The university of alberta press
robert kroetsch series

Rising Abruptly

Seven compelling stories about women, and the mystery and the allure of mountains.
Based on my mountaineering experience, these stories challenge our urban selves against the great outdoor. I play with form, language and narrative to test fear and love, passion and obsession.
"Back to comfort then acquires a whole new meaning when you bear the land deep in the bone."
From "Assiniboine Crossroads"

Awards and Nominations

Winner, Banff Mountain Book Competition - Mountain Fiction & Poetry 2017, International
Winner, Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction 2017, Canada
Winner, Alberta Book Publishing Awards - Trade Fiction 2017, Canada
Short-listed, Howard O'Hagan Award for Short Story 2017, Canada
Long-listed, Alberta Readers' Choice Award 2017, Canada 

Reviews for Rising Abruptly

This work is “exquisitely crafted, important, and innovative.”
George Bugnet Award, jury's comment. 

“The winning publisher delivered an interesting compendium of short stories, a strong collection unified by theme, and featuring very powerful writing – spectacular, in the words of one juror.”
Alberta Book Publishing Awards, jury's comment.                                                                                                                                                        

"The narrator of 'Assiniboine Crossroads', one of the seven stories collected here, observes: "Even the unassuming day trips deliver their moments."  The stories, too are unassuming, quiet even. The worlds they portray are at once familiar and fresh: we know them but have never quite viewed them through Villeneuve's lens. And, "the moments"? The author delivers them: glinting shards of glass scattered throughout her fields."
David Stevenson, Banff Mountain Book Competition, Mountain Fiction & Poetry                                                                                                                   

“The seven quirky stories in Gisèle Villeneuve’s new collection, Rising Abruptly, all have mountains at their heart… The characters’ relationship with mountains evolves throughout the stories, creating an arc that models a romantic relationship: infatuation, the conflict between independence and commitment, and the acceptance of love coupled with death. Rising Abruptly is a literary ode to climbers and the mountains that captivate them, and presents a fascinating portrait of passion of the high peaks.”
Karen Ackland, Foreword Reviews                                                                                                                                                       

“Sept nouvelles impressionnantes, écrites dans une langue irréprochable, qui donnent – ou ne donnent pas – envie d’affronter les toits du monde.”
Hélène Rioux, Lettres québécoises

“Mountain climbing is a metaphor in the stories found in her new collection, Rising Abruptly, which use form, language, and narrative to deal with raw emotions like fear, love, and passion… Villeneuve’s stories covey to readers a sense of the dual nature of the mountains, which are at once hard, difficult, and intimidating, but also fragile. In fact, it is precisely the juxtaposition of two opposites that offen fuels Villeneuve’s writing.”
Paula F. Kirman, Prairie Books Now

“These stories can be emotionally wrought, as off-kilter as their mountains, yet Villeneuve invites us into this thorny, exposed terrain with confidence. As a climber I found it gratifying to see women’s desires so strongly expressed. Rising Abruptly is a complex, satisfying collection that bears reading again.”
Elaine Morin, Alberta Views. To read more.