The Atomic Weight of Love

Available

Product Details

Price
$15.95  $14.67
Publisher
Algonquin Books
Publish Date
March 07, 2017
Pages
368
Dimensions
5.4 X 8.1 X 0.9 inches | 0.65 pounds
Language
English
Type
Paperback
EAN/UPC
9781616206901

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About the Author

Elizabeth J. Church was born in Los Alamos, New Mexico. Her father, a research chemist, was drafted out of Carnegie Mellon University, where he was pursuing his graduate studies, and was sent to join other scientists working in secret on the Manhattan Project. Church's mother, a biologist, eventually joined her husband in Los Alamos. While The Atomic Weight of Love is not their story, it is the story of many of the women who sacrificed their careers so that their husbands could pursue unique opportunities in scientific research. Along with other Los Alamos children, Church grew up in an environment that gave her ready access both to nature and to female teachers who had advanced degrees in mathematics, chemistry, physics, biology, and other disciplines. Church practiced law for over thirty years, focusing on mental health and constitutional law issues. After circumstances taught her the brevity of life, she walked away from the law to pursue her original dream of writing. She has written extensively for legal publications and scientific journals. Her short story "Skin Deep" won first prize in Literal LattΓ©'s 2001 fiction contest, and "Lying with Dogs" was published in Natural Bridge in 2002. This is her first novel.

Reviews

"A tightly crafted novel." --The New York Times Book Review

"Church's absorbing debut novel shows the loneliness and pain that exists for the woman behind the famous man . . . We see it all through the prism of Meridian Wallace Whetstone, a woman ahead of her time." --Bookreporter.com

"Inspiring, empowering, and heartbreaking in turn." --The Roanoke Times

"Church's debut will likely strike a chord, especially with women who find that not much has changed in our patriarchal society since Meri's time, and that Meri's story might well be their own." --Booklist

"Church's debut novel explores the relationship between sacrifice and love . . . Each sentence drives the plot further, exploring love's limits and its spoils. But it's Church's exploration of Meridian's role in her relationships that is the most gracefully executed feat of the novel. Meridian's voice is poignant, a mixture of poetry and observation . . . An elegant glimpse into the evolution of love and womanhood." --Kirkus Reviews

"Church hits the mark in this emotionally driven debut that spans the chapters of a long life . . . What does love require of us? How does one strike a balance between compromise and self-fulfillment? In her debut novel, Church writes to these issues in a style that is thoughtful and elegant." --Library Journal

"Oh, what an incandescent debut! Church follows one extraordinary woman, who is brave to enough to challenge the times, take defiant wing, and chart her own extraordinary flight path. So engrossing, I couldn't wait to read another page, and so alive, I never wanted the story to end." --Caroline Leavitt, author of Is This Tomorrow and Pictures of You

"This exquisite debut is the beautifully written story of a woman who must negotiate the tricky terrain of love, responsibility, ambition and sacrifice. In her impeccable portrayal of a long marriage, Elizabeth Church weaves together the historical and the personal and shows the impossible choices women faced--and still face--between family and self." --Tara Conklin, author of The House Girl