Best Flight Behavior: A Novel (P.S.)
Amazon Best Books of the Month, November 2012: In what may be the first novel to realistically imagine the near-term impact of global weirding, Barbara Kingsolver sets her latest story in rural Appalachia . In fictional Feathertown, Tennessee, Dellarobia Turnbow--on the run from her stifling life--charges up the mountain above her husbands family farm and stumbles onto a valley of fire filled with millions of monarch butterflies. This vision is deemed miraculous by the towns parishioners, then the international media. But when Ovid, a scientist who studies monarch behavior, sets up a lab on the Turnbow farm, he learns that the butterflies presence signals systemic disorder--and Dellarobia's in-laws logging plans wont help. Readers who bristle at politics made personal may be turned off by the strength of Kingsolvers convictions, but she never reduces her characters to mouthpieces, giving equal weight to climate science and human need, to forces both biological and biblical. Her concept of family encompasses all living beings, however ephemeral, and Flight Behavior gracefully, urgently contributes to the dialogue of survival on this swiftly tilting planet. --Mari Malcolm
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