In Hovering Flight by Joyce Hinnefeld

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At 34, Scarlet Kavanagh has the kind of homecoming no child wishes, a visit back to family and dear friends for the gentle passing of her mother, Addie, a famous bird artist and an even more infamous environmental activist. Though Addie and her husband, ornithologist Tom Kavanagh, have made their life in southeastern Pennsylvania, Addie has chosen to die at the New Jersey home of her dearest friend, Cora. This is because the Kavanagh’s ramshackle cottage is filled with too much history and because, in the last ten years or so, and for reasons that are not entirely clear, even bird song has seemed to make Addie angry, or sad, or both. Now, in their final moments together, Scarlet hopes to put to rest the last tensions that have marked their relationship.

Through tender conversations with Cora and Lou, another of Addie’s dear friends, Scarlet slowly comes to peace with her mother’s complicated life. But can she do the same with her own? Scarlet has carried a secret into these foggy days - a secret for Addie, one that involves Cora, too.

In its structure and style this novel follows in the tradition of writers like Virginia Woolf, Harriet Doerr, and Carol Shields: musical and dramatic, with myriad stories and voices. But the evocative language of this soaring novel is Hinnefeld’s own.

About Joyce Hinnefeld

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Joyce Hinnefeld is an associate professor of writing at Moravian College in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. She is the author of a short story collection, TELL ME EVERYTHING AND OTHER STORIES (University Press of New England, 1998), which was awarded the 1997 Breadloaf Writers' Conference Bakeless Prize in fiction in 1997. IN HOVERING FLIGHT is her first novel.
Published September 1, 2009 by Unbridled Books. 280 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for In Hovering Flight

Publishers Weekly

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In this provocative and page-turning debut novel, Hinnefeld (Tell Me Everything and Other Stories ) recounts the life of bird-lover, environmental activist and ar

Jul 28 2008 | Read Full Review of In Hovering Flight

San Francisco Chronicle

For Addie, Scarlet's mother and the story's troubled heroine, the rival that gains her attention is environmental degradation, and as the members of Addie's close circle - her poet daughter, husband Tom, and college friends Lou and Cora - gather in Addie's cancer-ravaged last days, they reminisce...

Oct 20 2008 | Read Full Review of In Hovering Flight

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