As High as the Scooter Can Fly by Lia Nirgad

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Written with soft-pedaled irony, captivating charm, and tremendous heart, Lia Nirgad's As High as the Scooter Can Fly will seduce fans of Alice Hoffman, Angela Carter, and The Little Prince-it is the perfect grown-up fairy-tale.

Stuck in a small suburban house, with three daughters and an impressively dull husband who leaves her frozen inside, Layla dreams of far-off lands and a more fabulous life, asking herself, as Peggy Lee did, "Is That All There Is?" (But don't we all sometimes ?!) With fairy tale logic, her wish for travel makes it so-if you don't ask you don't get-and she discovers in her backyard a flying scooter, covered by vines, dead leaves, and lots of dust. And of course, if you remember your dream and brush off the dead leaves and dust and untangle the vines, things can start to happen. And they do.

Layla embarks on a series of trips, while her sisters watch on-but not silently. Liora, the eldest, nags Layla to grow up and settle down, and she has a potion to help. Linor, whose eyes change from violet to blue before she plucks men's hearts out with her knife-sharp nails, urges Layla to find a lover. Lihi advocates denial, and Luna, long dead, visits Layla at night and sniffs her troubled dreams. And if these conflicting opinions weren't enough, Layla and her sisters are ruled by the Loveless Winds, which urge them to settle for security and to forget about love and passion. But are they right? As Layla travels the globe, throwing herself headlong into life, she encounters everything a heroine deserves-nothing less than the world, in all its rich confusion and voluptuous delight.

About Lia Nirgad

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Lia Nirgad is a writer and translator, born in Belgium and raised in Nigeria, Argentina, and Israel. As High as the Scooter Can Fly is her first novel to be published in English. Her translations include Charles Frazier's Cold Mountain, and Lorrie Moore's Birds of America.
Published October 28, 2002 by Overlook Hardcover. 188 pages
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for As High as the Scooter Can Fly

Kirkus Reviews

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A sweet little allegory with an afterbite as a sad, lonely housewife reaches adventure and despair on her flying scooter: the first US appearance for Belgium-born writer and translator Nirgad.

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Publishers Weekly

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The author pays homage to every overburdened mother's standard "take me away" fantasy, a worthy plot device, but Layla's well-intentioned husband is predictably painted as a villain for wishing his wife would look to him for happiness.

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Austin Chronicle

there is a sense of true love for Layla from the very beginning of the story, which comes from Nirgad's presentation: "This Layla, who now spent her time taking best care of her garden and her daughters, and even of the husband she didn't love, was once a young girl who cared for one thing only;

Jan 24 2003 | Read Full Review of As High as the Scooter Can Fly

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