Author(s): Sophie Cunningham
Catherine is a travel agent. The world is at her disposal. Her family is scattered around the globe. She's never settled. She never falls in love with anyone in the place in which she lives, a quirk that seems romantic to her and her friends. Then she meets and falls in love with Michael, who lives in Los Angeles, and builds what she calls a relationship and others call an obsession. Catherine's world is soon defined by postcards, e-mail, books, movies, all of which have meaning only because of their connection to Michael. And then there are the media events which seem to affect, or follow, her affair: the Rodney King trials, Waco, the LA earthquake of 1994, the Sydney bushfires of 1994, the New York blizzard of 1996, Princess Diana's death. Increasingly Catherine can't tell the difference between what is happening to her and what is happening around her. She lives her life like a romantic heroine. She throws her money, her energy, a lot of words and even years of her life, on a man she doesn't know. Her obsession becomes more and more debilitating as her life becomes increasingly virtual. Geography is about distance and desire. It's about the illusion of choice. And about how long it can take to figure out what the words love, and home, actually mean.
Shortlisted for Commonwealth Writers' Prize Best First Book - SE Asia and South Pacific 2004.
Sophie Cunningham is a former publisher and the author of two novels, Geography published in 2004, and Bird published in 2008. She is a former editor of Meanjin, and the the current Chair of the Literature Strategy Panel of the Australia Council. She was a founding member of the Stella Prize.