Flight Behavior

Flight Behavior

by Barbara Kingsolver
3.8 180

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Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver

Dellarobia Turnbow is a restless farm wife who gave up her own plans when she accidentally became pregnant at seventeen. 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.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062286246
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 11/05/2013
Edition description: Unabridged, Low Price CD
Sales rank: 557,473
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 5.80(h) x 2.10(d)

About the Author

Barbara Kingsolver's work has been translated into more than twenty languages and has earned a devoted readership at home and abroad. She was awarded the National Humanities Medal, our country's highest honor for service through the arts. She received the 2011 Dayton Literary Peace Prize for the body of her work, and in 2010 won Britain's Orange Prize for The Lacuna. Before she made her living as a writer, Kingsolver earned degrees in biology and worked as a scientist. She now lives with her family on a farm in southern Appalachia.

Barbara Kingsolver's work has been translated into more than twenty languages and has earned a devoted readership at home and abroad. She was awarded the National Humanities Medal, our country's highest honor for service through the arts. She received the 2011 Dayton Literary Peace Prize for the body of her work, and in 2010 won Britain's Orange Prize for The Lacuna. Before she made her living as a writer, Kingsolver earned degrees in biology and worked as a scientist. She now lives with her family on a farm in southern Appalachia.

Date of Birth:

April 8, 1955

Place of Birth:

Annapolis, Maryland


B.A., DePauw University, 1977; M.S., University of Arizona, 1981

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Flight Behavior 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 180 reviews.
MatthewK17815 More than 1 year ago
Written with rich, realistic characters and a fascinating premise, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. This is my first book by Ms. Kingsolver but I anticipate many more enjoyable moments spent with her books in the future. Can nature change your life? It certainly seems so for the main character Dellarobia Turnbow, who has almost what could be described as a vision, though it is a real event, on her way to an illicit affair one morning in rural Tennessee. The arrival of monarch butterflies in the woods near her home changes her life and outlooks on almost everything she knows. All the characters are exceptionally written and real; they could be people I know, work with, am friends with. Interlaced with the telling of Dellarobia's domestic life and the changes brought about by this miraculous and at the same time disastrous natural happening are also insightful commentaries via the character of etymologist Ovid Byron about climate change, the nature of science and the media, our places in the natural order, and whether or not we are too late in our efforts to save this planet from the atrocities we have inflicted on it's natural systems and beings. I can not think of a better work of fiction I have read this year and would without reservation recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good novel and especially to those who care for the state our planet is in and want to have a better understanding of what's at stake and how nature can affect every one of us, whether scientist, homemaker, or average Joe. A great read!
TheRelentlessReader More than 1 year ago
Flight Behavior offers a fresh view of climate change and the surrounding issues. It's easy to have grand ideas about how to fix it, but on the ground it's complicated, confusing and sometimes frightening. "I think people are afraid to face up to a bad outcome. That's just human. . . . If fight or flight is the choice, it's way easier to fly." Though science is at the heart of this novel it is written in a lively and accessible way. The best part of this book is the main character Dellarobia. She is doing the best she can with what life has thrown at her. She reminded me of women I know. She reminded me of me. If I were you? I'd put this book on my wish list. Jennifer @ The Relentless Reader
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Vintage kingsolver absolutely loved it brought climate change to life with her cast of characters and its affect on them
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not one of her best. While the characters were interesting, you had to wade through pages and pages of dry environmental theory. I got through the book but barely.
Georgene_McDermott More than 1 year ago
This was a very painful read for me, especially the beginning. Character development went on and on and on...I felt i was reading a Dickens novel. After the first hundred pages it got interesting.
GreyhoundMom More than 1 year ago
Kingsolver is a master of wordsmithing and, once again, she does it here. Despite the sometimes heavy handed environmentalism, she paints a portrait of an Appallachian family struggling to survive. Dellarobia, the main character, is stuck in a "shotgun" marriage when an influx of monarch butterflies and the scientists studying them open her eyes to possibilities. The story has characters that you feel you know and a land that comes alive under Kingsolver's pen. Just the description of the snow-covered farm near the story's end is enough to make this book worthwhile. Another wonderful book by a masterful author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am liking the book but must ask why is it that global warming issue is science vs. Christianity? That christians are somehow sticking their heads in the sand? I am christian and I do believe our planet is changing, that we have been given thr huge responsibility of taking care of the earth and we have failed in some ways. I see science as a way of showing God's wonders and a tool to help us do better.Just had to get that niggling voice out of my head!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good, not great. I always enjoy Barbara Kingsolver's books. Her characters are very rich and wonderfully drawn and I always learn something when I read one of her novels, but this book was tough to get through. The story does drag at times and while it is a truly good story I just found myself putting the book down often. Not sure that 400 some odd pages were necessarily to tell this story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not my favorite. Got somewhat bogged down in climate, biology and Appalacia stereotypes.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I highly recommend this book. I looove Barbara Kingsolver! She is without a doubt one of my favorite authors. I've loved every book I've read by her and Flight Behavior is no exception. I really identified with Dellarobia and her life and problems. I found all of the characters highly relatable and real. I also learned a LOT about climate change through the reading of this book. Love how she always mixes interpersonal relationships and issues with science and nature. Keep up the good work Ms. Kingsolver!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Please monitor the juveniles who have been consistently using the customer review blog to write infantile nonsense on the blog. Readers want to get an informative review. I have noticed the same username on other Barnes and Noble book review blogs.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Barbara Kingsolver remains one of my favorite authors. This book is well written, well conceived and beautifully crafted, but it seems very similar to Prodigal Summer. Read it and enjoy it, but if its your first foray into her writing, try another book first.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In my opinion, this novel is up to the caliber of The Poisonwood Bible and Kingsolver's earlier novels. Brilliantly cast in the mountains of Tennessee, Dellarobia is a bright and stifled young wife and mother longing for a life that would stimulate her mind. What she thinks she wants, an extra marital affair, at the beginning of he book seems like child's play compared to the shocking changes that come to her from her experiences in her own back yard. This is an excellent work of fiction and I highly recommend it.
oktruth More than 1 year ago
As I always seem to be, I was totally engrossed with her newest novel. The imagery that Kingsolver creates is breathtaking and heart wrenching at the same time! The characters continue to evolve throughout the story and their development is a joy to witness. I would highly recommend the newest from Barbara Kingsolver, Flight Behavior. Whether it is fiction or non-fiction, I believe she is the most talented writer of our time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had just finished the very serious "This Changes Everything" by Naomi Klein when I began Kingsolver's "Flight Behavior." Her delicate introduction of a very serious issue mirrors the delicacy of the fate of the Monarch butterflies, her caution echoes the cautionary course a butterfly takes as it crosses paths with us in our gardens. But the undertow to Kingsolver's current is the depressing reality that we are facing real consequences because of the human effect on global climate. And here is where Kingsolver shines, because she makes us look at the human factors like poverty vs conservation, desperation vs opportunity, education vs common sense, that affects everyone's relationship to their environment and ultimately the planet. Thanks Ms. Kingsolver!
tetonpilates More than 1 year ago
I give this book 3 stars because, and only because, parts of the writing are wonderful. It's much too long for the story told, and I get the sense that Kingsolver should have just written a nonfiction account of her love for biology and species diversity...or something. This tale drags in the mud and in the final pages, seems thrown out the window entirely. 
bibliolover More than 1 year ago
Excellent read. Not quite Poisonwood Bible but still very good. Her prose is beautiful. One can see Appalachia, not only in the woods, but in the people.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I always love her books but this one, of a completely plausible yet fictional natural phenomenon, is the best! Do yourself a favor and read it!
Westwood-Reader More than 1 year ago
I listened to Barbara Kingsolver narrate Flight Behavior. She has a very soft voice with not a lot of inflection. The first 2 CD's were pretty ho-hum for me. Then, the book picked up with the arrival of Ovid Byron. Dellarobia, the main character was stuck in a dull marriage with a kind, clod of a man. She yearned for mental stimulation and she got it from Ovid Byron and the scientists who came to her farm to study the rare phenomenon of Monarch Butterfly migration. I enjoyed Dellarobia's personal growth, her insight into the people around her, and especially, her interaction with her mother-in-law, Hester, and her son, Preston. The ending left me wondering - does Dellarobia live?
ironmaiden6 More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book but found It to drag in some places. Barbara Kingsolver is an excellent author and I will read anything that she writes. There is always a lesson in life to be learned from her works.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I absolutely love this book.  Such a relevant topic right now as the East Coast is getting pummeled in snow and the West Coast is in it's worst drought ever.  The characters in this book are so realistic and believable.  I felt like I could connect with most of them in one way or another.  I would highly recommend this book to anyone.
AlexandriaNY More than 1 year ago
Come for the story of Dellarobia, a desperate young woman.  Be entranced by Barbara Kingsolver's elegant language and beautiful drawn scenarios.  This seemingly simple book is an important one, possibly the "To Kill a Mockingbird" of its day.  It is not often you find a very readable novel in which the science is accurate, though the premise is pure fiction.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Several years ago (before I'd even heard of Barbara Kingsolver) I casually picked up a copy of "Animal Dreams" and I've been a fan of this author ever since. While I don't consider "Flight Behavior" her very best--it does move rather slowly, especially in the first few chapters--I enjoyed it for the descriptions, the character development, the atmosphere, and the skill with which a complicated subject is made understandable. Not a book to be read in a hurry; my advice is to take it slowly and enjoy the scenery.
kat29 More than 1 year ago
I am not done so cant click on all stars yet. my mom had read her other books such as the bean trees and the one about animals and eating meats.  I never got into those I started this book while on the bike at the gym and I had so so expectations. we are reading on my book club.  I finished the first chapter late at night and wanted to read more but knew I had to go to bed. of the past year I have read a lot of so so boks and only really loved about three or four. this one I will recommend so far. shes an excellent writer and uses a lot of detail and  its enriching the words float of the page. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have been reading Kingsolver since the "Bean Trees". She usually has a theme to her books that inform within an engrossing story. PoisonWood Bible, "Lacuna" being two strong ones that come to mind. "Flight Behavior" had some interesting environmental perspectives, but it took a long while to get comfortable with the characters. The ending was rather stark. It would not be on my list of Kingsolver favorites.