Fall Out of Heaven: An Autobiographical Journey

Fall Out of Heaven: An Autobiographical Journey

by Alan Cheuse

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Cheuse's father, a noted Bolshevik combat pilot, defected from the Soviet Union after his plane crashed and he was given an honorable discharge. Growing up in Perth Amboy, New Jersey, the author saw his immigrant father, Philip, as a fallen hero, a sour-faced oppressor and a dreamer whose job in an auto assembly plant had crushed him. Novelist Cheuse (The Bohemians took his own son Josh to the Soviet Union in 1986 to trace their family roots. He wrote this memoir to exorcise the ghosts of his unhappy childhood, to come to terms with his father, to forge a link between the generations. His novelistic gifts for atmosphere and drama are impressive, yet the book, an act of therapy for its author, never really gels. His father's unpublished autobiography, reshaped by the novelist, is interwoven with the narrative. It makes for resonant contrasts as Alan and Josh roll into the Finland Station, tour Moscow and fly over routes Philip had once taken. (September 1)
Library Journal - Library Journal
As an aspiring young writer, Cheuse was entreated by his father, Philip, to read his manuscript of his adventures as an airplane pilot for the Red Army Air Force. ``Just read it and give it a good going over.'' ``I don't have time for that, Dad,'' Alan would complain. Nearly 20 years later, four years after his father's death, Cheuse, now an established writer, does read the manuscript, is entranced by this brave young pilot he'd only barely known, and decides to travel to Russia with his own son, Josh, to visit the scenes of his father's childhood and youth. The result is this very moving ``autobiographical journey,'' an adept intertwining of the father's story, the story of Cheuse's own youth in New Jersey, and the account of the trip to Russia. Highly recommended for general collections. Marcia G. Fuchs, Guilford Free Lib., Ct.

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Smith, Gibbs Publisher
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1st ed

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