Four Quarters of Light
An Alaskan Journey
By (author) Brian Keenan
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Four Quarters of Light by Brian Keenan
Book DescriptionBrian Keenan's fascination with Alaska began as a small boy, while reading Jack London's wondrous, "Call of the Wild". With a head full of questions about its inspiring landscape and a heart informed by his love of desolate and barren places, Brian Keenan sets out for Alaska to discover its four geographical quarters, from snowmelt in May to snowfall in September, and en route, finds a land as fantastical as a fairytale, but whose vastness has a very peculiar type of allure...From dog-mushing on a frozen lake beneath the whirling colours of the aurora borealis, to camping in a two dollar tent in the tundra of the arctic circle, Brian Keenan seeks out the ultimate wilderness experience and along the way, encounters hard-core survivalists who know what struggle and endurance mean, from their daily battle with nature to exist. He discovers that true wilderness is as much a state of mind, as it is a place. And ultimately to make Alaska home, one must surrender to the land.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780552999731
(199mm x 127mm x 25mm)
Imprint: Black Swan
Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
Publish Date: 1-Oct-2005
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Brian Keenan
Keeping Canaries, Paperback (September 2012)
Canaries have been domesticated since the fifteenth century, when the Spanish first imported them from their Canary Isles home, attracted by their melodic song. Since then their popularity as a caged bird has spread throughout the world. This book introduces several of the different types of canary that are popular.
I'll Tell Me Ma, Paperback (June 2010)
Telling his story as an ordinary boy growing up in Belfast after the war, the author captures the vanished world of 1950s Belfast.
Between Extremes, Paperback (September 2000)
During their four year incarceration in a Lebanese cell the authors envisaged walking in the High Andes and across Patagonia. Five years after their release Keenan and McCarthy travelled to Chile to fulfil this dream. The story of their journey revisited the past experiences whilst allowing them to live by their own rules.
Evil Cradling, Paperback (April 1993)» View all books by Brian Keenan
Brian Keenan's release from captivity was the first ray of hope for those hostages held in the Middle East. He describes the plight of his fellow hostages with first-hand knowledge. The language he uses reflects his past efforts as a poet in describing the pain and claustrophobia of imprisonment.
US Kirkus Review » Where does an Irishman go after reading The Call of the Wild? To the Arctic Circle, of course.In 2003, Keenan (An Evil Cradling, 1993) traveled to Alaska armed with a Jack London epigraph ("There is an ecstasy that marks the summit of life, and beyond which life cannot rise") and a head full of dreams. He planned to make a five-month journey with his wife and two sons; in Fairbanks, the family picked up an RV, which the author grandly named the Pequod, while his young son prosaically dubbed it "the car-house." Keenan learned to manage a dog team-"Every time I took a spill my team barked and yelped as if they were a team of hyenas and my comic performance was to their liking"-and during a practice sleigh run was beguiled by the colors of an aurora borealis. But when the Pequod headed south toward the far reaches of Denali National Park, the land and its inhabitants got stranger. White proprietors refused to sell gas to the Keenans, and evangelical injunctions were plastered everywhere. After reaching Valdez, the author was warned about various religious and right-wing cults populating the area. Returning to Fairbanks, Keenan subsequently traveled the Alaskan Highway with a long-distance trucker and flew to attend a traditional Gwich'in gathering in Arctic Village, where he inadvertently set up camp in a graveyard. He eventually decided to abandon his pursuit of London's Yukon footsteps, and the family lingered in Sitka, where "the summer was ending with glorious haste, and under the green canopy of the evergreen forest autumn colors were setting the hillsides ablaze."Keenan's self-deprecating humor and eagerness to learn set this apart from many travelogues. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Brian Keenan
Brian Keenan is a writer and poet. An Evil Cradling, the story of his four years' captivity in Beirut, is recognized as a non-fiction classic. He is also the author of a travel book, Between Extremes, with John McCarthy, and a novel, Turlough.
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