The Foothill Authors Series presents Kim Silveria Wolterbeek, author of A Place of Light March 4 from 11 a.m. to noon in the Hearthside Lounge (Room 2313). Admission is free. Staff and faculty earn PGA/PAA credit for attending. Authors Series books are available at the Foothill College Bookstore, and can be purchased at a 20-percent discount. The reading is co-sponsored by the Foothill College Women’s Heritage Month and Foothill College Honors Institute.
A Place of Light Synopsis— "Help the Women." Caught in a storm and weakened by fasting, Robert of Arbrissel hears these simple words and begins preaching in brothels. But it is not his words or his seductive voice as much as his glowing halo that encourages Madeleine, an emotionally damaged prostitute who sees the world through a distracted lens of color and sound, to join him. Robert gathers followers and the reputation of sainthood, but he knows that his thoughts about Madeleine are not worthy of a holy man. Girard, a monk obsessed with food, finds following Robert only mires him more deeply in his own bottomless needs. Lady Philippa, Duchess of Aquitaine and Countess of Toulouse, first helps Robert's cause with a gift of land to build his vision of an abbey but later seeks refuge there herself. Set in early 12th century France, and based on historical events, A Place of Light reverberates with violence and beauty, with the parallel realities of prostitution and aristocratic marriage, the harsh aftermath of recent Viking invasions, and the intimate instruction of storytelling. Within that tumultuous world, four flawed souls, with their eccentricities and their passions, their painful vulnerabilities and their good intentions, their conflicted impulses and desires, help to build the Abbey of Fontevraud while searching for their own place of light.
About the Author— Kim Silveira Wolterbeek has been teaching literature and writing at Foothill College since 1988. She is a three-time recipient of the National Institute for Staff & Organizational Development Excellence Award. Her fiction has appeared in numerous periodicals, been anthologized in A Line of Cutting Women and read on National Public Radio's "The Sound of Writing." She has twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She is also the author of The Glass Museum, a collection of short stories published by Bellowing Ark Press.