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Flight Behavior | [Barbara Kingsolver]

Flight Behavior

Dellarobia Turnbow is a restless farm wife who gave up her own plans when she accidentally became pregnant at 17. Now, after a decade of domestic disharmony on a failing farm, 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.
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Publisher's Summary

Dellarobia Turnbow is a restless farm wife who gave up her own plans when she accidentally became pregnant at 17. Now, after a decade of domestic disharmony on a failing farm, 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. 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.

©2012 Barbara Kingsolver (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (1580 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Beth Hertford, NC, United States 12-09-12
    Beth Hertford, NC, United States 12-09-12 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "as always, barbara does it again"

    very well done! right from the start-a very relateable story that brings important topics to the forefront and maybe get us all thinking about it...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deborah South San Francisco, CA, United States 12-07-12
    Deborah South San Francisco, CA, United States 12-07-12 Member Since 2010
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    "Entertaining and educational and beautifully narra"
    Would you try another book from Barbara Kingsolver and/or Barbara Kingsolver?

    I read everything by Barbara Kingsolver and will keep doing so.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Flight Behavior?

    I enjoyed learning about the way butterflies are studied in the field. But also, among the most enduring images was of the butterflies en masse in flight, streaming around obstacles like flowing water.


    What does Barbara Kingsolver bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Barbara Kingsolver has the sweetest voice, the pleasantest of southern accents. I don't know if this is her normal accent but it was perfect for the story. It captured not only the cadences that are likely appropriate to the folks of Appalachia, but all the frustration, ambivalence, and finally gentleness and hope of the main character. She also did Ovid Byron's Caribbean accent pretty convincingly.


    What character would you cut from Flight Behavior?

    I can't think of any that didn't fit into and contribute to the story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ilene Seattle, WA, United States 12-05-12
    Ilene Seattle, WA, United States 12-05-12 Member Since 2010
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    "Kingsolver hits another home run!"
    What did you love best about Flight Behavior?

    great writing, wonderful story


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Flight Behavior?

    I love the way that Kingsolver threaded concepts of science and public policy into a compelling story


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy Rancho Mirage, CA, United States 12-05-12
    Kathy Rancho Mirage, CA, United States 12-05-12 Member Since 2007
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    "Classic Kingsolver"
    What made the experience of listening to Flight Behavior the most enjoyable?

    I enjoy Kingsolver's voice and reading of the material


    What other book might you compare Flight Behavior to and why?

    Prodigal Summer is probably most like this book.


    What does Barbara Kingsolver bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Her wonderful voice.. and of course, being the author, an intimate understanding of the material.


    If you could rename Flight Behavior, what would you call it?

    I wouldn't


    Any additional comments?

    If you like Kingsolver, then you'll enjoy this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Merrilee Big Rapids, MI, USA 12-05-12
    Merrilee Big Rapids, MI, USA 12-05-12 Member Since 2005
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    "Compelling!"
    If you could sum up Flight Behavior in three words, what would they be?

    Believable, down to earth, and real.


    Any additional comments?

    Barbara Kingsolver is an exellent narrator. I love to hear her read her own work. The story is so real and believable. You feel like you could know these characters, and live in rural Tennessee with Dellarobia and her family. I love that she took a real issue facing our population and made it in to a wonderful story, with delicious facts, and bits of reality woven in to her fictional plot.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gail jackson, NJ, United States 12-04-12
    Gail jackson, NJ, United States 12-04-12 Member Since 2011
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    ""Everything you never wanted to know ...."

    ....about Monarch Butterflies, ad nauseam, and then some. Purchasing this book makes me feel a bit taken advantage of. What I signed on for was the story of a disenchanted farmer's wife, as beautifully described in the Publisher's Summary. As it turned out, that publisher's summary was the most engaging paragraph in the entire book, and it wasn't even in the book. What I got, was an endless dissertation on the plight, life and times of the Monarch Butterfly, as a result of climate change ... in full scientific textbook style enggement. Talk about false advertising. I still cannot fathom the almost 5 star review. There needs to be some kind of accuracy rating on these publisher's summaries. . Perhaps, if the publisher wrote this book, it would have been what was promised. . Attempts at a loose story line to buffer what was otherwise a science book, failed. Characters so poorly developed, you just kept waiting for the point of it all. Re-classify this book as a scientific textbook.

    The narration was excellent.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dale Perkins Encinitas, CA 12-01-12
    Dale Perkins Encinitas, CA 12-01-12 Member Since 2005

    BusyMom

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    "Wonderful as always"

    I love listening to Barbara Kingsolver narrate her own books. She always makes me think about things in a different way. She is one of the best contemporary writer there is. This is not quite Poisonwood Bible, but it would be hard to duplicate a triumph like that. This is classic Kingsolver, beautifully written.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Dona Ana, NM, United States 11-26-12
    John Dona Ana, NM, United States 11-26-12 Member Since 2008

    Powakee

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    "Slow to start but picks up steam just like a train"

    The short write up sounding appealing so I got this book. When I started listening the first two to four hours seemed quite tedious. I was nearly ready to give up but I kept pushing forward. Thank goodness I did! I can only go to the end and tell you this was one of the best told stories I have heard in some time. The main character is a little flighty but she is solidly grounded as to her family and is open to the new experiences. Because of my own reaction to her life choices I think I am probably not as open to new experiences as the main character and realizing that made me think I didn't like the opening section so much because of that.

    I liked the "butterfly" doctor. The speech he gave to the "ZNN" reporter was the kind of speech we all wish we could spout off the top of our head. That portion of the story was so realistically told I wanted to go to UTUBE and see if there was an actual video. I do wonder how long it will be before some college art/acting class makes an actual mock video of this part of the book and really posts it on the web. I think that'd be kick @$$ and quite a tribute to Kingsolver.

    All of the characters are most believable and this story made me feel like I was taking a very intimate peek into the lives of these people. At some point I was able to associate with the main character because she had this running dialog going on in her head that sounded very much like the running dialog that goes on in my head . . . . more often than I am sometimes comfortable with.

    I loved the author reading her own work. She was great. I loved her voice. The pace was perfect and she complimented what is otherwise a well told story.

    I did not give this book 5 stars for the story because I am so tired of the American story teller (we see it most often in movies) where at the end of the story everything is destroyed. The destruction seems only to be done for the benefit of the story teller and has little to do with the story itself. The symbol is 'okay, the story is over and now I am going to destroy the set." I don't think that is reflective of anything but our current culture and an inability to simply tell a story and then to let that be it and be over when it is over. But, to be over because the set is now destroyed is just . . . . blase. That said, even before I was finished I gave two copies of this book away as gifts to other family members. I really really liked this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura MURRIETA, CA, United States 01-27-13
    Laura MURRIETA, CA, United States 01-27-13 Member Since 2012

    ll38

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    "Disappointing..."
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Nothing. It is a sweet story but it was not enough to be a book. Would have made a great short story or documentary. I kept reading it thinking it would get better but there was nice dialogue but no action.


    What was most disappointing about Barbara Kingsolver’s story?

    It was a great story, but it was like being hit over the head with it...over and over and over again.


    What aspect of Barbara Kingsolver’s performance would you have changed?

    The best part of the book was her performance. Her accents, especially Ovid sounded authentic. The voice of Dellarobia was a little too monotone to me. I found my mind wandering when she would go on and on about everything.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    It is an important topic with real issues that affect us all. She certainly did a lot of scientific research and it seemed genuine and accurate. Although it addresses social and ecological consciousness, there was just not enough material for a book.


    Any additional comments?

    I did like the way she developed the characters, but all in all i did not like her writing style. It is doubtful I will read another Kingsolver Book.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cindy S. Williams Atlanta-ish, GA 01-08-13
    Cindy S. Williams Atlanta-ish, GA 01-08-13

    Cindy Williams

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    "Flight Behavior Crashes"
    Would you try another book from Barbara Kingsolver and/or Barbara Kingsolver?

    I probably would not try another book by Barbara Kingsolver. The plot never seemed to become clear and I got tired of waiting for something to happen.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Barbara Kingsolver again?

    I would probably not ever listen to anything by Kingsolver again.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Barbara Kingsolver’s performances?

    I will not try another performance by Kingsolver. She has a nice voice, but it gets monotonous after about the 3rd chapter.


    Any additional comments?

    A big disappointment after having read the reviews.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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