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Flight Behavior

by

Flight Behavior Cover

ISBN13: 9780062124265
ISBN10: 0062124269
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Flight Behavior transfixes from its opening scene, when a young woman's narrow experience of life is thrown wide with the force of a raging fire. In the lyrical language of her native Appalachia, Barbara Kingsolver bares the rich, tarnished humanity of her novel's inhabitants and unearths the modern complexities of rural existence. Characters and reader alike are quickly carried beyond familiar territory here, into the unsettled ground of science, faith, and everyday truces between reason and conviction.

Dellarobia Turnbow is a restless farm wife who gave up her own plans when she accidentally became pregnant at seventeen. Now, after a decade of domestic disharmony on a failing farm, she has settled for permanent disappointment but seeks momentary escape through an obsessive flirtation with a younger man. As she hikes up a mountain road behind her house to a secret tryst, she encounters a shocking sight: a silent, forested valley filled with what looks like a lake of fire. She can only understand it as a cautionary miracle, but it sparks a raft of other explanations from scientists, religious leaders, and the media. The bewildering emergency draws rural farmers into unexpected acquaintance with urbane journalists, opportunists, sightseers, and a striking biologist with his own stake in the outcome. As the community lines up to judge the woman and her miracle, Dellarobia confronts her family, her church, her town, and a larger world, in a flight toward truth that could undo all she has ever believed.

Flight Behavior takes on one of the most contentious subjects of our time: climate change. With a deft and versatile empathy Kingsolver dissects the motives that drive denial and belief in a precarious world.

Review:

"With her powerful new novel, Kingsolver (The Lacuna) delivers literary fiction that conveys an urgent social message. Set in a rural Tennessee that has endured unseasonal rain, the plot explores the effects of a bizarre biological event on a Bible Belt community. The sight that young wife and mother Dellarobia Turnbow comes upon — millions of monarch butterflies glowing like a 'lake of fire' in a sheep pasture owned by her in-laws — is immediately branded a miracle, and promises a lucrative tourist season for the financially beleaguered Turnbows. But the arrival of a research team led by sexy scientist Ovid Byron reveals the troubling truth behind the butterflies' presence: they've been driven by pollution from their usual Mexican winter grounds and now face extinction due to northern hemisphere temperatures. Equally threatening is the fact that her father-in-law, Bear, has sold the land to loggers. Already restless in her marriage to the passive Cub, for whom she gave up college when she became pregnant at 17, unsophisticated, cigarette-addicted Dellarobia takes a mammoth leap when she starts working with the research team. As her horizons expand, she faces a choice between the status quo and, perhaps, personal fulfillment. Spunky Dellarobia is immensely appealing; the caustic view she holds of her husband, in-laws, and neighbors, the self-deprecating repartee she has with her best friend Dovey, and her views about the tedium of motherhood combined with a loving but clear-eyed appraisal of her own children invest the narrative with authenticity and sparkling humor. Kingsolver also animates and never judges the uneducated, superstitious, religiously devout residents of Feathertown. As Dellarobia flees into a belated coming-of-age, which becomes the ironic outcome of the Monarchs' flight path to possible catastrophe in the collapse of a continental ecosystem, the dramatic saga becomes a clarion call about climate change, too lucid and vivid for even skeptics to ignore. 8-city author tour. One-day laydown. Agent: Frances Goldin, Goldin Literary Agency" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Review:

"Drawing on both her Appalachian roots and her background in biology, Kingsolver delivers a passionate novel on the effects of global warming." Booklist, Starred Review

Review:

"Enthralling...Dellarobia is appealingly complex as a smart, curious, warmhearted woman desperate to — no resisting the metaphor here — trade her cocoon for wings." Oprah.com

Review:

"A dazzling page-turner." Elle

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About the Author

Barbara Kingsolver is the author of seven works of fiction, including the novels The Poisonwood Bible, Animal Dreams, and The Bean Trees, as well as books of poetry, essays, and creative nonfiction such as Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. In 2000, she was awarded the National Humanities Medal, our country's highest honor for service through the arts. She lives with her family on a farm in southern Appalachia.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 32 comments:

writermala, April 13, 2013 (view all comments by writermala)
How a nature book essentially about climate change can be so interesting is a mystery to me. It was Kingsolver's way with words and her humor shining through in her characters that did it. Dellarobia lives in the Appalachian South and Kingsolver tells a fictitious tale of Monarch Butterflies literally moving to her backyard. The book being based on fact, is essentially informative but woven as it is in a perfect tale of human behavior it remains very interesting. I couldn't put it down.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
Joanne Haley, February 20, 2013 (view all comments by Joanne Haley)
Interesting subject matter for Barbara Kingsolver's latest book. It takes some actual facts and adds fiction to create an interesting story. It sugguests global warming to be the cause of the changes in Monarch Butterfly migrations. Her characters are great as always & make you feel like you know them. The decision a family has to make between preserving their land or selling out & cutting down their forest is very relevant & makes the reader be able to easily identify with this family. All in all I liked the story, but was not one of my favorite Kingsolver books.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
Roxanne Basey, January 31, 2013 (view all comments by Roxanne Basey)
So much more than the typical novel today.

Very important issues, with a strangely calm, but dystopic bent.

Wonderfully down to earth characters. Loved the ideas and sense of place.

The decisions made by the protagonist are original, based on contemporary issues but without the techno-babble.

Almost too much to absorb. Kingsolver takes the reader into the unknown. If only we would listen.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
View all 32 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780062124265
Author:
Kingsolver, Barbara
Publisher:
Harper
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Literature-Contemporary Women
Edition Description:
Hardcover
Publication Date:
20121131
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Pages:
448
Dimensions:
9 x 6 x 1.13106 in 22.8 oz

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Flight Behavior Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$12.50 In Stock
Product details 448 pages Harper - English 9780062124265 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "With her powerful new novel, Kingsolver (The Lacuna) delivers literary fiction that conveys an urgent social message. Set in a rural Tennessee that has endured unseasonal rain, the plot explores the effects of a bizarre biological event on a Bible Belt community. The sight that young wife and mother Dellarobia Turnbow comes upon — millions of monarch butterflies glowing like a 'lake of fire' in a sheep pasture owned by her in-laws — is immediately branded a miracle, and promises a lucrative tourist season for the financially beleaguered Turnbows. But the arrival of a research team led by sexy scientist Ovid Byron reveals the troubling truth behind the butterflies' presence: they've been driven by pollution from their usual Mexican winter grounds and now face extinction due to northern hemisphere temperatures. Equally threatening is the fact that her father-in-law, Bear, has sold the land to loggers. Already restless in her marriage to the passive Cub, for whom she gave up college when she became pregnant at 17, unsophisticated, cigarette-addicted Dellarobia takes a mammoth leap when she starts working with the research team. As her horizons expand, she faces a choice between the status quo and, perhaps, personal fulfillment. Spunky Dellarobia is immensely appealing; the caustic view she holds of her husband, in-laws, and neighbors, the self-deprecating repartee she has with her best friend Dovey, and her views about the tedium of motherhood combined with a loving but clear-eyed appraisal of her own children invest the narrative with authenticity and sparkling humor. Kingsolver also animates and never judges the uneducated, superstitious, religiously devout residents of Feathertown. As Dellarobia flees into a belated coming-of-age, which becomes the ironic outcome of the Monarchs' flight path to possible catastrophe in the collapse of a continental ecosystem, the dramatic saga becomes a clarion call about climate change, too lucid and vivid for even skeptics to ignore. 8-city author tour. One-day laydown. Agent: Frances Goldin, Goldin Literary Agency" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Review" by , "Drawing on both her Appalachian roots and her background in biology, Kingsolver delivers a passionate novel on the effects of global warming."
"Review" by , "Enthralling...Dellarobia is appealingly complex as a smart, curious, warmhearted woman desperate to — no resisting the metaphor here — trade her cocoon for wings."
"Review" by , "A dazzling page-turner."
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