Book - 2019
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A woman strikes up a conversation with the man sitting next to her on a plane after some turbulence. He returns home to tragic news that has also impacted another stranger, a shaken pilot on his way to another continent who seeks comfort from a journalist he meets that night. Her life shifts subtly as well, before she heads to the airport on an assignment that will shift more lives in turn. In this wondrous, profoundly moving novel, Szalay's diverse protagonists circumnavigate the planet in twelve flights, from London to Madrid, from Dakar to Sao Paulo, to Toronto, to Delhi, to Doha, en route to see lovers or estranged siblings, aging parents, baby grandchildren, or nobody at all. Along the way, they experience the full range of human emotions from loneliness to love and, knowingly or otherwise, change each other in one brief, electrifying interaction after the next.
Publisher: [Toronto] :, McClelland & Stewart,, 2019
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780771001673
Branch Call Number: FICTION SZA
Characteristics: 135 pages ; 21 cm
Alternative Title: Book Club Selection


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Jul 04, 2020

"Turbulence" by David Szalay is a novel in the form of - cleverly - linked short stories. A pair of IATA codes titles each chapter (short story). The first chapter is LGW-MAD. Frequent flyers would deduce that to mean from London (Gatwick) to Madrid (Barajas) airport. Sure enough, the story begins in London and ends in Madrid. The next story starts in Madrid and ends in, well, the next place. Character also links: a background character will fly to the next destination and become the new central character. The novel as a whole has no principal set of characters nor plot. It's a novel joined together by its conceit or theme: we are all connected, flight connects us. And, sometimes that flight isn't smooth: there's turbulence.

Feb 03, 2020

I liked the premise of 12 stories being interconnected and I personally love airports which is why I picked up the book. A very quick read that didn't have a lot of depth to it.

Aug 20, 2019

A set of 12 interconnected short stories in which the reader circumnavigates the globe, often in an airplane. A secondary character in one story is the main player in the next one and so on.

It was interesting, but it was so short! I just wished there was more to it. If you want to feel like a reading rock star though, this one is less than 200 pages and the audiobook is under 3 hours.

Aug 19, 2019

I liked this set of short stories much better than the previous collection.... these are shorter with much more approachable characters... does a good job with the connection between them all as well as with creating a quick character in a situation... well done

Jul 29, 2019

A twelve very short stories connected to each other and one full circle....twelve different individuals going through some "turbulence" in their lives....not sure how should I feel about this book of very short and not so much developed stories and people in it....vert "dry" for my liking and very short. But, it's a very speedy read!

Jul 22, 2019

Szalay is indeed clever in these 12 stories of 12 flights around the world. The stories and linked and lead into each other. All of the protagonists are in some sort of trouble, with no bright spots except the cleverness and good writing of this short book itself.

debwalker Jul 20, 2019

The strangers you meet on planes....

JCLHeatherC May 13, 2019

Short read. I don't know what I thought about it. But the fact that I'm still thinking about it days after finishing it must mean something.

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