writer buzzes Manch
and away with story of lady Air Force vet
Lisa Parsons email@example.com
The Art of Uncontrolled
Flight, by Kim Ponders, HarperCollins, 2005, 181 pages.
At a mere 181 pages,
The Art of Uncontrolled Flight is short-story-like in its economy of
Its author, who names
Hemingway and Chekhov among her favorite writers, might be expected to
display near-military efficiency; she is a member of the Air Force
Reserves and was one of the first American women to fly in a war zone.
Ponders lives in New
Hampshire and will tour the area conducting book signings.
The novel, Ponders’
first, centers on Annie, a young Air Force pilot in the first Gulf War
who is married but involved in an affair with a fellow flyer. In
flashbacks we see her relationship with her father, also a pilot, who
she’d hoped to impress by taking up aviation herself.
strength is in imagery; every scene comes alive with visual detail, be
it a handful of toenail clippings or a tinfoil-covered casserole.
The novel is less about
flying and romance than it is about façade vs. reality: what the medals
and commendations and newspapers say vs. what really happened, what
Annie says to her spouse vs. what really happened, what people tell her
about her mother’s death vs. what she remembers, what her father says
vs. what she knows is true. The Art of Uncontrolled Flight is about
negotiating all those conflicting forces, controlling things enough so
as not to crash and burn but otherwise letting go, riding the wind.
Meet the author
Kim Ponders will
discuss and sign copies of her book at these locations:
Manchester Barnes &
Noble, Oct. 7 at 7 p.m.
Nashua Barnes & Noble,
Oct. 13 at 7 p.m.
Books and Music, Oct. 14 at 7 p.m