Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Tuesday Intro: Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver


"A certain feeling comes from throwing your good life away, and it is one part rapture.  Or so it seemed for now, to a woman with flame-colored hair who marched uphill to meet her demise.  Innocence was no part of this.  She knew her own recklessness and marveled, really, at how one hard little flint of thrill could outweigh the pillowy, suffocating aftermath of a long disgrace.  The shame and loss would infect her children too, that was the worst of it, in a town where everyone knew them. Even the teenage cashiers at the grocery would take an edge with her after this, clicking painted fingernails on the counter while she wrote her check, eying the oatmeal and frozen peas of an unhinged family and exchanging looks with the bag boy: She's that one.  How they admired their own steadfast lives.  Right up to the day when hope in all its versions went out of stock, including the crummy discount brands, and the heart had just one instruction left: run.  Like a hunted animal, or a racehorse, winning or losing felt exactly alike at this stage, with the same coursing of blood and shortness of breath.  She smoked too much, that was another mortification to throw in with the others.  But she had cast her lot.  Plenty of people took this way out, looking future damage in the eye and naming it something else.  Now it was her turn.  She could claim the tightness in her chest and call it bliss, rather than the same breathlessness she could be feeling at home right now while toting a heavy laundry basket, behaving like a sensible mother of two." 
Flight Behavior
by Barbara Kingsolver

I plan to start this book later today; it's my book club's August selection. I've read Kingsolver on and off over the years and have enjoyed, to varying degrees The Bean Trees, Pigs in Heaven, Animal Dreams, The Poisonwood Bible, Prodigal Summer (my favorite), and Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. I haven't read her most recent novels, so look forward to catching up with her work.

What do you think of the opening? Would you keep reading this novel?


Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea posts the opening paragraph (sometime two) of a book she decided to read based on the opening. Feel free to grab the banner and play along.

38 comments:

  1. I've had this one in my TBR stack for ages, mostly because I loved The Poisonwood Bible. Keep reading!

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    1. booksaremyfavouriteandbest - I sure will!

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  2. I've had this on my stacks, my mom picked it up when she was here and I think it went home with her. Enjoy.

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    1. Nise' - That happens with my mother and sister all the time, too!

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  3. Wow! That is an amazing intro...and I've been meaning to read this one. Up it goes on the list!

    Here's MY TUESDAY MEMES POST

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    1. Laurel-Rain Snow - Kingsolver is quite a writer. I look forward to getting into this one!

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  4. This is on my list to read so yes I'd keep reading!

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    1. Darlene - It's been too long since I've read Kingsolver... looking forward to this one!

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  5. Actually, I found the introduction to be a bit off putting when I listened to Flight Behavior last month. I had to listen to chapter 1 twice in order to follow it--maybe it's because I didn't like the woman much at first and felt frustrated with her and wasn't sure I wanted to read about someone willing to throw away her life.

    I ended up loving the book, and I'll be interested to read your review down the road.

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    1. JaneGS - Well, now I don't feel so bad. I read the first few pages twice last night, couldn't quite grasp what was going on, and decided I was too tired to start a new book! Loved the plot description though.

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  6. I hope you end up enjoying this one! I read it a while back. I was especially struck by the relationships :)

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    1. Jennifer - Oh good... love it when an author gets the relationships right!

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  7. Hmmm. I would probably keep reading, but I would probably have to read the paragraph twice -- maybe with a glass of wine! There's a lot going on there!

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    1. Col - Haha! I read that paragraph twice and decided it just wasn't the right time to start a new book... maybe a glass of wine would help ;-)

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  8. Sounds very good. I would keep reading!

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    1. Pat - I'm definitely going to keep reading this one!

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  9. Keep reading! I love this opening.

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    1. Vasilly - Even though I had to read it twice, I really like the opening, too. Can't wait to spend more time with this book.

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  10. JoAnn,
    Prodigal Summer is my favorite Kingsolver novel as well! I'd love to read it again, and I should. My second favorite is The Poisonwood Bible, which is a classic, I believe. I have listed Flight Behavior as one of my absolute "MUST READS" of the summer. Gosh, I hope I get to it. Time is flying.

    I'm looking forward to hearing what you think of Flight Behavior.

    Judith

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    1. Judith - I hope you can get to it, too. Would love to compare notes!

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  11. I liked this one a lot as well as Poisonwood Bible. Hope it is one that you enjoy. (I did like the intro as well).

    Thanks for joining in JoAnn.

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    1. Diane - I thought this was one you enjoyed!

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  12. I actually really liked that opening, so I would keep reading this one for sure.

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    1. Staci - I really like the opening, too - must have been a little foggy when I read it the first time ;-)

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  13. I enjoyed it very much, well I love everything Kingsolver writes

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    1. Wordsandpeace - Glad to know that!

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  14. I've been meaning to read this one...hope you enjoy it! Thanks for visiting my blog.

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    1. Catherine - I hope so, too. Will post a review after my book club meeting.

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  15. This sounds really good. I've never read this author.

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    1. Yvonne - It's been several years since I've read her... hope I still enjoy her books.

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  16. I've just finished listening to this one. This is my first Kingsolver. I have mixed feelings about it.

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    1. Arti - I'll look forward to reading your thoughts... am considering making this a read/listen combo. Have requested the CDs from the library and have the book on my kindle.

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  17. Kingsolver has been so hit or miss for me. I've loved some of her work and haven't cared for others. I'm on the fence about trying this one. I'll wait for your review :)

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    1. Melissa - Kingsolver's books haven't been very consistent for me either, but I have high hopes for this one.

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  18. The opening does actually sound pretty good. I'm a little off Kingsolver lately, though. The Lacuna was such a slow and boring book I don't know if I'll get around to picking up Flight Behaviour anytime soon. I love her older books and am just now reading Pigs in Heaven.

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    1. Trish - I was thankful the selection was Flight Behavior and not The Lacuna. I've been actively avoiding that one!

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  19. This does sound good! I hope you enjoy it.

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    1. Literary Feline - I hope so, too. Haven't read much more yet. I want to finish up Hotel du Lac first.

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