20—The Pilot's Wife by Anita Shreve

Two days, that's it. It took me two days to read this novel. By comparison, the last few books I've read have just been so, so. I pick them up, read a little set them down and maybe two or three weeks later I will have finished reading them. Fulfilling some absurd sense of obligation, that once I start a book I have to finish it.

Not  so The Pilot's Wife. This one's a page turner. Between 3 and 4 one winter's morning Kathryn's world is turned upside down when she is awakened by an insistent knock on the door. It's a representative of the pilot's union come to tell her the plane her husband of 16 years was piloting from Heathrow to Boston exploded and all persons aboard are presumed dead. 

In the ensuing days the cockpit voice recorder is found and there are intimations that her husband purposely caused the explosion. Kathryn refuses to believe her husband committed suicide. As she begins to sort through her husband's papers she discovers cryptic notes her husband has written (he was an inveterate list maker). The notes imply that all was not well with their relationship and spur Kathryn to seek out and find the truth.

Through periodic flashbacks we learn of their courtship and life together and of the relationship between her husband and their now 15 year old daughter, Mattie.

An intriguing, well written story.

© Surveyor of the Passing Scene