Birds in Fall

Brad Kessler, Author
Brad Kessler, Author . Scribner $24 (241p) ISBN 978-0-7432-8738-8
Open Ebook - 256 pages - 978-0-7432-9913-8
Paperback - 241 pages - 978-0-7432-8739-5
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This brooding novel is a modern-day retelling of the Greek myth of Ceyx and Alcyone. In the eerie first chapter, Russell, a New York ornithologist, is on a flight to Amsterdam when the airplane plunges into the Atlantic near Nova Scotia. The victims' family members, including Russell's wife, Ana, gather near the site on Trachis Island to wait for word from search crews. Their host is Kevin, an innkeeper who witnessed the crash and occupies himself making the anxious guests comfortable. There, the disparate group, a global mix of parents, siblings, spouses and aunts and uncles, begins the difficult work of dealing with the tragedy, with Ana's story at the center, while Kevin, distracted by his duties, grows apart from his partner, Douglas. The protagonists are sympathetic and complex and Kessler, a journalist, children's book writer and novelist (Lick Creek ), writes with lyricism, but also with studied seriousness. (May)

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