Paleontologist Howard Beamish is flying to Nairobi when his plane is forced to land in Callimbia. Journalist Lucy Faulkner, on assignment to write a travel piece for a Sunday magazine, is on the same flight. What happens to Howard and Lucy in Callimbia is one of those accidents that determine fate, that bring love and take away joy, and that reveal the precariousness of our existence.
With intelligence, grace, and gentle irony, Penelope Lively illuminates the age-old dance of myth and reality in a novel sparkling with wit, humor, and keen insight into the storytelling faculty of the human mind.
“Written with grace and clarity, and luminous with insights about the human condition, [this novel] is as timely as the evening news and as eternal as the most classic love story…Against all the conventions of contemporary fiction, Lucy and Howard’s mature romance is fresh and convincing.” (Publishers Weekly)
“Lively handles her story with skill, grace, and invigorating charm; with an economy of words, the terror of the hostages is made palpable. Highly recommended.” (Library Journal)
“Amusing in the urbane British way, satiric without ever testing the limits of credibility, larkish but not fluffy—in short, more of the Lively right stuff.” (Kirkus Reviews)
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An excellent reading of a difficult book