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Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Before the Fall by Noah Hawley

This is a book that has some elements of a mystery, but which is elegantly told.  It has echos of some real life events, which I will not disclose more about as it will give away some things that are best left to the story teller.  A private plane going from Martha's Vineyard to New York City foes down.  The passengers include some powerful men in the financial world, and there are reasons to think that there might have been something amiss that precipitated the crash.  One man, a painter who was largely unknown, is the only adult to survive, and against all odds he saves a four year old boy as well.  The book very nicely describes each of the passengers on the plane and what they were like before they boarded, and intersperses this information with what happens in the present.  It gradually becomes clear that the crash was not a random accident.  There are a number of threads that could be true and would be plausible to be true, which is the art of writing about people who seem real, that they are complicated by nature, and we all have someone who might wish us ill.  Not too deep but enjoyable.

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