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Monday, May 23, 2011

The Pilot's Wife

one day last summer, while at the public library with the kids, I picked up the book The Pilot's Wife, by Anita Shreve.  In the foyer of our library is a large selection of books that, for any donation, is yours to take home and keep.  You never know what you are going to stumble upon and I find it quite fun looking through the diverse collection of books on the shelves.  This one had the Oprah's Book Club stamp on it, so I thought it would probably be a good read and well worth a donation to the library.

I recently spent two weeks in my hometown in KY, so when packing for my trip I grabbed this book off the shelf and threw it in my carry on bag to read on the plane.  I thought it might be a little more interesting, you know, reading the Pilot's wife while flying on a plane.  Little did I know that in the first two pages the author would reveal that the main character's husband, who is a commercial airline pilot, dies when his plane crashes. In all honesty, I felt a little uneasy for the rest of my flight after that.

Basically, this book is about a woman, Kathryn and her daughter Mattie who, at the beginning of the novel, learn the devastating news that Jack, their husband and father, respectively, has tragically died.  With the news that his plane has crashed off  the coast of Ireland, Kathryn and her daughter find themselves having to deal with the press, the airline and the public all while mourning the sudden loss of this man they loved.  With Jack being the pilot of the plane, all eyes are now on Kathryn, their home and their life as the airline tries to figure out what caused the plane to crash.  While putting pieces together herself, Kathryn learns things about her husband she never knew. Did she really even know this man at all? So many secrets.  So many lies.  He led a double life that she had no idea even existed.

I finished the book on my flight home from KY two weeks after I began. Well, I actually had about three pages left when my flight landed, so I read those in the car while leaving the airport, totally ignoring my husband and kids who had not seen me in two weeks.  It is not that often I get to actually read novels, let alone finish them.

I also recently learned that they made a film back in 2002 based on the book, so now that has been added to my bucket list of must see movies. 
Since picking up this book I have seen countless copies at thrift shops for only pennies.  So, my recommendation is to pick up a copy if you ever come across one.  I think you'll enjoy it and if not just throw it into your local charity or yard sale box.  Happy reading!

*photo from Oprah's Book Club


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