April 14, 2020
Advance Praise for northernmost
Northernmost fascinated me with its frozen landscapes and Arctic winters, and it warmed me with the tenderness of its storytelling and humanity of its characters. Peter Geye has written a tremendously satisfying family saga about the tenacity of love amid the unpredictable, ungovernable forces that act on our lives.
—Maggie Shipstead, author of Seating Arrangements and Astonish Me
We might as well give Peter Geye the Nobel Prize for winter, or declare him the poet laureate of snow. For no other writer so skillfully captures landscapes of glacier and tundra—both their bleakness and their particular beauty. To read him is to feel the ache of a blizzard on your skin. But in Northernmost, he has also given us an exhilarating tale of adventure and love and heartache and faith, a story of overcoming the most trying ordeals imaginable. Partly a tale of heroic survival, partly a meticulously researched history, and partly an epic romance, Northernmost is, most of all, a beautiful, big-hearted, triumphant novel.
—Nathan Hill, author of The Nix
A thrilling ode to both the spirit of adventure and the timeless vagaries of human love
In 1897 Norway, Odd Einar Eide returns home from a near-death experience in the arctic only to discover his funeral in full effect. His wife Inger, stunned to see him alive, is slow to warm back up to him, having spent many sleepless nights convinced she had lost both him and their daughter, Thea, who traveled to America two years before and has not sent even one letter back. But just as they are reconnecting, a sensationalist journalist gets wind of Odd Einar’s remarkable tale of survival and invites them to Tromsø so he can properly report on what he is sure will be a bestselling story, complicating Odd Einar and Inger’s reunion further.
In 2017 Minnesota, Greta Nansen has finally begun to admit to herself that her marriage is over. Desperately unhappy and unfulfilled, she makes the decision to leave her children at home with her father and follow her husband, the descendant himself of Norway’s most famous explorer, to Oslo, where he has traveled for work, to end it once and for all. But on impulse she diverts her travels to Hammerfest, the town of her ancestors, the town where her great-great grandmother Thea was born, for reasons unbeknownst to even her.
A dual narrative told by two family members generations apart, Northernmost both confronts the darkest recesses of the human heart and celebrates the remarkable ability for humans survive nearly unimaginable trials.