Friday, August 26, 2011

Friday Freebie: Safe From the Sea by Peter Geye

Congratulations to Martha Burzynski, winner of last week's Friday Freebie, Leaving the Atocha Station by Ben Lerner.

This week's book giveaway is Safe from the Sea by Peter Geye.  Released by Unbridled Books last year, Geye's novel will make its paperback debut in early September.  The publisher has generously offered to give one lucky reader of The Quivering Pen a hardbound edition of Safe From the Sea, a family saga which Bookslut called "a thing of beauty; a lesson in the ineffable power of story to take us out of ourselves and bring us to a place we never knew but recognize all the same."  Here's the publisher's blurb:
Set against the powerful lakeshore landscape of northern Minnesota, Safe from the Sea is a heartfelt novel in which a son returns home to reconnect with his estranged and dying father thirty-five years after the tragic wreck of a Great Lakes ore boat that the father only partially survived and that has divided them emotionally ever since. When his father for the first time finally tells the story of the horrific disaster he has carried with him so long, it leads the two men to reconsider each other. Meanwhile, Noah’s own struggle to make a life with an absent father has found its real reward in his relationship with his sagacious wife, Natalie, whose complications with infertility issues have marked her husband’s life in ways he only fully realizes as the reconciliation with his father takes shape.
Though I haven't had the chance to read Safe From the Sea, it's been on my ever-expanding, ever-evolving To-Be-Read pile since last year.  When a book gets as much universal good buzz as this one did, I sit up and take notice.  The opening lines of the first chapter are certainly promising and give some indication of how Geye makes the Great Lakes landscape not just a scenic backdrop, but a principal player in the story:
That morning Noah boarded a plane for Duluth. By seven o'clock he was driving a rental car down Mesaba Avenue. Between the intermittent swoosh of the windshield wipers he recognized the city he harbored in his memory. It lay below him smothered in fog, the downtown lights wheezing in mist. Though he could not see the lake in the distance, he knew it rested beyond the pall. Soon he pulled onto Superior Street. The manholes blowing steam might have been freeing ghosts.

If you'd like a chance at winning a copy of Safe From the Sea, all you have to do is answer this question:

According to his website, what are the three "b" jobs Peter Geye has held at one time or another in his life?

Email your answer to

Put FRIDAY FREEBIE in the e-mail subject line.  One entry per person, please.  Please e-mail me the answer, rather than posting it in the comments section.  Despite its name, the Friday Freebie runs all week long and remains open to entries until midnight on Sept. 1--at which time I'll draw the winning name.  I'll announce the lucky reader on Sept. 2.

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