A group of siblings and their spouses gather for Christmas in upstate New York to try decide through rising tensions and old hurts what to do with the house their recently deceased mother has left them. 100,000 first printing. - (Baker & Taylor)
"The new novel from the critically acclaimed author of Want, told through the shifting voices of a family gathering for Christmas in upstate New York after the death of their beloved matriarch, at odds over the settling of her estate--a novel about art, grief, shame, ambition, joy, and the American safety net"-- - (Baker & Taylor)
"Arresting and powerful, Flight examines the possibility and pain of fierce love and hope in our time of looming existential threats.” — Lily King, New York Times bestselling author of Writers & Lovers
"Suspenseful, dazzling and moving.” — Rumaan Alam, New York Times bestselling author of Leave the World Behind
It’s December twenty-second and siblings Henry, Kate, and Martin have converged with their spouses on Henry’s house in upstate New York. This is the first Christmas the siblings are without their mother, the first not at their mother’s Florida house. Over the course of the next three days, old resentments and instabilities arise as the siblings, with a gaggle of children afoot, attempt to perform familiar rituals, while also trying to decide what to do with their mother’s house, their sole inheritance. As tensions rise, the whole group is forced to come together unexpectedly when a local mother and daughter need help.
With the urgency and artfulness that cemented her previous novel Want as “a defining novel of our age” (Vulture), Strong once again turns her attention to the structural and systemic failings that are haunting Americans, but also to the ways in which family, friends, and strangers can support each other through the gaps. Flight is a novel of family, ambition, precarity, art, and desire, one that forms a powerful next step from a brilliant chronicler of our time.
Publishers Weekly Reviews
Three siblings gather with their spouses and children for a fraught Christmas in Strong's delicate latest (after Want). Martin, the eldest, is a disgraced college professor married to ruthless lawyer Tess. Henry is an artist married to artist turned social worker Alice. Kate, the youngest, is a stay-at-home mom married to the useless Josh, who has recently come to the end of a once considerable inheritance. Everyone gathers at Henry and Alice's house in upstate New York; it's their first Christmas together since their mother, Helen, died eight months earlier. Tensions rise: Kate wants to live in Helen's house in Florida until her kids are off to college, but she needs her brothers to agree. Henry and Alice can't have kids; the other two families are knee-deep in child-rearing, and, meanwhile, Alice is inappropriately attached to a child named Maddie, one of her clients. A disappearance midway through amplifies the plot, but the theme of grief takes center stage, as Helen's memory permeates the gathering. Strong is adept as characterizing this loss in all its manifestations, and in rendering the challenges inherent in three families trying to celebrate together; upon arrival, Tess "wishes this visit were over." Of course, the drama and fully formed characters make readers feel otherwise. Once again, Strong demonstrates her talents for perception and nuance. Agent: Sarah Bowlin, Aevitas Creative. (Nov.)
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