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The Flight of the Stork Hardcover – January, 2001


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In Flight of the Storks, French novelist Jean-Christophe Grange's second novel to be translated into English, a young, aimless academic tracks a flock of migrating storks across Europe and Africa in hopes of discovering the truth behind the sudden death of a Swiss ornithologist. Along the way, he uncovers a series of gruesome murders and other assorted evils. Unfortunately, the book's most promising elementsAthe multiple foreign settings (Bulgaria, India, Israel, etc.) and stilted Euro tough-guy talkAalso burden the book with pretension, rarely allowing it to rise above the level of bloodied, pseudo-philosophical exotica.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

"Absolutely riveting stuff." -- Peter Millar The Times London

"Blood-red Rivers is a blistering murder mystery ..."

-- Peter Longcake The Bookseller

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Harvill Press (January 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1860467814
  • ISBN-13: 978-1860467813
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.3 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,309,564 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Robert P. Gray on January 13, 2001
Format: Hardcover
The story starts with Louis Antioch's journey following the migration patterns of European storks. This task has been given to him by Max Bohm, who is found dead at the very start of the book. Soon this quest proves to be mysterious and very, very dangerous. One of the delights of the book is the descriptions of the various locales -- Switzerland, Slovania, Bulgaria, Turkey, Israel, Central African Republic and finally Calcutta. This descriptions show either very good research or personal knowledge. One warning is necessary for readers, at times, the book is quite gory, but never gratuitously so. When I read the book I immediately noticed the concise, rather chopping style that reminded me first of Hemingway, but then, of Camus. This should not be a surprising since Grange is French. Considering that this is Grange's first novel published in English, I am very impressed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ladyce West on June 11, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Thrillers are not usually on my list of books. My husband is the one who delights in them. So, this book -- I read the Brazilian edition of 2002 -- remained on the pile to be read for some time. It survived one move, for it had been given to me by a friend whose favorable opinion I respected. Only this month about 4 years after receiving the gift did I pick it up to read, in a long holiday weekend in June. My loss for not having read this earlier. I could not put it down, and have decided to purchase the Kindle Edition for my husband to read -- his Portuguese reading is slow when dealing with texts in Portuguese.

This is a veritable thriller. A bit cinematic, but so what? A bit gruesome, but not enough to make me not read it. Throughout compelling. It is different from most of the more popular thrillers, it is also very well written and the pace accelerates in a rhythmic crescendo. It is high quality entretainment. 5 stars.
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Format: Paperback
_Flight of the Storks_ by Jean-Christopher Grange is the first mystery novel I have read in probably ten or twelve years, as it is not a genre I read in. Watch on TV, sure, but not read, as my fiction tastes tend to run towards science fiction, fantasy, technothriller, and on rare occasions, horror. However, the natural history angle of the book - the main character, Louis Antioch, is hired by a wealthy Swiss by the name of Max Bohm to follow the 12,000-mile migration route of European storks from northern Europe to the remote Central African Republic and find out why many are not returning - intrigued me, as well as the international, globe-trekking angle of the book (Louis travels throughout eastern Europe, Israel, Africa, and even India in his quest).

Of course, there is much more to the disappearing storks as they are but part of a sinister web of intrigue that spans decades and continents. Though it became clear why the storks were vanishing not quite midway into the novel, there were other, deeper, and much, much darker mysteries behind and connected with the vanishing storks, mysteries that connect to the dimly remembered and tragic childhood of Louis himself.

I would warn the potential reader of the book that the novel is graphic at times. I would even say gory. Not gratuitous, in the sense that say Louis is sadistic or gets into especially ugly fights, but without I hope giving too much away, the central mystery of the book is a bit sickening.

It was an interesting novel to be sure. I couldn't honestly tell you if I liked it. It held my interest, which is itself a compliment.
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Format: Hardcover
Perpetual student, Louis Antioch, makes his move into the real-world by accepting a job with ornithologist Max Bohm, whereby he is to follow a flock of storks on there migratory path in order to determine why so many of them went missing the previous year. However, when Bohm is murdered before Antioch can even begin his job, Antioch instead teams up with a police detective to determine why Bohm was killed and what dark secrets are hidden in his mysterious past.

Jean-Christophe Grange's first novel, "The Flight of the Storks", might not be as good as his subsequent novels, "Blood-Red Rivers" and "The Empire of the Wolves", but it is still a pretty good, albeit ridiculously far-fetched, story. The story initially appears to be a rip-off of "Coma" and I thought that I could see every plot-twist coming a mile off, but by the middle of the book, the story was twisting in ways that I could never imagine. As with Grange's other novels, this is a fast moving, and highly original novel. Every time I thought the story was slowing down, something new would happen to hold my interest. The book is bloody and many of the ideas involved are gruesome (but no more so than most modern crime thrillers), which may put off some readers, but if you have the stomach for this sort of thing, then it's well worth reading.
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By giuseppe nativo on June 5, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I "met" this book one afternoon of some years ago. It was a paperback, very cheap. I thought:'it could be good to spend some days'.
From that day, i red all Grange' books, one after one other. It had been a fever and it still is .
This book is amazing. There's nothing in common with other thriller writers.
To read Grange' stories it like to go deep and deeper in a terrific journey, where people aren't what they look like and you are looking more than the solution of an enigma, but for the enigma inside yourself and that you can't watch because it scares you.

Buy them all and have fun. Grange' is the number one in Europe and reading just one of his books you will understand why.

Best regards
G.N.
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