Sunday, November 24, 2013

Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver

In rural Tennessee, Dellarobia Turnbow, a discontented wife and mother, climbs a hill, to keep a rendezvous with a young telephone line repairman. Although she’s only twenty-eight, she feels like she’s given up on all her dreams. At seventeen she planned to go to college but got pregnant and married instead. Now she’s the mother of two children and living on a failing sheep farm.

As she climbs higher up the mountain she beholds an incredible sight, like a wall of shimmering orange flame without heat or smoke, a forest fire that doesn't burn. She takes it as a sign from God and turns back. But whether it’s a God-sent miracle or not, it is a unique natural phenomena that will soon attract the attention of the entire world. Without her glasses on, Dellarobia didn't realize that what she was looking at was masses of monarch butterflies clinging to the trees. They usually go to Mexico, but due to a devastating mud slide and climate changes they have come to Tennessee instead.

As scientists and sightseers gather, Dellarobia begins working part-time in a temporary lab studying the butterflies, and realizes that maybe it’s not too late and the life she once longed for is not beyond her. But it will mean change and sacrifice if she is prepared to make it.

This was an interesting book, both as an unhappily married woman’s personal dilemma and the plight of the Monarch butterflies. At times it seemed a little slow-paced and long to me, but overall it was an enjoyable read.

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