The Goodwins, Howard, Alice, and their little girls, Emma and Claire, live on a dairy farm in Wisconsin. Although suspiciously regarded by their neighbors as "that hippie couple" because of their well-educated, urban background, Howard and Alice believe they have found a source of emotional strength in the farm, he tending the barn while Alice works as a nurse in the local elementary school.
But their peaceful life is shattered one day when a neighbor’s two-year-old daughter drowns in the Goodwins’ pond while under Alice’s care. Tormented by the accident, Alice descends even further into darkness when she is accused of sexually abusing of a student at the elementary school. Soon, Alice is arrested, incarcerated, and as good as convicted in the eyes of a suspicious community. As a child, Alice designed her own map of the world to find her bearings. Now, as an adult, she must find her way again, through a maze of lies, doubt and ill will.
A vivid human drama of guilt and betrayal, A Map of the World chronicles the intricate geographies of the human heart and all its mysterious, uncharted terrain. The result is a piercing drama about family bonds and a disappearing rural American life.
- Series: Oprah's Book Club
- Paperback: 400 pages
- Publisher: Anchor (December 3, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0385720106
- ISBN-13: 978-0385720106
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.8 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (422 customer reviews)