior, with a troubled teenage daughter and a past shadowed with so much suspicion and misfortune? And why would a man who has loved and lost in such tragic ways take a chance on opening his heart to another woman, despite the odds?

Beautifully written and heart-wrenchingly honest,The Geography of Love is a poignant and unforgettable chronicle of a relationship that defies convention and survives the unthinkable.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:00:26 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Chronicles the author's relationship with a twice widowed man with an emotionally scarred teenage daughter, their fifteen years of marriage, and the devastating illness that challenged their resilience and strengthened their devotion to each other and their children.… (more)

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