The Runaway Wife (Paperback)
Harper Paperbacks, 9780062431752, 256pp.
Publication Date: July 12, 2016
“Where’d You Go, Bernadette? meets Eat, Pray, Love.” —The Skimm
Three beautiful French sisters entrust an American hiker with the mission of rescuing their mother high in the Alps.
But what if she doesn’t want to be found?
Recently fired from his high-power finance job and dumped by his fiancée, Jim Olsen has come to the Swiss Alps to clear his head. At the charming Cabane des Audannes, he meets Clio, Thalia and Helene Castellane, who are on a quest of their own: their mother, Calliope, has fled to these mountains to escape her philandering politician husband’s most recent scandal. As snow threatens to descend upon the Alps, the women have come to bring their mother home.
But the sisters are at the point of surrender; it is time for them to return to Paris. Buoyed by wine and inspired by their beauty, Jim impetuously volunteers to assume their search, but soon realizes that he is in over his head. The Alps are filled with beauty and danger, not the least of which is Calliope’s desire to stay hidden. And all the while Jim finds himself haunted by the memory of her daughters and conflicted in his desire for them.
The Runaway Wife is a story of adventure, survival, and romance—and of a man’s discovery of a world outside his conventional life and a new vision of himself within it.
About the Author
Elizabeth Birkelund is the author of one other French-inspired novel, The Dressmaker. As a freelance magazine journalist, Elizabeth was the personal finance columnist for Cosmopolitan and wrote for more than fifteen years for Working Woman, Self, and Glamour, among other publications. She lives in New York City.
Praise For The Runaway Wife: A Novel…
— The Skimm
“Birkelund writes sensuous, myth-ridden prose, intensely alive to the natural world. She spins a tale here that feels both ancient and very new, and sets it in a landscape at once so dangerous and so beautiful that the story and the mountains seem to be part of each other.”
— Beth Gutcheon, author of Gossip and Still Missing
“Elizabeth Birkelund is a graceful, intelligent writer, full of energy and wit, and I love the way she blends American and European themes.”
— Roxana Robinson, author of Sparta
“In Birkelund’s gorgeous prose, the mountains take on an astonishing glory and ferocity, a fitting background for Jim Olsen’s poignant and compelling journey from sorrow to self-discovery.”
— Lauren Belfer, author of A Fierce Radiance
“Racing from the breathtaking heights of the Swiss Alps to the heady power circles of Paris and New York, The Runaway Wife scales the peaks of human adventure and plumbs the depths of the human heart.”
— Ellen Feldman, author of Terrible Virtue and Next to Love