Four years after Therese Greenwood and her husband moved to Fort McMurray, Alberta, their new community was shattered by one of the worst wildfires in Canadian history. As the flames approached, they had only minutes to pack, narrowly escaping a fire that would rage for weeks, burn more than 85,000 hectares and force 80,000 people to flee.
# 1 on Edmonton Non-Fiction Bestsellers list, April 3, 2019
"One of the greatest treasures in life may be to understand both where we have come from and who we have come to be. It seems that Therese’s reflections gave her some of those insights. Perhaps reading and reflecting with her might do the same for us."
"Greenwood's book, What You Take With You, is an amalgamation of life lessons on the resilience needed to recover emotionally and mentally following the May 2016 [wildfire] disaster.... The book analyzes what Greenwood took from her home as authorities began ordering the evacuation of Fort McMurray. She had only 15 minutes to grab what she needed.... Greenwood said each object she took in the frenzy of evacuation had a subconscious and special meaning for her.... Each chapter of her book explains the life lesson tied to these objects and how Greenwood applied those lessons to the aftermath of the fire."
"...as evacuation orders were imposed and as the highway out of town swelled with traffic... [Greenwood] gathered an assortment of objects, from deeply meaningful mementos to items that initially appeared more random... Each of the objects she has retained is carefully considered and contextualized over a number of chapters that fuse past and present, family memories and local histories.... In this surprisingly gripping and deeply moving account, Greenwood considers how we re-establish normalcy in the wake of profound loss."