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The Long Flight Home

By: Alan Hlad
Narrated by: Simon Vance
Length: 10 hrs and 10 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (19 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

It is September 1940 - a year into the war - and as German bombs fall on Britain, fears grow of an impending invasion. Enemy fighter planes blacken the sky around the Epping Forest home of Susan Shepherd and her grandfather, Bertie. After losing her parents to influenza as a child, Susan found comfort in raising homing pigeons with Bertie. All her birds are extraordinary to Susan - loyal, intelligent, beautiful - but none more so than Duchess, who shares a special bond with Susan and an unusual curiosity about the human world. 

Thousands of miles away in Buxton, Maine, a young crop-duster pilot named Ollie Evans has decided to travel to Britain to join the Royal Air Force. His quest brings him to Epping and to the National Pigeon Service, where Susan is involved in a new, covert assignment. Codenamed Source Columba, the mission aims to air-drop hundreds of homing pigeons in German-occupied France. Many will not survive. Those that do make the journey home to England can convey crucial information on German troop movements - and help reclaim the skies from the Luftwaffe. 

The friendship between Ollie and Susan deepens as the mission date draws near. When Ollie's plane is downed behind enemy lines, both know how remote the chances of reunion must be. Yet Duchess's devotion and her singular sense of duty will become an unexpected lifeline.

©2019 Alan Hlad (P)2019 HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A Very pleasant surprise!

I almost passed this one by, From reading the pop-up synopsis, it seemed this was going to be the war from a bird's point of view. However, I was extremely pleasantly surprised to find a very well written Historical Fiction Novel filled with adventure, tragedy and romance. Add Simon Vance's near genius narration and you have one of the best audible books in my massive collection. Well done!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • BH
  • Madison, MS, US
  • 07-06-19

The Long Flight Home

I adored this beautifully written book about a love that survived WWII. I also learned so much about pigeons and their role during WWI and WWII. This will be the book that I will choose for my Book Club.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Simon Vance is always a wonderful narrator, but this book...

A more egregious piece of anthromorphism I have never encountered! That pigeon! Overly romanticized story, plucky heroine and evil bad guy. Irritating!