Eleven people board a private plane for a short flight from Martha's Vineyard to New York City. Sixteen minutes into the flight the plane crashes. The only survivors are a four year old boy and the last minute addition to the flight - a down on his luck painter. The three crew members, the wealthy owner, his wife, daughter, bodyguard as well as his also wealthy friend and his wife all perish.
The media storm surrounding the survivors is immediate. As the search for the plane and bodies gets underway, speculation, theories and conspiracies abound.....with the media providing ample fuel.
Hawley takes us back to before the plane crashes - exploring each character's past until the moment they step on the plane. Each person's story is rich and full. This is what I love about Hawley's writing - the completeness of it. Even though we only have a short time to hear each character's voice before the crash, their backstories keep them firmly in the present. But it was Scott and young JJ that held me enthralled as they try to come to terms with having survived and navigate the media circus.
As more details and confirmations emerge from the present investigation, each 'before' story adds another possible reason or act that could have contributed to or caused the crash. Which character is it? Or was it simply an accident? That mystery is only revealed in the final few chapters.
"Everyone is from someplace. We all have stories, our lives unfolding along crooked lines, colliding in unexpected ways."
Hawley delivers a blistering look at how media shapes our opinions, our lives and the public's thirst for sensational and lurid details about someone else's life. A sense of entitlement to know and expose those details to the world. And how that can affect lives and outcomes.
The publisher has attached the 'thriller' label to this book. I don't quite agree with that, but I do agree that it's a heck of a good read. Read an excerpt of Before the Fall.
Noah Hawley is an Emmy, Golden Globe, PEN, Critics' Choice, and Peabody Award-winning author, screenwriter, and producer. He has published four novels and penned the script for the feature film Lies and Alibis. He created, executive produced, and served as showrunner for ABC's My Generation and The Unusuals and was a writer and producer on the hit series Bones. Hawley is currently executive producer, writer, and showrunner on FX's award-winning series, Fargo. (I love Fargo!) You can connect with Noah Hawley on Twitter as well as on Facebook.
If you'd like to read Before the Fall this summer as well, I have TWO copies to giveaway. Enter using the Rafflecopter form below. Open to US and Canada, no PO boxes. Ends June 18/16.