“A gloriously researched, pluckily written historical and anecdotal assay of humankind’s age-old quixotic quest for the exact location of the Biblical garden.” Elle
“Absorbing . . . in writing Paradise Lust, Ms. Wilensky-Lanford faced the unenviable task of translating intellectual history into popular history. . . . But her interest in her subject is deep, her narrative is expertly layered, and her interpretations of the seekers’ motives are more than convincing.” The Wall Street Journal
Where was the Garden of Eden? St. Augustine
had a theory, and so did medieval monks, John Calvin, and Christopher Columbus. But when Darwin
’s theory of evolution permanently altered our understanding of human origins, shouldn’t the search for a literal Eden
have faded away? Not so fast.
In Paradise Lust,
widely acclaimed on its initial hardcover publication, Brook Wilensky-Lanford introduces readers to the enduring modern quest to locate the Garden of Eden on Earth. It is an obsession that has consumed scientists and theologians alike, including the first president of Boston University
and a knighted British engineer. Today the search has been taken up by amateurs. These quixotic seekers all started with the same simple-sounding Bible verses, but ended up at a different spot on the globe: Florida, the North Pole, Ohio, China, and, of course, Iraq.
Inspired by an Eden
seeker in her own family, Wilensky-Lanford writes of these unusual men and women with sympathy and wit. Paradise Lust
is a century-spanning history that provokes surprising insights into where we came from, what we did wrong, and where we go from here.