Gisèle Villeneuve’s short stories test the elastic pull between passion and terror. For inspiration, Villeneuve turned to her personal history to examine what lures urban dwellers outdoors, to test themselves against peaks and valleys. Using the overarching metaphor of mountain climbing, she plays with form, language, and narrative to reveal our fears, our loves, our passions. Rising Abruptly is a perfect companion for anyone who likes to travel, loves a climber, or simply glories in the allure of the mountains.
"Even the unassuming day trips deliver their moments. The whiteouts. The going off route. Scrambling back down on rock coated with verglas. Neither of us liking it one bit, but resolutely descending. Focusing on the moment that could change everything with one misstep. The four-hour scramble that begins on a sunny summer morning, stretching into the night to a seventeen-hour epic. There are such days, and they can happen an hour’s drive from Calgary on a relatively small mountain.
Back to comfort, talking up a storm. Doing the post-mortem. Watching the tempest, still so real in our minds, relief and excitement printed on our windburned faces. Together, building story, across time and across silences.
Back to comfort then acquires a whole new meaning when you bear the land deep in the bone."
From “Assiniboine Crossroads”