Because of the exceptional qualities of Katherine McNamara's writing, we are featuring, for the first time, a non-fiction book, her account of her life in Alaska:

NARROW ROAD TO THE DEEP NORTH
Literature & Essay / Travel
6 x 9, 304 pp
Paper, $15.95
1-56279-122-2
US and Canada
AVAILABLE MARCH 2001


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Katherine McNamara is the editor of Archipelago

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Copyright © 2000 Mercury House. All rights reserved. To visit Mercury House Press


Narrow Road:  bookcover


NARROW ROAD TO THE DEEP NORTH A Journey Into the Interior of Alaska

Katherine Mcnamara by Katherine McNamara


Publisher's Note:

An epic account of a woman’s experiences among native people in the interior of Alaska.

“The reader of this book takes up an account of a long journey, a physical and metaphysical journey, into a country of Imagination. That country is Alaska.”

So begins Narrow Road to the Deep North, the extraordinary story of a young woman’s experiences among Athabaskan Indians in the interior of Alaska. A poet recently returned from the literary salons of Paris, the author takes a job teaching in a remote region of Alaska. As she comes to know the region and its peoples—as she learns to see the visible and invisible world around her—she finds herself more and more the student rather than the teacher.

A true story on an epic scale, told with a relentless realism that portrays Alaska and its people without romanticizing them, charged with a unique and informed intelligence,Narrow Road to the Deep North is the moving story of a woman’s path to knowledge in a remote and austere land.

Review and Comment:

“A finely wrought, layered story ... rich with affectionate, precise profiles of native people and white outsiders.... Whether writing about intimate relationships, poetry, or the intricacies of village life, her approach is full of grace and equanimity.”
Publishers Weekly

“[There is] a deep, rolling movement of feeling underneath the story, conveying the communal world, the natural world, the holy world.”
— Fay Myenne Ng, author of Bone


“Katherine McNamara has such a vivid vision of the interior world that the real world falls away into the background. That’s what’s so refreshing about her outlook. And so desperately needed in our almost entirely materialistic society. Light in a cave, air in a closet.”
— Benjamin Cheever


“This is the closest any Wasichu of our time will come to understanding the religion of Native nations, and nobody will ever get closer, because the animism enlivening that culture, which had barely made it into the sixties, is now nearly gone.”
— Larry Woiwode


“Katherine McNamara, the editor and publisher of the marvelous online literary magazine Archipelago, has written an amazing story of her experiences as a poet and teacher in the Alaskan interior during the mid-70s. Narrow Road to the Deep North tells of her time spent among the Athabaskan Indians, who teach her not only to see the visible world around her with new eyes, but introduce her to the invisible as well. This is a fascinating story beautifully told.”
— Jeannette Watson, “Off the Wall”


"In Narrow Road to the Deep North: A Journey Into the Interior of Alaska, Katherine McNamara's journey is that of a poet who goes into the Alaskan wilderness to teach, and instead becomes, for over a decade, a kind of student (and chronicler) of the Athabascan Indians. This is a deeply caring history of these people and their land. McNamara fell in love with an Athabascan, and they lived together for quite a long time (one of the most interesting and heartbreaking parts of her story). The author's goodness of heart, her splendid writing style, and the real and rough sense of what the wild life is like are the high points of this memoir."
— Jenny Feder, Three Lives Books, NYC


Katherine McNamara is the editor and publisher of Archipelago (www.archipelago.org), an on-line literary journal. Her poems and nonfiction have been published in anthologies, journals, and reviews. She lives in Charlottesville, Virginia.

NARROW ROAD TO THE DEEP NORTH
Literature & Essay / Travel
6 x 9, 304 pp
Paper, $15.95
1-56279-122-2 US and Canada
AVAILABLE MARCH 2001

Copyright © 2000 Mercury House. All rights reserved.