By Mary Albanese
Epicenter Press, $14.95, 208 pages
Mary Albanese chronicles her journey to Alaska and the adventure of a lifetime when she forgoes her education as a teacher to study and become an arctic geologic explorer. This is a great story by an entertaining storyteller about the history of America’s final frontier, Alaska, after the pipeline was built but when the state was still being mapped out. Midnight Sun, Arctic Moon is a memoir full of rich characters and human emotions, as well as the adventure and danger of the wild. This title will appeal not just to Alaska armchair explorers, but also readers of women’s history, wilderness adventure, and stories of women making their place in historically male-dominated professional worlds. It is an entertaining and heartfelt read, from how Albanese finds herself in the geology program at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks, to Alaskan-style romance and living situations, to the toll the wilderness and long dark winters can take on the people who live there, and finally the author’s own personal tragedy. Highly recommended!
Reviewed by Catherine McMullen