Flight Behavior: A Novel

Front Cover
Harper Collins, Nov 6, 2012 - Fiction - 464 pages
109 Reviews

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.


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good start, mediocre middle, good ending. - LibraryThing
I felt the ending disappointing however. - LibraryThing
BK is a fabulous writer of character and place. - LibraryThing
My other complaint is with the ending. - LibraryThing
I love Barbara Kingsolver's writing and her activism. - LibraryThing
From what I did read the writing is beautiful. - LibraryThing

Review: Flight Behavior

User Review  - Steve Lindahl - Goodreads

Barbara Kingsolver has included a number of plot threads in her novel Flight Behavior, about subjects she cares about, including the primary one - climate change. Flight Behavior is more than either a ... Read full review

Not my favorite Kingsolver

User Review  - cookiemoves13 - Overstock.com

I love her early books esp. The Poisonwood Bible. This book was good but not great. Read full review

All 102 reviews »


5National Proportions
6Span of aContinent
8Circumference ofthe Earth
10Natural State
Community Dynamics 12 Kinship Systems
14Perfect Female
Authors Note
Praise for Flight Behavior

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About the author (2012)

Barbara Kingsolver's work has been translated into more than twenty languages and has earned a devoted readership at home and abroad. She was awarded the National Humanities Medal, our country's highest honor for service through the arts. She received the 2011 Dayton Literary Peace Prize for the body of her work, and in 2010 won Britain's Orange Prize for The Lacuna. Before she made her living as a writer, Kingsolver earned degrees in biology and worked as a scientist. She now lives with her family on a farm in southern Appalachia.

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