"Kingsolver is a gifted magician of words."
The extraordinary New York Times bestselling author of The Lacuna (winner of the Orange Prize), The Poisonwood Bible (nominated for the Pulitzer Prize), and Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, Barbara Kingsolver returns with a truly stunning and unforgettable work. Flight Behavior is a brilliant and suspenseful novel set in present day Appalachia; a breathtaking parable of catastrophe and denial that explores how the complexities we inevitably encounter in life lead us to believe in our particular chosen truths. Kingsolver's riveting story concerns a young wife and mother on a failing farm in rural Tennessee who experiences something she cannot explain, and how her discovery energizes various competing factions—religious leaders, climate scientists, environmentalists, politicians—trapping her in the center of the conflict and ultimately opening up her world. Flight Behavior is arguably Kingsolver's must thrilling and accessible novel to date, and like so many other of her acclaimed works, represents contemporary American fiction at its finest.
Dellarobia Turnbow is an Appalachian farm wife trapped in a loveless marriage. Her life changes when, inexplicably, thousands of orange monarch butterflies descend on the family's woodland. Some townspeople see it as a sign from God; others take advantage of the phenomenon to make money when it becomes a tourist attraction. But the arrival of a butterfly scientist opens Dellarobia's eyes to the frightening implications of climate change and, at the same time, gives her the courage to escape the confines of her own life. Kingsolver proves an excellent reader of her own work, perfectly conveying both Dellarobia's gossipy, accented smalltown neighbors and the distinctive Jamaican accent of intellectual Ovid, the butterfly scientist. Perhaps most impressive is her narration of Ovid's explanations of the phenomenon: descriptions of monarch butterfly migration patterns and the impact of climate change could have been dry, but Kingsolver's voice is full of the character's passion, which keeps listeners engaged. The author also ably conveys Dellarobia's yearnings and her struggle to deal with the conflict between her home life and her dreams. This is a beautifully realized audio version of a compelling and fascinating novel. A Harper hardcover.
I picked up this book thinking it would be about a housewife wanting to get away from her disappointing life. It turned out this this novel encompassed so much more. I found the story beyond the main character's family life compelling. I do have to say, at times, when the story revolved around climate change, it felt heavy handed. I know about climate change and do not doubt it is happening, but the book began to feel preachy. It was annoying, but it did not stop me from reading the book. By the end, I was sad that it ended because I did enjoy the novel overall.
Barbara Kingsolver starts off strong in this book. She constructs an interesting story with good people. The novel is up todate and full of modern references. The story lines are easy to follow, maybe a little too simple. There is no strong ending as with the problems presented in the book have no answers, and there the reader is left hanging. When I read a book of fiction I want an ending! A novel is a make believe story, make an ending, for Pete's sake!
An uncomfortable truth is the background for this work of fiction. We don't know how the story ends, but we have an idea. Thought provoking; almost couldn't put it down.