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Midnight Sun, Arctic Moon

Mapping the Wild Heart of Alaska

Mary Albanese


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A young upstate New York woman begins an adventure of a life-time as she moves away from her safe and conventional path. She is unable to resist the excitement and challenge of a chance to become a geological explorer in Alaska, where she maps remote wilderness areas and journeys to the depths of her own heart. A memoir that is full of rich and eccentric characters with human failings. This landscape reveals the courage and sacrifice of the author's "family" of visionary explorers who mapped the wild state. Surviving dangers most people will never face, the author persists in the face of hardships and loss. Framed against the backdrop of Alaska's raw beauty, it is an inspiring story of achievement and hope, told with gentle humor, compassionate grace, and above all, an abiding respect for America's last frontier.

Praise For Midnight Sun, Arctic Moon: Mapping the Wild Heart of Alaska

Given her motto, “If at first you don’t succeed, try something that’s harder,” it is not surprising that Albanese’s journey from a farm in upstate New York to a new life in Alaska—spurred by a gut feeling and news of a teacher shortage there—was filled with great successes, disappointing failures, and heartrending losses. Spiked with wry humor, Albanese’s candid narrative is most effective when she pivots between accounts of surmounting handicaps (e.g., unfamiliarity with the extreme climate; being a woman in a male-dominated field) to horrifying tales of colleagues disappearing in the wilds, being mauled by bears, and falling off mountains. She ends on a bittersweet note, reflecting on her reasons for leaving Alaska, a place that once held seemingly endless opportunities for her. --Publishers Weekly 02/27/12

"What makes this memoir fascinating is that it is an amusing, no-holds-barred, coming-of-age story of a kind seldom written by women." --from the Foreword, by Lael Morgan

"An engaging memoir of an adventurous life in Alaska tough, humorous, and inspiring." --Meg Gardiner, author of The Nightmare Thief

"Stunning, beautiful, funny, sad -- a memoir that will have you taking the chance to find your niche in the world!"

--Amy Lignor, GoodReads

Epicenter Press (WA), 9781935347170, 216pp.

Publication Date: April 1, 2012

About the Author

Mary Albanese is an author, artist, and scriptwriter. She currently resides in England. More information: