When the young Terry Tempest Williams stayed at her grandmother's house, she slept under two thirds of a tacked-up reproduction of a famous triptych by Hieronymus Bosch. She was well acquainted with the 15th-century Flemish painter's Paradise and Hell, though the center panel, not acceptable viewing for the devout Mormon child, eluded her gaze until her adult life. Williams eventually viewed the Garden of Earthly Delights in its entirety in the Prado; Leap is the prose that sprang from her epiphany. The book's analytical treatment of Bosch's painting encompasses much more than brushstrokes and theology; Williams (Refuge) combines themes of faith, environmentalism, passion, and art in this profoundly respectful, highly inspiring account. Readers, beware: her reverence is contagious. Malia, Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
"An extraordinary blend of allegory, spiritual quest, and meditation on creativity (human, natural, and divine)....This complex book muses over art, spirituality, the religion of one's birth, environmentalism, and the nature of paradise without many nods to narrative thread or the conventional workings of the conscious self." Sheryl Fowler, School Library Journal
"Earth is art, Williams realizes, and at the very least, it deserves the same respect and protection accorded Bosch's triptych. 'The world is holy. We are holy. All life is holy,' she writes, and no one who follows her on this remarkable journey will ever take art, nature, or faith for granted again." Donna Seaman, Booklist
In her first book-length work since "Refuge, " Williams explores the landscape of Hieronymus Bosch's enigmatic 15th century Flemish masterpiece, "The Garden of Delights." The result is an original account of one woman's spiritual search for the intertwined roots of faith, creativity, and wisdom.
About the Author
Terry Tempest Williams is the author of Refuge, An Unspoken Hunger (both available in paperback from Vintage Books), and Desert Quartet. The recipient of a Lannan Literary Fellowship and a Guggenheim Fellowship, she lives with her husband, Brooke Williams, in Grand County, Utah.